Paneer Butter Masala without Onion and Garlic

In our family, during most of the festivals or on some particular week days (depending on one’s own faith), we mostly eat food without onion and garlic. On such days I look for different ideas or recipes to make the food taste good.

Paneer butter masala is one such recipe that can never go wrong and is an all time favorite among most Indian families. Here is my version of paneer butter masala without onion and garlic. WaterMark_2018-10-30-12-31-31.jpg

Ingredients:

  1. Paneer – 200 grams
  2. Tomato (chopped into bigger chunks) – 3 (medium sized)
  3. Cashews – around 8
  4. Kasoori Methi – 1 tsp
  5. Salt – to taste
  6. Turmeric Powder – 1 tsp
  7. Coriander Powder – 2 tsp
  8. Cumin Powder – 1 tsp
  9. Ginger (chopped) – 1/2 inch
  10. Whole Garam Masala – 1 small cinnamon stick, 1 green cardamom, 1 black cardamom, 2 cloves, 5 whole black pepper
  11. Butter – 1 tbsp+1 tsp
  12. Water – 1 cup

Method of Preparation:

  1. Heat a kadhai/pan on medium flame and add one tsp butter to it. Add the tomato pieces and cashew to it. Sprinkle little salt. It will help soften the tomatoes.
  2. Let the tomatoes cook until tender. Cashew pieces will also become tender by this time. Switch off the flame and let the cooked tomato and cashew pieces cool down.
  3. Then put the cooked tomato and cashew to a blender jar and grind to a fine paste. Do not ever blend when the mixture is hot. Else, it will spill from the blender jar and create a mess in the kitchen.
  4. Now, heat the same pan and add 1 tbsp butter to it. Add all the whole garam masala’s at this stage.
  5. Once the garam masala is nicely mixed with butter to give a nice aroma, add ground tomato and cashew paste to it.
  6. Stir for some time and then add rest of the salt, turmeric powder, coriander powder, cumin powder and cook everything together till oil separates. (You may wish to add red chili powder as well at this stage.)
  7. Now add crushed kasoori methi to the masala and mix.
  8. In the meantime, cut paneer to pieces of desired shape and keep handy.
  9. Check the thickness of the masala that we are cooking and add water according to the desired consistency. I have added one small cup of water to it.
  10. Mix well and let the gravy be cooked for one minute.
  11. Now add the paneer pieces and cook for another three to four minutes.
  12. Switch off the flame and our paneer butter masala is ready to be served. WaterMark_2018-10-30-12-30-55.jpg

Some Tips:

  1. Cooking the tomatoes first and then blending it gives a more vibrant color to the gravy that blending it first and then cooking it.
  2. For crushing kasoori methi, microwave it for 40-50 seconds. And then crush the dried leaves using your fingers.
  3. Do not cook panner for more than five minutes in any gravy. Otherwise it becomes chewy after it cools down.

Cabbage Curry – Without Onion and Garlic

Yet another curry from my kitchen for those no onion and no garlic days.

This is a simple yet tasty curry that goes well with rice, roti or paratha.

Read on further for the recipe.

Ingredients:

  1. Cabbage – 1 (medium)
  2. Frozen green peas – 1 cup
  3. Curry leaves – 7 to 8
  4. Green chilli (slit length wise) – 4
  5. Oil – 1 tbsp
  6. Water – 3 cups
  7. Salt – to taste
  8. Mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp
  9. Cumin seeds – 1/2 tsp
  10. Ginger paste – 2 tsp
  11. Turmeric powder – 1 tsp
  12. Coriander powder – 2 tsp
  13. Garam masala powder – 1 tsp
  14. Freshly grated coconut – 1 cup

Method of Preparation:

  1. Chop cabbage into thin and small strips and wash those properly.
  2. Heat oil in a pan. Add mustard seed and cumin seed once oil is hot enough. Let them splutter.
  3. Add curry leaves, green chillies, and frozen green peas. Saute everything together.
  4. Now add ginger paste, salt, turmeric powder, coriander powder, garam masala. Stir for few minutes.
  5. Now add washed cabbage strips and mix everything so that cabbages are coated with spices evenly.
  6. Now add water and cover the pan.
  7. Let the veggies boil for 15-20 mins under low to medium flame. Do check in between.
  8. Once cabbage becomes tender, remove lid and add freshly grated coconut. Give a good mix.
  9. Our cabbage curry is ready to be served with rice or roti.

Aloo Sabji – No Onion No Garlic

During almost all festivals, we do not have onion and garlic. So we will have to come up with different varieties of spice mixtures in order to bring in the taste in curry and also to thicken the gravy.

This is one such potato curry that everybody loves in my family. It goes well with hot paratha or poori.

Read on for the recipe below.

