Recipe for a low fat restaurant style matar paneer, made healthier, so it is no longer an indulgence, but transformed into a simple everyday curry.
Hello and glad to see you in the new year. Trying to stick to my resolutions (to blog more regularly) – I was ready with the draft 3 days ago, but that’s when respiratory infection and bronchitis caught up with me and kept me down for over 3 days. In Bombay, the temperature difference is well over 15 degrees between day and night, leading to an epidemic of sorts in respiratory infections. The only times in the last three days I’ve managed to drag myself into the kitchen, is to make a huge pot of Molagu Rasam (Clear pepper soup). I keep warming a cup of this rasam in the microwave, sipping the spicy hot liquid through the day. Apart from that, my diet has generally been antibiotics, antihistaminics, expectorants and mucolytics. Sounds like quite a spread right?? ????
Back to the topic of the post – Matar Paneer, a peas and cottage cheese curry is one dish that is an extremely popular Indian curry . The origins as far as I know are Punjabi in nature, the land where paneer has been predominantly used since many years. If one has paneer and frozen peas, this can be made out of the stuff you’d normally have in your pantry, bailing you out if your fridge is woefully unstocked.
For a person who cooks almost 3 meals each day, it’s odd that I rarely make the typical restaurant style Punjabi dishes like Malai Kofta, Makhanwala and the likes, going mostly with the more earthy simple dishes, where veggies are not drowned in rich gravies and recipes which give veggies more respect than that! However on a whim I decided to try out this matar paneer curry, also since I had nothing else in my refrigerator that evening, except for the staple onions-tomatoes-ginger and garlic. And of course frozen green peas.
The title ‘Low fat restaurant style Matar Paneer‘ does sound like an oxymoron, but I promise you that I have done justice to the title. If you go through my recipe and try it out, you’ll happily agree with me.
More tried and tested recipes for a Punjabi Vegetarian Menu:
Aloo Paratha – Potato stuffed flatbread
Baingan Bharta – Punjabi Roasted Eggplant curry
Dhabewali Dal – Mixed lentils
Equipment needed to make this Restaurant Style Matar Paneer:
Mixer to grind the masala paste
Low Fat Restaurant style Matar Paneer
- 1 tsp oil
- 1 tbsp cashewnuts broken
- 2 medium onions finely sliced
- 3 medium tomatoes coarsely chopped
- 1 tsp grated ginger
- 6 cloves garlic sliced
- 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
- 1 tsp red chilli powder
- 2 tsp coriander powder
- 1 tsp cumin powder
- 1/2 tsp garam masala powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 cup green peas frozen or fresh boiled
- 200 g skimmed milk paneer cut into 1 cm cubes
- 1 tsp kasuri methi dried fenugreek leaves
- To prepare low fat restaurant style matar paneer, start by dry roasting cashews in a pan, until very lightly golden. Remove and allow to cool.
- Heat oil in the same pan. Add the grated ginger, sliced garlic and onions, cooking on a low-medium flame with a pinch of salt for 8-10 minutes until onions are soft.
- Stir in the chopped tomatoes with the turmeric powder. Allow to cook for 7-8 minutes until the tomatoes collapse and turn into a mush.
- Transfer the contents of the pan into a small mixer / blender. Combine all the spice powders- turmeric, coriander, cumin and red chilli powder and blend to a fine puree using up to 1/2 cup water to aid the blending process.
- Pour this puree into the same pan. Season with salt and simmer for 3-4 minutes.
- Add the frozen / boiled green peas to this gravy, along with the paneer cubes and simmer for 5 minutes, so that the spices infuse into the peas and paneer.
- Sprinkle garam masala and crushed kasuri methi. Give it one last stir and remove into a serving bowl.
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[Original post updated on 27 June, 2017 with new photos]
Simply lovely. I love mattar paneer and this really sounds like a lovely delish low fat version. Glad to hear you are feeling better sweetie, was going to send you a happy new year email – but since you are being good with posting thought I’d send my wishes to you and DH here. Hugs always!
Glad you are feeling better darling, take care, and stay warm! Hugs!
Hey Nandita, hope that you are feeling better now. Happy New Year to you and your loved ones, dear! Matar-paneer is usually my quick-fix curry, thanks to the frozen matar :-D. The pictures make me want some more :).
Happy New Year Nandita and glad to know you’re feeling better. I had bronchitis a while back and it’s no fun!
i am on a low fat diet and this seems like a perfect indulgence 😀
Hi Nandita,Wish you a very happy and healthy 2008. Matar Paneer looks awesome .I make it almost the same way except I use milk to thin the gravy instead of water.
Canât wait to try this recipe out. Looks delicious!
You can easily skip the cashew paste and still get the restaurant taste. After sauteeing the onions and tomatoes, add a spoon of curd to give it a creamy texture. Get well soon!
Happy New Year to you guys Nandita! Glad to hear that u are feeling better! Nothing like some spicy pepper rasam for those nasty colds!Matar Paneer is one of the few indian dishes that my kids will eat without whining! Except like u i dont add too much of the cream or malai etc.
