We have been eating mithai and kheer quite a lot from last one month. This is when you know the festive season has begun. It was Janmashtami yesterday, and we both were on fast. I made chenar payesh (kheer made up of paneer) as bhog and had only fruits and some sweets the whole day. For obvious reasons, we felt like having some good spicy masaledar khana. So ended up making some tawa paneer which is really so delicious and absolutely perfect for our craving.
Tawa paneer masala is a very simple and easy to put together dish. This gets ready under 30 minutes if you have some paneer in ur fridge. As the name says, this is made in a tawa. Tawa is generally used in indian homes to make phulkas or parathas. I have used my iron tawa to make this, a non stick pan can be used too. All the tawa dishes are quite famous in Mumbai and pav bhaji masala is the common ingredient that goes in all the dishes. I got to know about all these stuff only after I started cooking. My recipe for tawa paneer masala is almost similar to the masala pav recipe that I shared sometime back. One of my blogger friends Rhydhm tried my masala pav, she mentioned that she added kasuri methi to it and she quite liked it. So I have used that in this dish too and it is such a lovely addition. Thanks Rhydhm! You can check her blog and all the delicious recipes she shares here.
I have made this dish quite a lot of time and I personally like to chop the onions and tomatoes. I don’t prefer using puree or even grated tomatoes or onions for this dish. Though I have used raw paneer, you can fry them too in the same tawa. Do that before you start making the masala. You can chop/grate/puree the onions and tomatoes, refrigerate and make it just before you plan to have it. We are using good amount of tomatoes but if you want the gravy to be a little more tangy, thn add some amchoor powder or lemon juice. The dish goes really well with phulkas or even parathas.
200 gms paneer
1 large onion, finely chopped
3 medium tomatoes, finely chopped
1 medium green capsicum, finely chopped
1 tbsp fresh garlic paste (reduce the quantity if you don’t prefer strong garlic flavor)
1 tsp fresh ginger paste
1 tbsp pav bhaji masala
1 tsp red chilly powder
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 tbsp kasuri methi (slightly roasted)
2 tbsp ghee/butter/oil
salt to taste
Heat the tawa and than add oil or ghee. Let it get heated too nicely and add onions.Keep the flame low. Saute for a few seconds and add ginger garlic paste. Saute till raw smell of ginger and garlic goes away. Add tomatoes, mix, add red chilly powder, haldi and pav bhaji masala. Cook nicely till tomatoes turn soft and oil separates. You will get an amazing aroma and that is when you know your masala is cooked. Add slightly roasted and crushed kasuri methi, combine well.
At this time, add some water (start with a tbsp) as per the consistency you want. This dish is basically semi dry but a dry version can be made too. Just add water as per your requirement and add salt to taste. Mix and let it come to a boil. At last, add paneer cubes to the prepared masala and cook for 2 minutes. Mix very gently or else paneer cubes might break, make sure paneer gets coated well. Garnish with some coriander leaves, mix and done. Serve along with phulkas.