Ingredients:

For the spice mixture:

  1. Raw rice – 2 tsp
  2. Freshly grated coconut 2 tbsp or chunks of coconut pieces 10-12 pieces
  3. Coriander seed – 1 tsp
  4. Cumin seed – 1 tsp
  5. Red chilli – 1 (can be avoided or increased depending on required spice level)
  6. Raw peanut – 5 to 6
  7. Oil – 1 tsp

For Curry:

  1. Potato – 3 (big)
  2. Salt – as per taste
  3. Tomato – 2 (small)
  4. Turmeric powder – 1 tsp
  5. Garam masala – 1 tsp
  6. Oil – 1 tbsp
  7. Water – 3 cups

Method of Preparation:

  1. Heat pan and add 1 tsp oil. Once oil is hot, all the ingredients mentioned in the spices section one by one.
  2. Roast for five minutes till nice aroma comes.
  3. Then take out on a plate and let it cool.
  4. Once it cools down, put in blender and blend to a less coarse powder. Keep aside.
  5. Now take 1 tbsp oil in a pan and add chopped tomatoes once the oil is hot enough. Add salt, turmeric powder and garam masala. Mix and let the tomatoes become tender.
  6. Now add cut potato pieces and stir for few minutes.
  7. Add our blended spice mixture and give a good stir. Now add in three cups of water and cover.
  8. Let it be on simmer till the potatoes are well boiled.
  9. Once the potatoes are boiled and gravy is of desired consistency, switch off the flame.
  10. Our curry is ready to be served with hot rotis or chapatis or parathas.

Kankada Bhaja (Forest Bitter Gourd Fry)

Kankada bhaja or forest bitter gourd fry is a one of the liked side dishes with white rice amongst the Odiya people. Though this vegetable is from bitter gourd family, it doesn’t taste bitter.

It’s preparation is very simple. Read on for the recipe.

Ingredients:

  1. Kankada (forest bitter gourd) -10
  2. Rice flour – 1 tbsp
  3. Turmeric powder – 1 tsp
  4. Red chilli powder – 1 tsp
  5. Salt – as per taste

Method of Preparation:

  1. Wash the forest bitter gourds thoroughly and cut those into disc like shapes.
  2. Add salt, turmeric, red chilli powder and rice flour to the cut veggies. Toss everything together. If needed add one tsp water in order to make the dry ingredients stick to the cut veggies.
  3. Heat oil in a pan and once oil is hot enough, place the forest bitter gourd pieces in it.
  4. Cover and let the veggies become tender.
  5. Uncover and turn the sides after few minutes. Let both the sides become golden brown.
  6. Now our delicious crispy kankada bhaja or forest bitter gourd fry is ready.

Aloo Puri

Puri or Poori is deep fried Indian bread which is prepared from unleavened wheat flour dough. It’s popular as a breakfast and is generally served with any choicest curry (bhaji).

This Puri is very much versatile and can be prepared by adding any ingredient of your choice to the dough.

Aloo (potato) Puri is prepared by adding mashed boiled potato to the regular dough along with some spices. 

Read on to know the ingredients and the method of preparation.

Ingredients
:

  1. Wheat flour – 2 cups
  2. Salt – 1/3 tsp
  3. Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp
  4. Ajwain – 1/2 tsp
  5. Coriander powder – 1 tsp
  6. Cumin powder – 1tsp
  7. Red chilli powder (optional) – 1 tsp
  8. Kasuri methi – 1 tbsp
  9. Mashed boiled potato – 1 big
  10. Oil – 1 tsp ( to be added to dough)
  11. Oil – for deep frying
  12. Water – 3/4 cup approx.

      Method of Preparation:

      1. To the wheat flour, add salt, turmeric powder, ajwain, coriander powder, cumin powder, red chilli powder, kasuri methi and 1 tsp of oil. Mix everything together. 
      2. Then add mashed boiled potato to the wheat mix and and add water (do not add all the water at once). Knead to a tight dough. Add water gradually as and when required. The dough should be tight in order to make puffed Puris. 
      3. After making the dough, take little oil on the palm and tap the dough from all sides so that it’s covered with a layer of oil.
      4. Cover the dough and let it  rest for 15-20 minutes.
      5. Then make small balls out of the dough and roll those up to a diameter of 6-7 cms. Do not make these very thin. 
      6. Heat oil for frying in a pan. Once oil is hot enough, fry the rolled Puris from both sides till slight brown. 
      7. Take out on paper towel to drain excess oil and serve hot with curry or bhaji of your choice. 

      Cheesy Paneer Bhurji

      Paneer bhurji (mashed cottage cheese curry) is an instant no fuss item which requires minimum effort. Not much of spices are required for this. 

      I have prepared this with a little twist by adding grated cheese. I used mozzarella cheese. However any cheese of your choice can be used here. 

      Paneer bhurji tastes delicious when served hot. Read on further to know the  recipe.

      Ingredients:

      1. Paneer – 200 gms
      2. Shredded mozzarella Cheese – 1/2 cup
      3. Green pea (frozen) – 1/2 cup
      4. Sweet corn (frozen) – 1/2 cup
      5. Tomato (cut into small pieces) – 1
      6. Turmeric – 1 tsp
      7. Shahi paneer masala (optional) – 2 tsp
      8. Salt – as per taste
      9. Red chilli powder – 2tsp (as per taste)
      10. Oil – 3 tsp

      Method of Preparation:

      1. Grate paneer.
      2. Heat oil in a pan. Add tomato pieces. Then add green peas and sweet corn.
      3. Saute for few minutes till the tomatoes are tender.
      4. Add salt, turmeric, shahi paneer masala, red chilli powder. Mix everything well. 
      5. Add grated paneer and mix everything nicely. 
      6. Let it be cooked for few minutes. Do stir in between so that the paneer does not stick to bottom of the pan. 
      7. Now add grated cheese and give a good mix. 
      8. Switch off the flame. Cheesy paneer bhurji is ready to be served. 
      9. It goes well with roti, paratha, naan, puri.