Wednesday, December 12, 2012


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The first time I tasted Kadai Paneer was almost a decade ago when my mom prepared it after watching a cookery show.We instantly fell in love with the curry, as it was lip smacking good with all the freshly pound spices which takes the curry to another level, in my view.This recipe was a keeper and it got transferred to all my hand written cook books (only the trusted recipes find their way in my hand written cook book!) over a period of time and I thought this is the time to get its place in my virtual cook book - my blog.You can see my hand written cook book in this picture which I treasure from more than 5 years.
I have modified the recipe a little bit over a period of time.The original recipe used fenugreek seeds in the masala which got replaced with fenugreek leaves in the gravy and also few minor changes in the process of roasting vegetables which yields into a delicious curry.
When I saw the Kadai Paneer recipe in Anu's space, I was very happy to see a version similar to what I prepare at home and of course with a few tweaks, as every one has their own personal touch which makes the recipe special.I liked her idea of frying the vegetables individually and coating each vegetable with the freshly pound spices, which is slightly different in my case as I roast all the vegetables at one go, and coat them with spices in the end.
I love the Kadai Paneer semi-dry,I do not like it in a gravy form or a stir fry form.The moist paneer pieces and the crisp roasted vegetables are coatedt with a light coat of aromatic spices and a mildly spiced gravy, the taste of which lingers for a long time.If you taste this one, I am sure you would make it again and again.It is really that good,don't trust me? then give it a try and let me know your views. 

Kadai Paneer Recipe - Restaurant Style:
(serves 3-4)

250 gms Homemade Paneer (Cottage cheese) (or store bought),cubed
1 small Red Capsicum,seeded and cubed
1 small Green Capsicum,seeded and cubed
1 small Yellow Capsicum,seeded and cubed
1 medium Onion,peeled and cubed
1 big Tomato,seeded and cubed
2-3 tbsp fresh Curd,beaten
2 tbsp chopped fresh Coriander
1 tsp Kasuri Methi(dried Fenugreek leaves)
1 Bay leaf 
Salt to taste
2 tbsp Oil

for the Onion-Tomato masala:
1 medium Onion,chopped
1 big Tomato,chopped
3-4 Garlic pods
3/4" Ginger,roughly chopped
1 tsp Red chili powder
1/3 tsp Turmeric powder
1/4 tsp Sugar
Salt to taste
1 tsp Oil

for Kadai masala:
1 1/2 tbsp Coriander seeds
1 1/2 tsp Cumin seeds
7-8 black Pepper corns
2 Red chillies
1/2" Cinnamon
2-3 Cloves

to make Kadai Masala:
  • Dry roast coriander seeds,cumin seeds,black peppercorns,red chillies,cinnamon and cloves separately until they turn slightly brown and starts releasing the aroma.
  • Cool them and pound it in a mortar and pestle to a coarse masala.You can even grind it in mixer to a coarse powder but I prefer to pound my spices manually for this recipe.
to make Tomato-Onion masala:
  • Heat 1 tsp of oil and add garlic,ginger and fry for a couple of minutes.
  • Add chopped onions and fry until they turn pink.
  • Add tomatoes and fry well until the tomatoes turn mushy.
  • Add turmeric powder,little salt,red chili powder,sugar and cover it and cook well for a couple of minutes.
  • Cool the mixture and grind it to a fine paste and keep it ready.
to roast Vegetables:
  • Heat 1 tbsp oil and add chopped paneer pieces and fry them until you see light golden spots.You should not fry them for long,otherwise the paneer will become hard.So just fry for a minute on either side.Remove and keep it aside.
  • In the same pan add little more oil if required and add the cubed bell peppers and fry for a couple of minutes.Maintain the crispy ness of the bell peppers which is a key taste for the curry.
  • Add cubed onions and fry for a minute along with the bell peppers and add seeded and cubed tomatoes at the end and fry for a minute.Take care that onions should be crispy and also the tomatoes should be slightly cooked and not become mushy and also should not loose their shape.
  • Now add fried paneer pieces to the pan and add the kadai masala and required salt and mix the vegetables and paneer pieces well until the masala coats all the vegetables and paneer.Leave them aside for sometime.
to assemble the kadai paneer:
  • Heat 1 tbsp oil in a kadai and add bay leaf and ground tomato-onion mixture and fry well.
  • Add kasuri methi(slightly press it in between your fingers before adding) and required salt(remember you added salt to the veggies and also the ground tomato-onion mixture early).Cook the mixture until it is very thick.
  • Reduce the flame or remove the kadai from the flame and add beaten curd to it and cook for another few minutes.The gravy should be thick enough to coat the vegetables,but it should not be of flowing consistency.
  • Add the roasted vegetables and paneer pieces(coated with the masala) to the gravy mixture and mix well.
  • Add coriander at the end or either garnish the kadai paneer with coriander at the end.
Serve it hot with Naan/Roti/Kulcha/Chapati/Paratha.It tastes very delicious and pair up beautifully with any flat bread or pulao.I served them with laccha paratha.
  1. Use freshly pound masalas (kadai masala) and do not replace them with either ready powders or Garam masala .The taste definitely differs.
  2. Maintain the crispyness of bell peppers and onion while roasting,which makes the bite of them more delicious in the curry.
  3. Malai paneer tastes quite good in the recipe.If you do not get hold of malai(soft) paneer,you can keep your paneer pieces soaked in warm water after they are roasted.This will make the paneer pieces very moist.

