Friday, February 17, 2012

Achari Paneer

Most vegetarians in India, and definitely all Punjabis love their paneer. This cottage cheese made from buffalo's milk is a staple at every meal hosted. Be it breakfast, lunch, dinner or even cocktail snacks!!The blandness of the 'paneer' lends itself beautifully to a host of culinary variations. And one extremely popular Punjabi version is the ACHARI PANEER.
To make this tangy, spicy dish you will need:
Ing: 1 cup paneer, cubed
       1 tsp fennel seeds
      1/4 tsp mustard seeds
      5-6 fenugreek seeds
      1 tsp nigella seeds
      1/2 cumin seeds
      1/4 tsp asafoetida
      1 onion, sliced
      1/2 tsp turmeric pd
      1/2 tsp chilli pd
      1/2 tsp black salt
      3/4 cup fresh yogurt, whipped smooth
      1 tsp chopped mint leaves
      1 tbsp oil
      salt to taste

Method: Heat oil in a pan and sprinkle the asafoetida. Then add all the seeds and let them sizzle. Mix in the chopped onion and saute till transparent. Add the turmeric, chilli pd, black salt and paneer. Mix well and saute for a minute. Add the curds and a sprinkling of whole wheat flour. Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Serve hot with rice, rotis, naan or mint paranthas.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012


Rajasthan is home to unique flavours that transcend the mundane to ethereal. This is one such dish that traditionally originates from the royal family of Rohet Garh, near Jodhpur. This recipe is very versatile and can be adapted to most vegetables and meat.

To make Safed Aloo, you will need:
 Ingredients: 1/2 kg small potatoes, peeled and washed
                    4 tbsp oil
                    3-4 cloves
                    7-8 peppercorns
                    2 black cardamoms
                    2 sticks cinnamon
                    2 bay leaves
                    1 1/2 tbsp ground onion paste
                    1 1/2 tbsp ginger-garlic paste
                    1 cup curds
                    2 tsp coriander seed powder
                    1 tbsp dessicated coconut, mixed with water 
                    1 tbsp poppy seeds, ground to a paste with water.
                    4 dry, red whole chillies
                    1 tsp honey

Method: Soak red chillies in warm water for about 1/2 an hour. Drain and keep aside. Mix the curds and coriander powder. Heat oil in a pan and add the whole spices. When they sizzle, add the potatoes and cook for a couple of minutes. Add the onion and ginger-garlic paste, and cook on medium heat till oil separates. Stir at regular intervals. Now add the coconut and poppy seed pastes and cook for about 5 minutes. Add the curds mixture and cook on low flame till oil separates. Now add 3/4 cup water and the red chillies. Cover and cook till potatoes are done. The potatoes should be tender yet firm, and the gravy should be slightly thick. Stir in the honey and serve hot.