Mutter(or Matar) Paneer is a dish with green peas and cottage cheese as its primary ingredients. There are several variants of this dish, today I will share my recipe for the simpler variant with no frills.
- Green peas(baby peas work equally well) – 250gms
- Cottage cheese – 250 gms
- Tomatoes – 2 medium sized
- Onion – 1 medium sized
- Green chillies – 1 to 2 (more if you like it hot)
- Coriander leaves – to garnish
- Cumin seeds – 1 tsp
- Turmeric powder – 1 tsp
- Red chilli powder – 1/2 to 1 tsp
- Coriander(dhania) powder – 2 tsp
- Garam Masala – 1 tsp
- Cut the paneer in cubes and leave it in lukewarm water. This will help the paneer stay soft.
- Put the green peas in warm water.
- Dice tomatoes, onion & green chillies.
- Heat 2 tbsp vegetable (or sunflower or any other oil of choice) in a pan over medium heat.
- Once the oil is hot, add cumin seeds and green chillies to the pan.
- When cumin seeds have cracked (you can see them cracking in the pan and smell them as well), add diced onions.
- Stir around occasionally till the onions turn light golden brown. This should take about 3-5 minutes on medium heat.
- Add tomatoes to this mix. Stir them around.
- Once the tomatoes start losing water(should be about 2-3 minutes), add turmeric powder, red chilli powder, coriander powder and 1 tsp salt.
- Stir this mix and cook till you can see the spices starting to make the pan greasy. You can taste the spice mix at this time and add more red chilli powder if you want. Do not add more salt at this stage.
- Add green peas with the water they were soaking in. Wait until the green peas are semi-cooked, you will know this when some of the peas start getting crinkly skins. Keep stirring occasionally during this process.
- If peas aren’t done but the water in your pan is almost over, add some more water. Warm water is better but cold water would be just fine, it’ll only take a couple of extra minutes to come to boil.
- When peas are ready, add the paneer cubes to this mix without the water they were soaking in. Mix well.
- Let this mix simmer for about 3 – 5 minutes. Keep stirring occasionally during this time. This will ensure that the paneer soaks up all those spice flavours you have in the mix.
- At this stage, check if the gravy is good enough for you. If you want more gravy, add more water and leave it to simmer for some time. If not, continue without adding water.
- Add garam masala to the mix and stir well.
- Simmer for 2 minutes, then taste. Add salt if required.
- Simmer for another 2 minutes, then taste all components(i.e take paneer, peas and some gravy together) and taste. Your tongue is an excellent judge of whether this is ready to eat. If not, and you see no water in the pan at all, add some and continue to simmer till ready.
- Once ready, garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot.
When I cooked it last week(with extra gravy), here is how it came out.
You can enjoy this with rotis, parathas, naans or rice. Try it, and let me know how this recipe worked out for you.