There was an interesting discussion on Kadhai Paneer and authenticity the other day . That got me thinking and I read up a few books and zoomed into Jiggs Kalra's book to go into the recipe in detail and also understand our cuisine better . Jiggs Sir made some interesting observations - the obvious like recipes were handed down from generation to generation , but never recorded ( literacy ) . This is the reason that Indian culinary art despite 1000 of years of refinement is relevantly unknown as compared to the cuisines say of France or China . As as a result of this non documentation every recipe is open to interpretation , however innovation is often mistaken for originality !
So let's get cooking Kadhai Paneer which Jiggs Sir describes as chili hot , semi dry and colorful in his cookbook PRASHAD .
Note - this is a rustic dish , that's why we chop , not liquidize tomatoes to keep the textures and flavors.ONLY 25 Grams Capsicum is added , that too right in the start , that flavors the oil and that is where the role of capsicum ends . It's not a a vegetable here , but a flavoring agent. I make this pount to differentiate between Kadhai Paneer and Paneer Silma Mirch / Capsicum.The timings aren't correct , I took an hour nearly to make this delicious gravy masala ...
600 Grams Paneer - Cut to size.
3 Tablespoons Ghee ( 40 Grams ).
1 Capsicum ( 25 Grams ) - Remove seeds and make julienne / thin long strips
5 Whole Red Chilies.
2 1/2 Teaspoons Coriander Seeds.
4 Teaspoons Ginger ( 15 Grams ).
550 Ml Kadhai Gravy ( recipe below )
A pinch of Kasoori Methi .
1 Teaspoon Garam Gravy Masala.
Scrape ginger , reserve some for garnish , mince the rest. Pound whole red chilies and coriander seeds together.
Heat Ghee , add capsicum , and saute for 30 seconds over medium heat. Add pounded masala and ginger , cook 30 seconds , then add kadhai Masala , bring to a boil till fat leaves the sides. Now add paneer , cook 2-3 minutes , sprinkle kasoori methi and garam masala , adjust seasoning and to serve garnish with ginger julinnes and coriander greens .
Kadhai Gravy Masala:
6 Tablespoons Ghee ( 75 Grams )
5 teaspoons Garlic Paste ( 30 Grams ).
7 1/2 Teaspoons Coriander Seeds ( 15 Grams ).
10 Whole Red Chilies.
4 Green Chilies.
1/2 Cup Ginger ( 45 Grams ).
675 Grams Tomatoes.
1 Tablespoon Kasoori Methi ( 5 Grams ).
1 Teaspoon Garam Masala
Pound coriander seeds and red chilies.
Wash chop green chilies ,ginger and tomatoes .
Heat ghee , add garlic paste , saute over medium heat till light brown.Add pounded spice , saute another 30 seconds then green chilies and ginger , cook another 30 seconds and lastly add tomatoes and bhuno till fat separates.Lastly add all spice and take off the fire.This is a delicious Master Sauce / Masala , I made it in twice this quantity and have it in the fridge and will use it with other recipes soon.