Buttery Soft Paneer, crunchy onions, masaledar (spicy) gravy – just one word comes to my mouth – Ahhaaahahaa 😀
This recipe is truly a show-stealer. Make it in any celebration, serve it to your guests at the house parties, or just prepare on a regular weekend, this not just steals the heart but satisfies you deep within. After having it, you will end up with a fulfilled stomach and a big smile on your face. Guaranteed!
Let me confess something first. I am not a fan of paneer. I only like Matar Paneer and that’s it. Please don’t hate me because my husband compensates for this with his overlove for paneer. He can have paneer all day, every day. Literally. But since I am the home chef, I don’t make different recipes of panner at home.
Once he ordered Paneer Tikka Masala from a restaurant. He was very excited to have it. The order arrived and with a big smile on his face, he served himself. His happiness & excitement were totally gone when he saw just 4 pieces of paneer in the Dabba. Thankfully, I ordered something else for myself so he didn’t need to share those 4 pieces. But I felt bad for him. I have a good heart you know 😀
Then I decided to make this recipe for him. Happiness and excitement are back again in his life.
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STEPS TO MAKE THE RECIPE
1 – MARINATION
Delicious marination is the soul of this recipe. But just seasoning panner and other veggies with different spices and curd is not enough. You need to coat them and let them rest to develop more flavors. The acidic ingredient (curd or yogurt) is very important in marination because it makes the way for all the flavors to seep into the veggies and paneer. You need patience. But we will do anything for a tempting meal. Right?
2 – DRY ROASTING
There are many ways to cook or dry roast the marinated pieces. Traditionally, it is done in a clay oven or tandoor. You get a nice earthy flavor in that. But who has that in our modern homes? I don’t. But I have my favorite grill sandwich maker which opens to 180 degrees and is perfect to make paneer tikkas. I put the marinated pieces on a skewer and roast them on it. It doesn’t stick and comes out well roasted.
You can even do the same thing on a pan. Just place all the marinated pieces on a greased pan or tawa and roast them from all sides. It is very easy. You can even put all pieces on a skewer and directly cook them on the gas flame. It gives a nice charred flavor too. But just be careful with this. Cover the area around the gas burner with a foil because when you roast, the juice of the veggies and marination drips and it may ruin your gas stove. Covering also means less cleaning which we all need in our life.
3 – GRAVY
The gravy of paneer tikka masala is made of onion tomato. It is creamy and spicy too. But you can make the gravy as you like it. In this recipe, I added curd for creaminess and a hint of tanginess. I balanced that with a pinch of sugar. It tastes delicious. You can even make the gravy with cashew paste or milk cream. You can make it without onion. Gravy with just the tomatoes also tastes good.
CAN WE MAKE IT VEGAN?
Yes. Of course.
In the same recipe, just replace the paneer with firm tofu. Instead of dairy curd, you can use vegan curd.
You can make a creamy gravy using cashew paste, coconut milk or coconut cream, or any vegan curd too. Don’t be afraid to experiment.
HOW TO SERVE?
To have the best experience, serve it hot. It tastes best with any kind of Indian bread – chapati, paratha, naan, or tandoori roti. We also serve it with some jeera rice or simple steamed rice. For the salad, we like it with some pickled onion. Or if you don’t have that, just serve it with some thinly sliced onions.
I always make it a little extra because the next day it gets more delicious. Overnight, all the flavors marry and mingle with each other and make the gravy even more flavorful. Try that and thank me later.
Now grab all the ingredients because you are ready to make a lip-smacking paneer tikka masala at home. If you like the recipe, please share the photo on Instagram and tag us too @marriedfriends. We just love to see your recreation of our recipes.
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Love from us.
Richa & Jatin