Kadai is a Indian wok (similar to a wok). This is the most commonly used utensil in Indian cooking. Kadai paneer is cottage cheese cooked in a kadai with tomatoes, onions, capsicum, and a blend of Indian spices. The main flavour of this dish comes from freshly pound spices. And if you don’t have a kadai, just cook it in a fry pan – it would still taste amazing.
To make kadai paneer, I dry roast coriander seeds and dry red chilli, and pound them coarsely. This freshly ground spice mix makes the dish extremely flavourful and aromatic. I then sauted ginger, onion, and tomatoes. Once the tomatoes cooked through, I added this spice mix along with capsicum. I finished it with garam masala, fried paneer cubes and dry fenugreek leaves.
Have to tried making pizza with this dish? Yes that’s right! Kadai paneer pizza – a must try. Click here for recipe.
Paneer (cottage cheese) – 250 gms, cubed
Dry coriander seeds – 2 tbsp
Dry red chilli – 2
Red onion – 2 medium, diced
Tomatoes – 2 medium, finely chopped
Ginger – 1 inch, finely chopped or coarsely grated
Red chilli powder – ½ tsp
Capsicum – 2 medium, diced
Dry fengreek leaves – 1 tsp
Garam masala powder – ½ tsp
Salt – to taste
Oil – 3-4 tbsp
Coriander leaves – for garnish
- Dry roast the coriander seeds and dry red chilli in a fry pan. Cool and pound them in a mortar pestle. Set aside
- Heat oil in a kadai or fry pan. Lightly fry the paneer cubes and set aside
- In the same pan, add ginger and fry for a minute. Add onions and fry until it turns translucent.
- Add the tomatoes, salt and red chilli powder. Mix well and cook until the tomatoes are cooked completely and oil starts to separate (about 5-6 minutes)
- Add the pounded spices and mix well
- Add the capsicum. Cook for a further 3-4 minutes
- Add the garam masala and mix well. Add the paneer cubes
- Briefly dry roast fenugreek leaves, crush and add. Mix well and turn off the heat
- Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot with naan
- Skip the red chilli powder and use just one dry red chilli for a milder version
- You can use tofu if paneer is not available
- You can skip lightly frying the paneer first and directly use the paneer cubes