Check out other Paneer recipes in my blog:
  • Paneer Butter Masala - Restaurant style!!
  • Paneer Modak Peda
  • Paneer Tikka 
  • Paneer Bhurji
  • Paneer Jalfrezi
  • Paneer Sabzi | Simple Paneer Curry
  • Palak Paneer
  • Paneer Makhani/Paneer Makhanwala
  • Grilled Corn-Palak Paneer | Makai Palak Paneer
  • Matar Paneer



    Kavi | Foodomania said...

    That's a wonderful recipe Pratibha! :) Will be adapting your Masala recipe into mine :)

    Christmas Cook Off Contest!

    amna said...

    nothing like freshly ground spices to make this dish. it's a favourite in my home!

    Kaveri Venkatesh said...

    A favorite with my family as well...the freshly ground spices make it really flavorful

    Jeyashris Kitchen said...

    Very tempting and yummy Kadai Paneer, Loved the way youmade it, Will give this version a try

    Sangeetha Nambi said...

    Perfectly done with Freshly grounded spices...

    great-secret-of-life said...

    very tempting kadai paneer with all the fresh herbs

    Swathi said...

    Kadai paneer looks delicious.

    Chitra said...

    tats a nice recipe. me too planning to try.. loved ur clicks :)

    virunthu unna vaanga said...

    lovely one n tempting...
    Ghee Rice

    Lakshmi said...

    waaaa!slurrrrrp! I am hungry now :)

    Sayantani Mahapatra Mudi said...

    i have a same kinda hand written recipe book. love this kadhai paneer. and freshly ground spices takes it to another level.

    Aruna Manikandan said...

    looks delicious prathy :)

    Unknown said...

    I love this side and you have made it look super inviting dear

    Unknown said...

    Lovely dish...lovely clicks...

    Rachana said...

    Freshly ground spices gives a lovely flavour to any dish. A great paneer recipe. Loved it.

    Priya Suresh said...

    Never get bored of this flavourful kadai paneer, highly inviting.

    divya said...

    slurp...looks very tempting...

    Indian Khana said...

    Kadai paneer, woh roti n salad ....kya baat hai ...looks so yum

    Spandana said...

    Looks very good. Freshly ground spices indeed makes it more delicious.
    BTW your writing is very nice :)

    Madhavi said...

    Oh this kadai paneer looks amazing!!!

    Unknown said...

    Delicious Kadai paneer. This is one paneer dish my entire family agrees on :-)

    Raks said...

    I always love kadai paneer over any other paneer dishes. Love the dhaniya flavour the best. Nice recipe

    Hema said...

    Love this and especially the way you have presented it, simply awesome, btw you have jotted down the recipes so neatly, wish I did like that, mine is always scribbled..

    maha said...

    healthy and hot paneer dish.great.....nice blog vth tasty recipes..
    BTW visit my space if gets sum time n check out my new facebook page dear..

    Unknown said...

    Perfectly made & presented, totally inviting

    Blog -
    Facebook Page -

    Claire said...

    that's a good one..super delicious

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