Dining out with new acquaintances is kinda stressful for me at times. The thing is… my eating habits can be best described as “weird”. It takes some getting used to consider it as normal. The only proper meal I eat every day is breakfast. The rest depends on my mood and all the junk food I've stashed away in my cupboard. I've this very unhealthy habit of nibbling all the time and because of that I tend to eat very small portions during lunch or dinner.
When we go out with new people, most of them are kinda surprised or shocked seeing the way I eat. I think I've told you before also, I'm not a foodie in any sense of the word. So their idea of a food blogger and my idea of eating is a total mismatch.
All said and done, I usually end up giving a tonne of explanations and it becomes complicated, you get the picture, right? At the end of the meal, I usually feel so tired and full more because of the explaining than by eating.
Having said that, there are some dishes or some days when I feel like indulging in good food. North Indian curries, usually the rich and creamy ones like Butter Chicken, Chicken Tikka Masala etc; are something I love with some hot rotis on the side.
When we go to such restaurants I usually end up eating a “normal portion”, unless I'm too full of junk food. Paneer is something that I cook very often at home. Since, it's not healthy to eat rich and creamy dishes on a daily basis (yeah yeah… I just heard myself and I do sound like a big hypocrite after explaining my junk food diet), anyways… I cook the regular not-so-rich-and-creamy gravy.
Both of us were getting bored of the same old Paneer curry and so I decided to try out this one. Though this is rich for a daily basis, I've tried my best not to make it so rich where you use 50 gms of butter and 1/2 cup of cream. This is a toned down or a healthier version of Restaurant Style Paneer Makhani. It's rich and creamy, but not over the top. Usually, when I've these dishes from outside, at the end of the meal, it feels so heavy and full. But, this one, though it's creamy, it's not heavy on your tummy. Masala is used mildly, but the flavour is really good. Anyways, you be the judge….
Here is the recipe…
Combine onion, tomato, ginger & garlic, cashew nuts, salt and water (2-2.5 cups). Bring to a boil. Reduce flame to lowest and cook for 10-12 mins. Seaparate the stock (cooking water and veggies). Once the veggies are cooled a bit (10-15 mins), add 1/4 – 1/3 cup of stock to it and grind to a smooth paste. Keep it aside…
Heat oil/ghee in a wide and deep pan. Add jeera. Add Add chilli & coriander powder. Fry it for 1-2 mins…
Add the ground paste and mix well…
Add tomato puree & garam masala and stir…
Add paneer cubes and mix well. Cover and cook on low flame for 7 -8 mins…
Add kasuri methi and mix well. Take the pan from the stove and add the milk gradually. Gently mix the curry and bring it back to fire. Add butter (if using) and continue to cook for 3-4 mins. Do a taste test, and add 1/2 tsp of sugar, if required, to balance the flavours..
- 200 gms Paneer
- 2 medium Onion cubed
- 2 medium Tomato cubed
- 2.5 tsp Chopped ginger & garlic each
- 12 Cashew nuts
- 1/2 tsp Cumin
- 2 tsp Chilli powder
- 1 tsp Coriander powder
- 2 tbsp Tomato paste
- 1/2 tsp Garam masala
- 2 tsp Kasuri methi
- 2-3 tbsp Hot milk
- 10 gms Butter optional
- Oil / ghee
Combine onion, tomato, ginger & garlic, cashew nuts, salt and water (2-2.5 cups). Bring to a boil. Reduce flame to lowest and cook for 10-12 mins. Separate the stock (cooking water and veggies).
Once the veggies are cooled a bit (10-15 mins), add 1/4 - 1/3 cup of stock to it and grind to a smooth paste. Keep it aside.
Heat oil/ghee in a wide and deep pan. Add jeera. Add Add chilli & coriander powder. Fry it for 1-2 mins. Add the ground paste and mix well.Add kasuri methi and mix well.
Mix tomato paste with 2 tbsp water and add to the curry. Add salt & garam masala and stir. Add paneer cubes and mix well. Cover and cook on low flame for 7 -8 mins.
Take the pan from the stove and add the milk gradually. Gently mix the curry and bring it back to fire. Add butter (if using) and continue to cook for 3-4 mins. Do a taste test, and add 1/2 tsp of sugar, if required, to balance the flavours.
I cooked the dish in 1 tbsp ghee and used a knob of butter in the end. If you want, you can cook the dish in oil and add butter in the end.
You can add the stock to adjust the consistency of the gravy. Add stock (if using) before adding milk. Keep in mind that the gravy tends to thicken as it rests.
You can store the left over in fridge upto 3 days.