Mattar paneer, also known as matar paneer, and mutter paneer is a vegetarian North Indian dish consisting of peas and paneer in a tomato based sauce, spiced with garam masala. It is often served with rice and an Indian type of bread. Various other ingredients are often added, such as “aloo”, corn, yogurt or cream. It’s up to you how you want to cook this version of the recipes.
Ingredients for making the Mutter Paneer
- 250 to 300 grams paneer (cottage cheese)
- 1 cup peas or matar – fresh or frozen
- 1 to 1.25 cup water or 250 to 315 ml water or add as required
- ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
- ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
- ¼ to ½ teaspoon red chili powder
- ¼ to ½ teaspoon garam masala powder or punjabi garam masala powder
- 1 tablespoon malai or cream(optional)
- ½ teaspoon sugar or add as required – optional *check notes
- 2 to 2.5 tablespoon oil or ghee
- a few coriander leaves (dhania patta) for garnishing
- salt as required
Ingredients for making the masala paste
- 3 medium sized ripe red tomatoes – roughly chopped or ¾ cup roughly chopped tomatoes
- 1 medium to large onion – roughly chopped or ½ cup roughly chopped onions
- 1 to 2 green chilies – chopped
- ½ inch ginger – chopped
- 2 to 3 garlic – chopped
- 2 tablespoon roughly chopped coriander leaves – chopped
- 10 to 12 whole cashews – chopped
- 4 to 5 whole black peppercorns
- 2 to 3 cloves
- ½ inch cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
Method of making the mutter paneer
making masala paste
- Combine all the spices in the blender/ grinder and make the paste and keep a side.
- ½ cup chopped onions,
- ¾ cup chopped tomatoes,
- ½ inch ginger
- 2-3) garlic,
- 1-2) green chilies,
- 10-12) chopped cashews
- 2 tbsp coriander leaves
- 4-5black pepper
- ½ inch cinnamon
- 1 tsp coriander seeds and (2-3) cloves.
- Grind all the ingredients to a smooth paste.
- No need to add water while grinding. There should be no small bits and pieces of cashews in the paste.
- Keep the ground paste aside.
Making of mutter paneer
- Heat oil or ghee in a heavy vessel. Hindi/deg, Add 1/2 tsp cumin seeds. Saute the cumin till they start crackling.
- Then add the ground masala paste. Stir. Take care while sauteing as the paste splutters. If there is too much spluttering, then cover partly with a lid till the spluttering stops.
- Saute for 10-12 minutes or more on a low to medium flame till the oil separates from the paste.
- Add all the dry spice powders – turmeric powder, red chili powder, garam masala powder. Stir well.
- If adding cream or malai, you can add now. Stir and saute for a minute.
- Then add the peas or matar. Stir again, Add water and adjust the seasoning.
- If the curry appears thin, then simmer till it reaches the desired consistency. The consistency is medium and neither thick nor thin.
- If the gravy appears thick, then add some water and simmer.
- Add the paneer cubes. Simmer for 1 to 2 minutes on a low flame or till the paneer cubes get cooked. For a slight sweet taste, you can also add sugar just before you add the paneer cubes.
- Don’t overcook as the paneer becomes dense and hard then.
- Garnish it with coriander leaves and Serve mutter paneer with Indian Flatbreads like roti, paratha, naan or with steamed basmati rice, Jeera rice and mutter Pulao.
For making mutter paneer in a pan
- First fry the cumin seeds in a heavy bottom pan.
- Then add the masala paste and saute till oil releases from the sides.
- Add the dry spice powders and stir for a while, Add the mutter, salt to taste and add 1.5 to 2 cups water.
- Close the pan and cook the peas till they become soft. If the curry dries up whilst cooking, add more water.
Important Note: If the tomatoes are sour then sweeten the gravy by adding some sugar or honey.