Crumbled Paneer with Fresh Mint, Cilantro and Spiced Green Peas

Visit the Indian Food Glossary for information on the ingredients in this recipe
Crumbled Paneer with Fresh Mint, Cilantro and Spiced Green Peas

Although I'm not a vegan, I do find as the years go by that I have been moving away from including dairy in many of my meals. But one dairy food that I can never see myself giving up is paneer cheese — also known as Indian cottage cheese, it's a soft but firm, creamy and succulent fresh cheese that doesn't melt when cooked, making it a wonderful addition to curries and other hot foods, or the main feature in its own dish.

Paneer cheese is the star ingredient of this vibrant but simple curry that you can put together in half an hour. The paneer is crumbled and simmered with tomatoes, fresh herbs, tender sweet green peas, and crushed seeds. Crushing the cumin and coriander seeds adds distinction to this dish, as the aromatic flavors of the seeds assert their presence with the bold flavors of fresh mint and cilantro. All the tastes mingle so nicely with the creamy paneer cheese in a dish that dances with flavor, fragrance and color.

Crumbled Paneer with Herbs, Peas and Spices

Note: To crush the cumin and coriander seeds, use a mortal and pestle or place the seeds on a large cutting board and crush with the back of a knife with a long, large blade. You can also quickly pulse in a spice or coffee grinder, but don't grind until the seeds turn into a powder.

Crumbled Paneer with Fresh Mint, Cilantro and Spiced Green PeasCrumbled Paneer with Fresh Mint, Cilantro and Spiced Green Peas
Recipe by
Cuisine: Indian
Published on March 30, 2021

Simple and quick paneer cheese curry with tomato, herbs, peas and fragrant spices

Preparation: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 15 minutes

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  • 2 tablespoons ghee, butter or oil
  • 2 shallots, finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons cumin seeds, crushed
  • 1/2 tablespoon coriander seeds, crushed
  • 2 cups frozen green peas
  • 12 oz (350 g) paneer cheese, crumbled
  • 1 small tomato, finely chopped
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup fresh mint, finely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 2/3 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 small red bell pepper, seeded and roughly chopped
  • 2 to 3 red chilies, seeded and minced
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste
  • In a large non-stick skillet, heat the ghee, butter or oil over medium heat. When hot, add the crushed cumin and coriander seeds and shallot to the pan, and sauté for a few minutes until the spices are fragrant and the shallot begins to brown on the edges.

  • Stir in the peas, cover the pan, and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the peas are just tender, roughly 5 minutes.

  • Now stir in the paneer cheese, tomato, water, cilantro, mint, turmeric, paprika, garam masala, red peppers and chilies, and simmer for another few minutes until the mixture has thickened and is warmed throughout.

  • Serve hot.

Makes 4 to 6 servings

Paneer and Peas

Other dishes featuring the lush goodness of paneer from Lisa's Kitchen:
Creamy Mattar Paneer
Butter Paneer Masala
Shredded Paneer Cheese with Tomatoes, Chilies, Mushrooms and Chickpeas
Paneer Cheese Cubes with Sun-Dried Tomatoes

Audio Accompaniment: Adrift by loscil

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