Shahi Paneer

It’s been a long time since I blogged, and I would like to thank my millions of considerate readers for not bothering me with emails and comments inquiring about my well being, though I am sure you were worried to tiny bits.

Inspite of the long break, I have to start my post on a bitter note. All because of the receptionist at my office who refused to lend me a pen that she was idly twiddling about in her fingers. There I was, with a cheque and a deposit envelope from the nearby ATM and all I wanted was a tiny drop of her ink to write down my account number. But madam wasn’t in a mood to share. She looked at me as if I had asked to borrow her husband, declared she had only one precious pen and continued twiddling it about with a smug expression that made me want to throw her across the room.

(Deep Breath)

As I walked back to my cubicle to borrow the elusive pen from my neighbor, shock and shame all over my (rather pretty) face, I couldn’t help thinking about Karma, the “whatever you give the world comes back to you” thing. In my case, it’s what I didn’t give that is the root of all my problems. There I was, on a BMTC, laptop bag and fruits of a mindless shopping routine comfortably placed on my lap and the adjacent seat (didn’t I say mindless shopping), when a woman asked if she could borrow my pen to sign her bus pass. But I was too lazy to dig it out of my purse. I looked at her with an expression of deep sorrow, declared I didn’t have a pen and turned away quickly before she caught my lie. From that day onwards, I have faced a lot of difficulty in getting a pen or any other writing instrument when I needed one.

I’ve heard people say Karma gets you for all your good and bad deeds in the next birth. This means that your fortune this birth is based on what you did the last time you were around. But she is giving me instant punishments for my bad deeds in this birth itself. (Yes, Karma is a she! If she had been a he, he would have been too busy watching the Fifa World Cup 2014 to be chasing around people). That, plus the punishments for whatever cruel deeds I may have committed in my last birth, and my shoulders are sagging slightly with whatever burden she dishes out.

But what if we have absolutely no control over what happens to us – in this birth or the next? What if everything is predetermined by a long bearded someone sitting somewhere on the clouds above us? It would mean that I was destined to be refused a pen by the receptionist and it had nothing to do with my act of refusal on the bus which was destiny as well. (It would also be the reason why I don’t loose weight. What am I supposed to do if many burgers, fries and pizzas are destined to meet their ends in my mouth?)

Either ways, I feel a strong need to please whoever is in charge (Karma/the bearded gentleman) so that I may have better days (if Karma is charge) or the strength to bear whatever is in store (if it all comes down to fate). So I am giving away my copy of “I Love Curry” by Anjum Anand . Yes, it is a used copy, but I didn’t want to overdo things with a brand new book in case anyone got suspicious of my hidden agenda. The book is a delicious collection of 50 curries and 25 accompanying dishes from India. I have tried a few recipes from this book, such as the mutton roganjosh here, and they are a great mix of tastes to suit all kinds of palette.

That’s the book one lucky person will get here. To win,

1) You must have an Indian shipping address

2) Like my FB page here.

3) leave a commenton this post!

The results will be announced next month!

Meanwhile, I have a delicious Shahi Paneer recipe for you. As the name suggests, this is a royal dish. But for those of you watching your waistline, I have included a few low fat options.

  • Servings: 4-serving
  • Time: 40 mins
  • Difficulty: medium
  • Print

It’s been a long time since I blogged, and I would like to thank my millions of considerate readers for not bothering me with emails and comments inquiring about my well being, though I am sure you were worried to tiny bits. Inspite of the long break, I have to start my post on a bitter note. All b

Summary

  • Cuisine: indian
  • Course: main course
  • Cooking Time: 40 mins

Ingredients

400 grams malai paneer (bite sized cubes)
1/4 cup ghee + extra 3 tablespoons ,
1/4 cup raisins (kismis)
1/4 cup cashewnuts
1 cm piece ginger , crushed
cloves 4 garlic , crushed
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
3 pods cardamom crushed lightly  
1 cm cinnamon stick ( broken into small bits) 
2 cloves  
1 bay leaf   
3 small onions roughly chopped and ground into a paste
1 small tomato, pasted
1 teaspoon chili powder  
1 teaspoons coriander powder  
2 cups milk
1 pinch kasuri methi
To taste, salt
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon garam masala
1/4 cup cream
Chopped coriander leaves , to garnish

Steps

  1. Heat a tablespoon of ghee in a small wok. Drop in raisins and let them plump up. Remove quickly with a slotted spoon and keep aside. Fry the cashew nuts till they are light brown and keep aside. Heat 2 tablespoons ghee in a large non stick pan. Fry paneer cubes till they are golden and keep aside.
  2. Heat remaining ghee and let the cumin seeds splutter. Quickly, put in the cardamom, cloves, cinnamon and bay leaf. Don’t let the spices burn. Put the onion paste and fry for a few minutes till it turns pale golden. Add more ghee if mixture dries. Saute the ginger and garlic along with paste and once it turns darker and starts leaving the sides of the pan, reduce flame and add chili powder and cumin powder. Continue sauteing for a minute more and pour in the tomato paste. Mix well. Add the paneer pieces, most of the cashewnuts and raisins.
  3. Pour in one cup of milk, season and wait for the sauce to become thick, stirring every now and then. Mix in remaining milk and kasuri methi. Once the sauce has thickened slightly, sprinkle over garam masala, mix in sugar. Fish out the bay leaf.
  4. Garnish with remaining cashewnuts, raisins, cream and coriander leaves. Serve hot with naan, onion slices and lemon wedges.

Notes:

~ You can replace paneer with tofu

~ You can skip frying the paneer and add it directly to the gravy.

~ Replace ghee with a mixture of ghee and oil or just oil to cut down the calories

~ Cream is optional, and if you decide to skip it, then just use about half a cup more of milk.

~ Check out naan recipes here and here

~ Check out how to make paneer here.

Enjoy!

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