So, on Friday I posted about making Paneer, but then said nothing else about it.
Well, yesterday was busy. I spent quite a lot of the day preparing for having people round for dinner, I made some Naan breads:
……they were good, should have had 6 of them, but alas we had a little whoopsie pre-grilling…. you know how toast always lands butter side down (it only has time for one revolution before it hits the ground), well as it turns out, it’s the same when you are brushing the surface of naan dough with melted butter before putting it under the grill….. Boo.
But what about the Paneer?
Paneer Koftas and Shiitake Mushroom Curry Recipe – taken from Anjum’s Indian Vegetarian Feast by Anjum Anand
50g cashew nuts
8tbsp vegetable oil
3 black cardamom pods
2 large onions, sliced
25g root ginger, grated
4 fat garlic cloves, peeled and grated
4 large tomatoes, quartered
2 tbsp tomato puree
1/2- 3/4 tsp chilli powder
1 rounded tbsp ground coriander
1 3/4 tsp ground cumin
1/3 tsp turmeric
2 tsp garam masala
salt, to taste
5-6 tbsp double cream, plus more to serve
1 rounded tsp dried fenugreek leaves
Koftas and Mushrooms
350g Paneer, preferable homemade
small handful of chopped coriander leaves, plus more to serve
vegetable oil, to deep fry
12 shiitake mushrooms, stalk discarded, thickly sliced –local shop didn’t have any though, so we just used regular chestnut mushrooms
Soak the cashews in water for 15 minutes, then drain. Blitz to a smooth paste with 1-2tbsp water, then set aside.
Heat the oil for the sauce in a large non-stick frying pan. Add the black cardamom and onions, and cook until well browned. Add the ginger and garlic and cook until lightly colouring.
Add the tomatoes, tomato puree, and remaining spices, and cook over a medium heat, stirring, until the water evaporates and the paste releases oil, around 15 minutes. Cook the past for a few more minutes over a moderate to high heat, stirring constantly to get a better depth of flavour. Add a splash of water, then blend to a puree. Add enough water to reach the consistency of single cream, bring to the boil, cover and simmer for 6-7 minutes.
While the sauce is cooking, start to make the koftas. Break up and crumble the paneer until it is fine, then, with the palm of your hand, knead until it is even finer (when you squeeze it together it should hold it’s shape). The more it is worked, the finer and smoother it becomes. Add 1/2tsp of salt and the coriander leaves and form into large marble sized balls:
Take a small saucepan and add enough oil to come 5cm up the sides. Heat to 180C/350F.
Add a batch of koftas so that the pan is not too overcrowded, then cook, turning halfway, until deep golden. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper. Repeat with the remaining koftas.
Remove most of the remaining oil from the pan, leaving around 1-2 tbsp, then add the mushrooms, season lightly, and saute for 4-5 minutes.
Once the curry is done, add the cashew nut paste and cream and bring to a gentle simmer. Add the koftas and mushrooms, return to the boil, then reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 5 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
Sprinkle over the dried fenugreek and chopped coriander and add a swirl of cream.
I then forgot to take a picture.
We had a little leftover though, and Mr M had some for his lunch today:
Clockwise from top left: Paneer Tikka Masala (also made with homemade paneer, but it disintegrated and didn’t work as well); Paneer Koftas and Mushroom Curry; plain old regular boiled brown basmati rice; and Chicken curry (from a jar – I wasn’t messing about with fancy stuff for something I wasn’t going to eat!)
The verdict on this recipe was overwhelmingly positive, even though it kind of look like poop! Mr M and guests all loved it. I was unsure whether it was worth all the faff.
However, apparently it is. I can see me having to make it again sometime!
To go with the above, I also made some chocolate fondant pots from the Gu Chocolate Cookbook. They were pretty easy, and could be made ahead and kept in the fridge, then brought back to room temperature and baked when needed! I did however, forget to take picture. Fear not. I shall probably make them again!