Saturday, 16 February 2013

Tomato Cashew Paneer

Cooking for Don has it's ups and downs.  I can count on two fingers the foods he won't eat (peanut butter and pork belly).  Almost everything I make is appreciated and happily consumed.  But.. he never gets excited about food.  He doesn't want to plan meals or talk ingredients or dissect some dish at a restaurant.  He just wants to be nourished with healthy tasty food. The advantages to this are that I always get to cook what I want. As long as it isn't high calorie or smothered in sauce, he's game to eat it. 


When I found this locally made paneer at a grocery store near home, I was pretty pumped.  I've been meaning to try making this at home for awhile now.  Indian inspired foods are one of Josilin's favourites so I felt confident this would be wonderful for a family meal.  Served with some tandoori chicken, hot fresh naan bread, a carrot and summer squash salad this meal was a home run in my eyes.  The fresh vegetables were a great counterbalance to the rich sauce.  The naan sopped up the sauce beautifully.  What kid doesn't love a chicken drumstick?
Don served himself and loaded up with the paneer dish.  After his first bite he said, "this chicken seems a little odd."  I reminded him that it was in fact cheese, not chicken and his eyes widened. I guess he wasn't listening before eating, when I was going on and on about the new ingredient I found.  So it seems there are actually three foods Don doesn't like: paneer, peanut butter and pork belly.  (wow- I like that "p" alliteration!)  Don't let this stop you from trying it though!  The cashews bring a nice richness to the sauce and the paneer is wonderfully chewy and light.  It makes a great addition to any Indian meal and is a good vegetarian alternative as well.  Guess the leftovers will only be going in Josilin's lunch this week.

Tomato Cashew Paneer

adapted from Dolce Dente

1-2 Tbsp coconut oil
3 cups cubed paneer
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp garam masala
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1 can tomatoes (28oz)
1/4 cup cashews
2 Tbsp cilantro
1 tsp honey
1/2 cup Greek plain yogurt

In a cast iron pan, melt coconut oil on med-high heat.  Add paneer and brown and both sides, about 5 min each.  Remove from pan and reserve.
Ensure pan is still oily (adding more if none left), and saute onions until translucent.  About 10min.  Add garlic and saute 2min more.  Add spices and saute 1min more.  Add canned tomatoes, cashews, cilantro and honey.  Reduce heat to low and simmer about 30min.  Add water if sauce becomes too thick.
Remove from heat and transfer to blender or food processor.  Add yogurt and puree.  Return sauce to low heat and add paneer.  Reheat until warm, about 3-5min.
Enjoy on a bed of rice or with hot naan bread.  Garnish with additional cilantro or hot sauce.

No comments:

Post a Comment