Thursday, January 8, 2015

Matar Paneer (Cottage Cheese and Peas in Creamy Tomato Cashew Gravy)

Restaurant style subjis are always a big hit, only when we match the exact flavour. I've always wondered how the dishes like paneer butter masala and gravies alike come out so tasty. Today was in the mood to nail it. 

Peas, I've never liked it. When my mother used to make peas pulao, I used to pick out each and every pea and keep it aside and eat just the rice. But, pregnancy changed me. When I was pregnant, my mother - in - law made peas masala and that was so so yummy. Ever since I've started liking peas. 

Pune is one place that I've seen the best vegetable produce.  The winters over here are so good that I love the fresh produce and peas is one of them. I buy peas in bulk and freeze them so that I can use it when ever possible. 

I was searching for a recipe from the net, but was not satisfied with one too!!! Then decided that I would do what I want. The result, the gravy was just the exact taste I wanted and the creaminess was finger licking....

 What do you need:
  1. Paneer - 200 grams
  2. Peas - 1 cup (boiled)
  3. Cashew nuts - 20 (soaked in hot water for 30 minutes)
  4. Onion - 2 medium sized (cut into big pieces)
  5. Tomato - 2 medium sized (cut into big pieces)
  6. Ginger garlic paste - 1/2 tsp
  7. Oil - 5 tsp
  8. Byadgi Chilies (dried) - 6 nos.
  9. Kashmiri Chilli Powder - 2 tsp
  10. Kitchen King Masala - 2 tsp
  11. Dhaniya Powder - 3 tsp
  12. Jeera Powder - 1 tsp
  13. Cardamom - 2 pods (powdered) 
  14. Sugar - 1 tsp
  15. Salt - to taste
  16. Kasoori Methi - 2 tsp
  17. Milk - 1/4 cup

How to go about it:
  1. Heat oil in a pan, add onions, tomatoes, byadgi chilies and ginger garlic paste. Fry until the onions lightly transparent and tomatoes turn a bit mushy. Let this mixture cool completely.
  2. Add the fried mixture and the cashews to a mixer jar. Grind this to a very smooth paste. Adding water is not necessary.
  3. Heat oil in a pan, add dry spices - chilli, dhaniya and jeera powders. Roast these for about 2 - 3 minutes. 
  4. Add the ground paste and keep stirring until the oil separates. This paste has a tendency to stick to the pan. 
  5. Add the boiled peas, salt, kitchen king masala, kasoori methi. 
  6. Now top in the boiled peas and add milk. Let this bubble up for about 5 - 6 minutes.
  7. Add sugar and cardamom finally. If necessary add water so that the gravy is according to the consistency that you prefer.
  8. Bring the gravy to a boil and serve with roti or simply jeera rice.
Njoy with your loved ones...