Thursday, January 10, 2008

Utterly Buttery delicious!!! ...slurp slurp

My last post had resolutions I had made for this year but I have genuine reasons this time that I couldn’t blog for the entire week. I want to start this year with a traditional Indian recipe which also is popular world-wide. In UK Indian cuisine is known for Murg tandoori, Samosa, Butter chicken & Paneer Makhani. Well I am not a super-blogger so I will write about a single dish but with an alternative for vegetarians too. yeah I am talking about Paneer Makhani & Butter Chicken or Murg Makhani.

It’s a very flavorful curry as well as packed with calories but mind you very "healthy” calories. But many people are put off by its taste in some restaurants. Infact I prefer this from some specific restaurants only. Paneer or farmers cheese is something every vegetarian orders in Punjabi restaurants. Although the taste varies from restaurant to restaurant its best when eaten at home. Here the paneer is so hard & chewy that sometimes I prefer adding tofu over paneer. It’s healthier too. Paneer is either fried or adding directly to the gravy and cooked. I personally do not like fried paneer so I add it to the curry. Murgh Makhani requires a little bit of preparation though this can be prepared at the last minute as well. If you have time marinade chicken for a longer time. The longer you marinate, the better it will taste. Marinate it for at least a 2-3 hrs. I prefer to marinate it overnight. This way the spices & fresh flavors seep into chicken as well as tenderize it. Thick yogurt when mixed with ginger, garlic and cilantro is so flavorful that chicken which is drenched in this has to be bursting with flavor in every bite. Paneer or marinated chicken along with garam masala and blanched-pureed tomatoes has a divine taste. This is not all, it also has cashew paste and fresh cream to make it creamier. And as the name suggests is cooked in butter. You can also cook it in oil but butter lends it a great flavor. I prefer apna desi Amul butter & homemade butter gives THE best taste. Butter also gives a glossy feel to it. The procedure is exactly the same for paneer makhani & murg Makhani. But the quantity varies a little bit in both the cases. Lets move on to the recipe now. Paneer Makhani.

Ingredients
1 cup cubed paneer
2 medium sized blanched* tomatoes
1 big onions, finely chopped
1 tbl spn ginger-garlic paste
2 tbl spn cashew nuts without skin
1 t spn turmeric powder
1 tbl spn garam masala powder ( I use MDH brand)
4-5 tbl spn cream
1 tbl spn dried fenugreek leaves ( kasuri Methi)
3 tbl spn butter
salt as per taste

*Blanched: Boil water till you see bubbles. Now put the tomatoes and cover. Cook for 4-5 minutes. u will see the skin is wrinkled. Discard the water. peel the skin of these tomatoes.

Method:
Discard the seeds from tomatoes and puree the tomatoes. Soak cashew in water for 15-20 mins. Make a paste and keep aside. Heat butter, add onions. Fry till are translucent in color. Add ginger-garlic paste and cook for 3 mins. Now add dried fenugreek leaves. cook for 1 min. Add pureed tomatoes and simmer for 5 mins. Add cashew paste, salt and paneer. cook till done ( about 7-8 mins) on low flame. Now add cream and cook for 3-4 mins. garnish with fresh cream ( optional).

Murg Makhani
1 lb chicken
3-4 medium sized blanched* tomatoes
2 big onions, finely chopped
2 tbl spn ginger-garlic-coriander paste
3 tbl spn cashew nuts without skin
2 t spn turmeric powder
2 tbl spn garam masala powder ( I use MDH brand)
4-5 tbl spn cream
1 tbl spn dried fenugreek leaves ( kasuri Methi)
4 tbl spn butter
1 cup thick yogurt
salt as per taste

*Blanched: Boil water till you see bubbles. Now put the tomatoes and cover. Cook for 4-5 minutes. u will see the skin is wrinkled. Discard the water. peel the skin of these tomatoes. Marinade for chicken Mix yogurt, ginger-garlic-coriander leaves paste & 1 t spn turmeric powder.

Method: Discard the seeds from tomatoes and puree the tomatoes. Soak cashew in water for 15-20 mins. Make a paste and keep aside. Heat butter, add onions. Fry till are translucent in color. Add ginger-garlic paste and cook for 3 mins. Add chicken till almost done. Now add dried fenugreek leaves. cook for 1 min. Add pureed tomatoes and simmer for 5 mins. Add cashew paste, salt and paneer. cook till done (about 7-8 mins) on low flame. Now add cream and cook for 3-4 mins. Garnish with fresh cream (optional).

I served this with store bought naan. I will try & make naan at home next time. This gravy is a great accompaniment to jeera rice along with salad.

7 comments:

Cynthia said...

I'd want to eat the gravy alone because I can imagine how good it is.

Laavanya said...

This truly is a favorite and a classic. I love paneer makhani.

Pooja V said...

Hi Cynthia: Ohh yeah the gravy is just divine but its filler is equally good too.

Hi Laavanya: I love it too & u r absolutely right that it is a classic.

Superchef said...

hmm..this is good...i can make the veggie version for me n the chicken one for my husband!! :)

Pooja V said...

Hi superchef: thanks :) & yeah this is nice tht u will be trying both of my recipes. hee hee thanks for tht too. muah !

Alpa said...

The paneer makhani recipe looks delicious! Don't you love the richness from the cashews?

Seena said...

Pooja,
It has been long since I commented here, sorry, I think u know the reasons..(now only one or two a day.me too have taken resolutions, otherwise can't manage home..:D)
I love your recipes and would check them..