Meeta, Sig, Musical – I am almost feeling my old self now! Hope to get back to regular blogging.Nags – do try out :)Anupama – wishing you the same dear! Milk seems a good idea, but im always wary about adding milk to tomatoes -Sorina – Welcome here and thanks for your appreciation.Jyothsana – Nice idea, but since I rarely fatten up any dishes, sometimes i like a bit of indulgence ;)Latha – Hi! Yeah molagu rasam saves the day! It is a pretty kid friendly dish, no green chillies sticking out and quite bland to taste.
love paneer!!! looks very appetizing.. 🙂
Sorry to hear that you were not well.
Hi Nandita! Matar Paneer is one of my fav dishes. I love it to no end :-)Takecare.www.monaafzal.wordpress.com
stumbled upon your blog sometime ago…just love it. tried the mutter paneer today…it is so yummy!! by any chance, do you have a recipe for alu dum…looking for that perfect alu dum recipe.
Happy New Year ! I am sorry for not keeping in touch..let me just blame it onlaziness. I hope you are feeling better now…THis is a recipe I must try..I have tofu in hand
looks as inviting as it can get! glad to know you are better Nandita:)
just what I was looking for. :-)Here’s to you: http://chefatwork.blogspot.com/2008/01/strawberry-muffins.html
I love Matar paneer too much ! Initially I used to cook it with MTR brand ready to cook gravy . then I discovered my own way to make it , thought I make it much different way than you cook, surprisingly mine and yours look so similar in color and consistancy . You can check it on my blog, its just few posts back . Thanks for sharing, I now got another way to make it at home :). -Pooja
Hi Nandita, I hit your blogspot randomly when I was browsing for recipes. I decided to try the matar paneer and it turned out to be very good. You have got a new regular visitor to your blog pages now.
Came here via Desipundit. This dish came out awesome! Thanks!
Hope you’re fully back to normal now, Nandita. This recipe looks delicious, I will certainly give it a try.CheersKamini
Hi Nandita,In the last few months, you may remember receiving an email invitation to become a part of the Foodbuzz Featured Publisher Program. With all the recipe-writing and food photography to be completed, we know emails can easily get lost in the shuffle, so Foodbuzz would like to re-extend our offer of inviting you to be a part of our food blogger network. I would love to send you more details about the program, so if you are interested, please email me at [email protected]. Thank you for sharing so many wonderful, healthy recipes. (Indian food is my favorite!) And congratulations on your Applied Nutrition degree! Cheers!Shannon EliotEditorial Assistant, [email protected]
I tried this and it turned out just great.Thanks!k
This was so simple to make and yet sooo delicious. Thanks a lot for sharing this with us. Looking forward for more low fat recipes : )
G’day from Western Australia!Nandita, this matar paneer recipe is fantastic. I made it for my family last week and for once we had silence at the the dinner table, just lots of thumbs up! I’m making it again for a lunch party tomorrow – it will make a change from an Aussie bbq and certainly surprise the meat-eaters!
Umm and Mizuko,Glad you and your family liked it. And the rest of you whom I haven’t been able to reply individually, thanks for taking time to leave a comment.
I tried your matar paneer recipe and it came out great! Thanks for sharing!-Nandini
This is a gr8 n simple yet tasty recipe!!..tried it with tofu and instead of deep frying the tofu…just bake/broiled it in the oven for 25 mins at 300oF. Turned out yummy. Gr8 recipe..thx …….Preeti
It turned out to be amazing.. I loved it..
Hi Dear Nandita,Really it is a great recipe yaar.I am always in searching for a low fat but delicious food recipes for my family.In that sense this recipe is really a treasure.Today I tried it and came out very very yummy.Your tips are also very useful.Regards,Deepthy
I tried out this recipe last night and it was amazing…tasted soo good…even better than the restaurant ones!! thanks for posting such a great recipe!
Tried this and it was amazing. Everybody including my 6 yrs. old daughter loved it. Thanks you so much.
Nandita, I made this recipe exactly as per ur measures..just fantastic! Both my kids n v both relished it..no frills..keeper recipe! Thankyou for such a simple yet tasty one!
Hi Nandita,Just wanted to share that i have made mattar paneer for last 5 years and hated it everytime coz it never turned out right.Today was just perfect thanks to you :)I’m glad i made a big batch so i can share with some friends too.Thank you for posting this recipe
I made this for dinner and it was delicious. I used canned pureed tomatoes instead of fresh tomatoes because it was what I had on hand. Unfortunately I guessed wrong when it came to how much I should use, so I ended up with way too much! I had to double the spices and peas to compensate and added some cream in the end to make it a little thinner. Wonderful!!! Next time I’ll stick to the recipe 🙂
awesome thanks. I’m always super intimidated by cooking indian food at home. I make curries but I love this dish and wanted to make it healthier — thanks so much! Is it difficult to make paneer with skimmed milk or am I able to get store bought paneer?