Paneer is a type of cheese that is common in South Asian cuisine. Paneer is made by curdling milk with the addition of lime or vinegar. Here in the US, cottage cheese or queso fresco (a variety of Mexican cheese) is the recommended substitutes. There are a variety of dishes made from paneer in north Indian cuisine. Here I have posted the recipe for one such popular dish called Kadai Paneer.
Kadai Paneer literally means paneer that is cooked in a cooking pot. It is a popular dish in Indian restaurants and often served during festivals and in functions. Kadai Paneer is one of the few dishes that I liked in the first taste. The recipe I have given below is of restaurant style Kadai Paneer. It is spicy and colorful dish (mainly because of the bell peppers) and goes well with chappati (or any Indian flatbreads), pulav/pulao etc.
For Kadai Paneer, fresh ingredients are the key. You have to make the ingredients like crushed ginger garlic, coriander powder and chilli powder only when it is time for them to be added, unlike other recipes where they are prepared beforehand. Try this restaurant style Kadai Paneer and enjoy it with hot rotis on a lay afternoon like I do – It does feel heavenly. 🙂
- Cumin seed – a pinch
- Onion, medium, finely chopped – ½ no
- Garic cloves – 4 nos
- Ginger – ¾”
- Tomatoes, big, finely chopped – 2 nos
- Coriander seeds – 1 tsp
- Red chilli flakes – ½ tsp
- Green or red bell pepper or capsicum, julienned – ½ no
- Green chilli, finely chopped – 1 nos
- Salt as required
- Garam masala – a pinch
- Paneer, cut to cubes – ½ pk
- Kasthoori methi leaves or dry fenugreek leaves – 1 ½ tsp
- Ginger, julienned – ¼ “
- Cilantro, finely chopped - for garnishing
- Heat a kadai and add oil. When the oil is hot add cumin seeds. Wait until they start to sizzle. Add finely chopped onion. Sauté until they turn translucent. Meanwhile crush ginger and garlic in a motor and pestle.
- Add the crushed ginger and garlic. Sauté until the raw smell disappears.
- Add in finely chopped tomato and sauté well in a low flame. Meanwhile coarsely pulse the coriander seed and red chilli flakes for very few seconds. See notes below.
- Add the coriander powder and mix well. Sauté and cook until oil separates.
- Add in the julienned capsicum and green chilli. Mix and sauté them for couple of minutes until capsicum is half cooked – you could add very little water if you feel the mixture is dry.
- Add salt and garam masala. Stir to mix.
- Add in the paneer cubes and mix until the masala is well coated. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes and add kasthoori methi, julienned ginger and coriander leaves. Stir and cook for another couple of minutes and switch off the flame.
- Serve delicious kadai paneer with any pulao or roti. Enjoy!
2.I added chilli flakes so it took me only very few seconds to blend them to a coarse powder. You could also add one red chilli in place of chilli flakes.
3.The coriander mixture has to be coarse and do not blend it to fine powder.