I made Paneer again, following my own advice of mirroring a demo. This time we weren’t in the mood for a curry dish for dinner, since we were a little hung over. This recipe for Paneer Pakora offered us a wonderful treat to satisfy our need for crispy-fried, spicy hang over food. I made a few modifications to this because we didn’t have all the ingredients on hand.
Makes Side-dish for 1 to 2 people
Total Preparation Time – 15 minutes
Paneer – 200 grams (Homemade or store-bought; I used milky mist)
Maida / All purpose flour – 3 tablespoons
[I used all-purpose GF flour, Betty Crocker brand]
Corn flour – 2 tablespoon
Red chilli powder – 2 to 3 tablespoon (according to your spice tolerance)
Cumin powder – 1 teaspoon (If you do not have cumin powder, take 1 tsp of cumin seeds and grind along with ginger garlic and use it)
Ginger – 3 inch long piece
[I did not have fresh ginger, so I used ginger from my spice rack, about 2-4 teaspoons]
Garlic – 4 pods
Curry leaves – From few sprigs (Optional)
[I did not have curry leaves, so instead used Curry Powder from my spice rack, about 1-3 teaspoons.]
Red food color – 2 pinches (optional)
[I did not use food coloring. I feel that it’s an unnecessary additive.]
Salt – As required (approximately 1 and half teaspoon)
Chat masala – 1 teaspoon
Baking soda – 2 pinches (optional)
[I used this because it makes the breading crispier when fried]
Oil – For deep-frying
- Take home-made paneer and chop into cubes or smaller rectangles and set aside. If you are using store-bought paneer then remove package, wash in running water and then proceed.
- Now add the chopped paneer cubes in warm water (not hot water) leave soaked for about 10 minutes. Then drain water.
[I skipped soaking the paneer in water because I didn’t want it to lose its firmness since mine was homemade.]
Peel garlic and scrape of ginger skin. Chop into smaller pieces and grind into fine paste and set aside. (If using cumin seeds instead of cumin powder, you can grind it along with ginger and garlic)
To a bowl, add maida, corn flour, red chilli powder, cumin powder, ginger garlic paste, red food color, salt, baking soda and mix well. Add some water and make a thick batter of dosa batter consistency.
Now add the paneer cubes into the batter and mix gently, until the batter coats the pieces well.
Now place a pan on flame and pour enough oil into it for deep-frying the paneer pieces.
When the oil turns hot gently drop the paneer pieces into it and fry until it turns reddish and crisp. It will take just 2 o 3 minutes. Do not fry for long, else paneer pieces will become hard, also do not keep stirring it will cause the outer layer some off from the paneer pieces.
Fry in batches do not crowd the pan as the pieces will get stuck to each other. (You can also fry a few sprigs or a handful of curry leaves with each batch of paneer 65 to get a nice aroma if you wish)
Remove from oil using a slotted spoon and place on a tissue paper to blot out extra oil.