60 minute Peas and Cottage Cheese Curry (Matar Paneer)!

In-laws coming over? No time to come up with something that will impress them? Fret not, you have come to the right place! For many years I have been following simple recipes with great success and little worry. Let me help you in your endeavours to learn cooking in easy and simple steps.

Today I’m going to share my special Matar Paneer recipe, which I have used with great success and much appreciation over the years. This recipe leads to a spicy and tangy gravy, let me know in the comments if you’d like to know a milder version of it as well.

Skip to the bottom of the post for a quick summary slide show.

Ingredients:

 

Peas – 3 cups (peeled)
Tomatoes – 5 medium
Onions – 1 big or 2 small
Cottage Cheese (Paneer) – 200 g
Salt – To taste
Turmeric – As needed
Chilli powder – To taste
Cumin – For seasoning (chhaunk)
Pepper – For seasoning (chhaunk)

Ghee – For seasoning (chhaunk)
Garam Masala – 1 teaspoon

This measure serves 4 people.

Procedure:

  1. Getting started – Crush some cumin and pepper together. You can use a tumbler and rolling pin if you don’t have a mortar and pestle set.

2. Heat it up! – Heat 1 teaspoon full of ghee in a pressure cooker and add the crushed cumin-pepper mixture to it as chhanuk.

3. Grind them up – Cut the onions in 4 pieces each and grind them up to make a smooth paste.

4. Mix and make the base – Add the paste of the onions to the chhaunk and roast.

5. Where are my tomatoes? – Cut the tomatoes in 4 pieces each and grind them up to make a smooth paste.

6. Something smells good! – The onions would be roasted by now, and would have a beautiful golden brown colour with a lovely aroma wafting out of the pan.

7. Add a dash of colour and taste – At this time add red chilli and turmeric powder and let it roast for some more time.

8. Paint it red! – Add the tomato paste to the cooker at this point. Cook for ten minutes until the tomato paste changes colour.

9. Check on the tomato paste – After ten minutes, the tomato paste should change colour from light pinkish red to a bright tomato red.

10. A surprise ingredient! – Mix a tablespoon full of flour in water to make a smooth paste. This will be useful for the consistency of the gravy.

11. Pull the gravy together – At this point, the gravy begins to split into paste and water. Add the flour paste to it and mix well.

12. Smooth smooth smoooooth – Mix the gravy well and it should become a smooth buttery paste. It should now look like this:

13. Chop, chop chop! – Chop up the cottage cheese in desired shape and wash it with hot water. I prefer cubes of about 1 cm.

14. Add the stuff – Add your peas and cottage cheese to the gravy now, followed by salt to your taste. Cheat tip: Mix only after adding salt; when the colour from the gravy spreads uniformly, your salt has mixed uniformly with the gravy.

15. Spice it up! – Add water and a teaspoon of Garam Masala and mix well. Close the lid and cook on full flame till it gives two whistles.

16. And we’re done! – Open the cooker when it no longer resists. Serve your steaming hot Matar Paneer in a bowl and watch your guests lick their fingers!!!

 

A quick summarised snapshot in slideshow format is attached below:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Time Analysis:

Time taken for prep (Peeling the peas included) – 25 minutes

Time taken to roast and prepare the gravy – 15 minutes

Time taken for the cooker to whistle twice – 10 minutes

Time taken for the pressure to release – 10 minutes

In 60 minutes, you have lip smacking, low cal, tangy Matar Paneer on your table! It takes only one spoonful of ghee. You can use oil too, except it tastes much much better with ghee. You can change the amount of water depending upon how thick you want the gravy. I keep it thick for Rotis and make it a little more watery for rice.

I have a shorter spicy version of Matar Paneer, and we will make that the next time! Go on, try this one and let me know how it went. I’d love to know how it goes for you. Until next time, take care and keep cooking!

 

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