I make this dish both with homemade or store bought paneer. Paneer is very much like ricotta in texture and is very easy to make. It simply takes milk, yogurt and some lemon juice. Once the milk comes to a boil, you add some yogurt and lemon juice. Once the curd is separated from the whey, it is strained and used for several dishes. It is also available at Whole Foods. Either one works really well.
In this case, I used the homemade version and cooked it with sliced onions and garlic. The main source of flavor is provided by cumin and ajwain seeds. Ajwain has a very distinct pungent taste and a little goes a long way. In case you are not able to find it, eliminate it from the recipe and only use the cumin seeds.
The rest is easy- I cut up a sweet pepper- either red, yellow or orange. With the help of crushed tomatoes, this dish is quick and super flavorful. This is a great entree to make through the week since it takes a short time to cook and it is also ideal for entertaining. Either way, I think you should try it- your family will love it.
- 1½ cups store bought or homemade paneer
- 1 orange/yellow or red pepper, sliced
- 2 tablespoons extra light olive oil
- 1 medium onion, sliced
- 3 garlic cloves, sliced
- 1 teaspoon ajwain seeds
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- ½ cup crushed tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon coriander powder
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon garam masala
- ½ cup cilantro, chopped
In a wok like saucepan, heat the olive oil. Add the ajwain and cumin seeds. Saute for 30 seconds till the seeds begin to sizzle. Add the onion and garlic and sauté for 4-5 minutes. Add the pepper and sauté for a minute. Add the crushed tomatoes, coriander powder and salt and sauté for 5-6 minutes on medium heat. Add the paneer, mix well and lower the heat and cover the saucepan. Cook for 10-12 minutes. Take the lid off and increase the heat. Saute on high heat for 2-3 minutes or more- till the moisture has evaporated. Check for seasonings. Add the garam masala and cilantro for garnish.