~ Tomato Basil Paneer!!

Tomato Basil is popularly used in Italian dishes – soups, pasta sauce etc. but I decided to try using it in an Indian dish jus to see how it turned out. A few google searches and combining a couple of recipes, I created this magic!

This dish is definitely on the sweeter side, so adding the red chilly flakes helps out balance that.

Ingredients:

  • 4 medium tomatoes blanched and peeled
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 1 big bay leaf, 1 big cinnamon stick, 1 big cardamom, 1 star anise and 1 big dried red chilly
  • 10-12 fresh basil leaves
  • I pack of Nanak Paneer (cottage cheese) soaked in warm water to soften, and then cubed
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon ginger-garlic paste
  • 1/2 cup canned tomato puree
  • Salt to taste
  • Crushed black peppercorns to taste
  • 2 tablespoons red chilli flakes
  • 1/4 cup fresh cream or for healthier option use milk – full fat or 2%

Method:

1) Dice the onions, chop tomatoes and put in a blender jar. Blend tomatoes into a smooth puree.

2) Heat oil in a non stick pan, add the whole masale and ginger-garlic paste and sauté for ½ minute. Add diced onions and sauté till lightly browned.

3) Add freshly pureed tomatoes and canned tomato puree and mix well.

4) Add salt and crushed black peppercorns and mix well.

5) Add paneer and mix well.

6) Break the basil leaves by hand or cut/chop them. Breaking them keeps the taste intact.

7) Add red chilli flakes, basil leaves and cream. Mix well and cook for 1 minute.

Your dish is now ready, serve hot with Naan / Roti or Rice and Enjoy!!

We had it with Garlic Naan and Rice.

Let me know how it turned it 🙂

Until next time, enjoy yummy food!!

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~ Butter Paneer Masala (Vrat Recipe)

Vrat is Hindi for Fasting for a religious purpose and with the festive season (Navratri, Karvachauth, Diwali) around the corner I thought this would be a good recipe to share on the blog since this doesn’t require onions, ginger or garlic – all of which aren’t allowed in fasting days!!

Butter Paneer Masala is a slightly sweet creamy dish of Paneer. This dish can be made fancy restaurant style or like I do, a quick fix on the days you are starving already, thanks to keeping a Vrat!! In my recipe, the flavors are more in line with home style than restaurant style recipe as I have also made it healthy by skipping the cream and using skim milk instead as well as skipping the cashew nuts.

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Serves: 4

Ingredients:

  • Paneer (cottage cheese) 200 grams
  • Oil 4 tablespoons (to make it healthy, I use Olive Oil.)
  • 4 Green Cardamoms
  • 6 Cloves
  • 2 inch Cinnamon Stick
  • 1 big Bay Leaf
  • 2 medium size Green Chilies – chopped
  • 5 medium sized ripe red Tomatoes – pureed
  • Salt to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon Red Chilli Powder
  • 1 teaspoon Garam Masala Powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Turmeric (Haldi)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Coriander Powder (Dhaniya powder)
  • 2 teaspoons Dried Fenugreek leaves (Kasoori methi)
  • 3 teaspoons Honey
  • Skim milk 2 cups
  • 2 tablespoon butter
  • Fresh coriander leaves chopped for garnish

Method:

  1. Cut the paneer into 1 inch cubes.
  2. Heat oil in a non-stick pan. Add green cardamoms, cloves, cinnamon, bay leaf and sauté.
  3. Add green chillies, continue to sauté and add tomato purée along with salt to this and continue cooking.
  4. Now add red chili powder, garam masala powder, haldi, dhaniya powder along with butter, kasoori methi, honey, milk and mix well.
  5. Once the oil and butter separates, add paneer cubes to the gravy and mix. Cook on low flame for about 10 minutes so that the Paneer soaks in the flavor.
  6. Garnish with coriander leaves and your dish is ready to serve!

This dish is best served with Roti, Naan, Kulcha or Parathas, as well as Simple Basmati Rice or Jeera (cumin) Rice. Enjoy and do let me know how you liked it 🙂 I would love to hear!!