Matar Paneer is an everyday dish made of Green Peas and cottage cheese in a tomato gravy. Usually had with any Indian flatbread or with rice. The sweetness of the Peas, the tanginess of the tomatoes, the texture of the Paneer, and the flavors of the spices all gel so well. It can be directly made in a pressure cooker( which I have done today) or can be made in a karahi.
In Rajjo’s Kitchen whenever I say tomatoes its mostly the local one( desi) and not the hybrid tomatoes ones which are sweeter. When I’m using the Hybrid ones will always specify.
Let’s get to the recipe right away.
PREP TIME: 15 COOK TIME: 15Mins
TOTAL TIME:30Mins COURSE: MAIN
CUISINE: NORTH INDIAN SERVINGS: 6
AUTHOR: Rajni Ram
Green Peas 100 gm
Paneer 200 gm cut into cubes
Tomatoes 2 large or 3 medium(pureed)
Onions 1 large pureed
Ginger-garlic paste 1 tsp
Refined oil 6 tsp( 3 tsp first and 3 later, follow the recipe)
Besan or Gram flour 1 Tbsp(or) Cashew nuts 6( pre-soaked)
Fresh coriander leaves finely chopped 2 tsp
Salt to taste
Jeera/ Cumin 1/2 tsp
Turmeric powder 1/2 tsp
Red chilli powder 1 tsp ( can add 1/2 tsp more if you need more spice)
Garam Masala powder
If using a pressure cooker you don’t have to precook the peas. If using the Karahi method, precook the peas( they should be cooked soft, but not mushy).
Put the cooker on the stove, heat on medium. once hot, pour oil 3 tsp.
once the oil is hot, add the cumin seeds, as they crackle add the turmeric powder.
Now add the onions puree and cook until transparent, don’t brown them. Add in the Ginger Garlic paste and saute well. The onion and Ginger Garlic paste will start releasing oil once they are cooked. Add another 3 tsp oil, reduce the flame of the stove and put in the Besan, and nicely saute it in the oil. Take care to not burn it. As the Besan browns, add the tomato puree and drop in the peas, add salt followed by all the spice powders( except Garam Masala powder). add about 1.5 cups water, close the cooker, and put on the whistle. cook for 6 whistles and put off the stove. While the pressure reduces in the cooker, let’s get our Paneer ready. Cut them into cubes, and drop them in boiling water with a pinch of salt for 2 minutes. Remove immediately and transfer to a plate. Once the pressure in the cooker releases, open the cooker and drop in the cubed Paneer and switch on the stove on low. check for salt and spices at this stage and adjust it. Add the Garam Masala powder now and put off the stove. Transfer the contents to a bowl and garnish with fresh coriander leaves. You can decorate it with a little grated cheese, for the restaurant effect. Voila, your Matar Paneer is ready. Enjoy!
STEPWISE RECIPE FOLLOWS:
1. Assemble all ingredients.
2. Put the pressure cooker on the stove and let it heat up. Once hot, pour 3 tsp oil and heat. Add Jeera and as it splutters add the onion paste and saute nicely.
3. Add the ginger-garlic paste and saute further until the oil is released. At this stage add the remaining 3 tsp oil and add the besan to this and roast on low flame till it becomes a little brown. It may appear as a paste, keep stirring this paste continuously till you see a light brown color. Add the tomato puree and stir nicely so that no lumps of the paste remain.
4. Let a slight boil come and add the Green Peas followed by all the masala powders( except Garam Masala). Add salt and stir.
5. Add 1 cup water, give a nice stir close the lid of cooker and let 6 whistles come.
6. After the pressure comes down open the cooker. Switch on the stove and add the paneer cubes and let it boil on low heat for two minutes. Add the Garam Masala powder, give it a stir and empty into a bowl. Garnish with fresh coriander. You can also sprinkle some shredded cheese to decorate( I forgot to do so).
Your tasty Matar Paneer is ready. Enjoy with Phulkas, Rotis, or Naan on the side or just rice.
1. As it’s a simple everyday subji ( side dish) I did not add the whole masala in the beginning. If you are cooking it for a get-together or party, you can add the whole masala like 1 or 2 cloves, 1 Tej Patha( Bay leaf), few Peppercorns along with Jeera.
2. If you want to use cashew nuts instead of the Besan then, after adding Jeera saute onion, ginger garlic paste and cut tomatoes until they turn soft. Cool and blend in mixie. Pour this paste into the cooker and continue from step 4.
3. I usually don’t fry the Paneer in oil, instead, I put it in boiling water for exactly 2 mins, don’t let it stay in hot water for more than that, they may stick to each other.
If following the karahi method, pre-cook the peas and follow the same method.
If you tried this recipe and liked it, comment below. I would love to hear from you.