Paneer kalimirch

“You don't have to cook fancy or complicated masterpieces - just good food from fresh ingredients.” ― Julia Child.
This is essentially the thought behind this dish...Its a simple , hearty dish that calls for easily available ingredients..Its a versatile dish that one can serve with rice,pulao or any kind of Indian bread like naan, parathas or plain rotis. I make this dish all the time coz it hardly takes any time , is a no brainer, and is simply a good dish made from fresh ingredients!! 
This was part of my Eid special menu for many reasons :
# It was easy and interesting enough to make paneer seem different and with razzmatazz of some sort!
# I love a spicy paneer gravy with garlic naan more than anything else...and this dish hits all the right notes!
# Its delicately flavored, the peppers come across strong yet held back...and it makes an amazing main dish. 
# It takes barely 30 mins to make... 
# everyone Loves it... thats right... the guests, family, the husband and even my 2 yr old love it when i lift the lid and reveal the contents inside by breaking out the dough... YUM!

PANEER KALIMIRCH...or as I like to call it Paneer manpasand because I like it so much!!
This is not your usual paneer in tomato gravy. If you live in India, Paneer or cottage cheese is a way of life right from the age of 2!
I have always been fond of milk products...but surprisingly can't stand milk on its own!!
My mom having found out this way early in my life, fed me a diet that was rich in calcium and in which I didn't have to drink milk forcibly!
Paneer or cottage cheese, cheese, curd , mishti doi ..these were and still are regular affairs...
I think a lot of what we eat and love to eat stems from what our moms fed us as a child!!

Here's how you go about making this amazingly favourful Cottage cheese or paneer curry....


Paneer 1 inch cubes 400 gm
Onion 2 medium.. sliced.
ginger 1 inch
garlic 5 cloves
bay leaf 2
green chillies 2-3
oil to deep fry
ghee 2 tsp
cinnamon stick 1 inch
green cardamom 3-4
cloves 3-4
cumin powder 1 tsp
coriander powder  2 tbsp
yoghurt whisked 1 cup or 250 ml
salt to taste
black pepper crushed 1 tbsp
fresh corainder chopped 2 tbsp
fresh mint chopped 1 tbsp
fresh cream 1/2 cup
garam masala powder 1 tsp
kashmiri lal mirch powder 2 tsp


Grind ginger, garlic and green chillies to fine paste.
Deep fry sliced onions till golden brown, drain on a tissue, grind to a fine paste.  if needed use 1 tbsp water.
Preheat oven to 180c.
Add ghee to a narrow mouthed handi.. add the whole spices.
add the ginger garlic chillie paste and saute on high heat for a min
add the browned onion paste, yoghurt, the masala powders, salt to taste. stir well.
Add one cup water and let it cook on high heat till it starts to boil. keep stirring frequently.
Add paneer pieces, chopped corainder, mint leaves, cream and crushed peppercorns.
Sprinkle the garam masala powder.
Cover the handi with a tight fitting lid. Seal with dough or aluminium foil
Place the sealed handi in the preheated oven.
Cook for 15 mins.
Open the handi just before serving and serve immediately!

Enjoy the wonderful delicate fragrance of this spicy paneer gravy cooked on dum with Indian flat breads or Pulao...

  • Paneer (cottage cheese) 1 inch cubes
    400 grams
  • Ginger
    1 inch piece
  • Garlic
    4-5 cloves
  • Green chillies
  • Oil
    to deep fry
  • Onions sliced thinly
    2 medium
  • Ghee
    2 tablespoons
  • Bay leaves
  • Cinnamon
    1 inch stick
  • Green cardamoms
  • Cloves
  • Yogurt whisked
    1 cup
  • Coriander powder
    2 tablespoons
  • Cumin powder
    1 teaspoon
  • Salt
    to taste
  • Fresh coriander leave finely chopped
    2 tablespoons
  • Fresh mint leaves chopped
    1 tablespoon
  • Fresh cream
    1/2 cup
  • Black peppercorns crushed
    1 tablespoon
  • Garam masala powder
    1 teaspoon


Step 1

Grind ginger, garlic and green chillies to a fine paste. Heat oil in a kadai and deep fry onions till golden brown.

Step 2

Drain and place on absorbent paper and cool. Grind the fried onions with two tablespoons of water to a smooth paste.

Step 3

Preheat oven to 180C. Heat pure ghee in a narrow mouthed handi, add bay leaves, cinnamon, green cardamoms and cloves.

Step 4

Stir-fry briefly. Add ginger-garlic-green chilli paste and sauté on high heat for half a minute.

Step 5

Add the brown onion paste, whisked yogurt, coriander powder, cumin powder and salt to taste. Stir well, add one cup of water and cook on high heat, stirring frequently, till the gravy starts boiling.

Step 6

Add paneer pieces, chopped coriander and mint leaves. Stir in the fresh cream and crushed black peppercorns.

Step 7

Sprinkle garam masala powder. Cover the handi with a tight-fitting lid and seal using whole-wheat dough (atta) or alternatively, seal tightly with aluminum foil.

Step 8

Place sealed handi in the preheated oven and cook for ten to fifteen minutes. Open the handi just before serving and serve immediately.

Chef Tip

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