Did I say I get lots n lots of sunlight here in my last post..? May be I was seeing a mirage.....or may I just jinxed it by saying it!! Since then its been raining here in Seattle most days....The sun is resisting to peak out even after some heavy rolled out looks from me.. !!
Thus our weekday biking and weekend photo walk plans drained away, leaving us with only indoor activities...
So to spice up the weekend with all the rainy blooms I made Paneer Butter Masala curry... yess the one that is spiced with a rich tomato gravy which is then thinned with cream to get a decadent sauce....
I have made this sauce several times that refinements I made in the proportions has made this recipe one among the fail proof recipe collections I have.
Whenever I end up with a pile of tomatoes waiting to be used within days I make this curry right away...
For health reasons.. I never add butter (I know it is called Butter Paneer) nor do I add cream... Instead I use vegetable oil and yoghurt.
Also many of the recipes out there uses tomato paste which I never buy or use. I find that increasing the number of tomatoes and cooking it until all the water content is evaporated gives a intense flavor which I enjoy very much...Moreover using fresh veggies always give a nice zing to the curries.
I used store bought paneer.
Cut paneer from the refrigerator into small cubes.
I let the paneer cubes sit in warm water for few minutes till it became soft.
Take the panner cubes from water and dry it slightly, without crumbling it.
To this add little salt, pepper, chili powder and let it marinate.
Inspired and modified from :
Sources: (1) : Soma @ Ecurry
(2) : Alfred Prasad, Head chef at Michelin-starred Tamarind in London's Mayfair
Makhani Sauce/ Butter Sauce :
- Cinnamon stick - 2 cm
- Cardamom pod - 3 slited and crushed slightly
- Bay leaves - 3
- Cloves - 3
- Ginger - 1 tbsp crushed
- Garlic - 1 tbsp crushed
- Chili powder - 1 tbsp
- Tomato - 7 medium sized / 5 large , cut into small pieces comes to around 5 cups or more.
- Honey - 1 tbsp
- Yoghurt - 1/2 cup (or use Cream)
- Kastoori Methi Leaves - 2 tsp
- Butter ( If using )
- Heat oil in a sauce pan. Add crushed ginger and garlic and saute till it turns slightly brown.
- Now add bay leaf, cardamom, cinnamon and cloves and saute for a min.
- When the aroma of spices comes, remove the pan from heat source and add the chili powder into the oil. Saute really fast. Within seconds the chili powder will turn to a darker shade. Add the cut tomatoes and salt and place the pan back to heat source. This should be done quickly or else chili powder will get burned.
- Close the lid and let the tomatoes cook on heat. Stirring once a while.
- Once the tomatoes are cooked. Open the lid, increase the heat and let all the water content evaporates. The consistency will come to a thick liquid. Leaving only like 1/5th the initial amount. It will attain a dark maroon color. Makhani sauce is ready.
- Switch off the heat and let it cool.
- Once it is cooled down completely, blend this into a smooth sauce using a blender.
- Heat some oil or butter (or a combination of both) in a frying pan enough to lightly brown the paneer pieces.
- Add the paneer cubes and lightly brown all sides.
- Switch of the heat source.
- Into this oil-butter (add bit more butter / oil only if required) , add the prepared blended makhani sauce and stir. Once it starts to bubble up, remove the pan from heat source.
- Whisk the yoghurt with little water and add to the makhani sauce and stir fast. Sauce should be at a very low temperature so that yoghurt won't get curdle.
- Once the yoghurt is mixed well into the sauce. Place the pan back on the heat and stir.
- Add honey and kastoori methi. Check for salt and add if necessary.
- If it tastes very sour, add bit more honey.
- Add little water or some more yoghurt if want a thin sauce.
- Add the paneer pieces and mix everything.
- Switch off the heat.
- Serve hot and enjoy...:)