Paneer has always been my top favourite right from my childhood. I love everything made using paneer. I still remember, as a child when we went out for dinner, my dad used to first order paneer chilli for me. Sometimes he would also surprise me by getting a parcel home for my dinner. Nostalgic ! Food does connect us to many such memories isn’t it?
This recipe is Indian Chinese Paneer Chilli Dry. As this is dry and is suitable for a starter, I have deep-fried the paneer pieces. If its Paneer chilli gravy, I would not recommend frying the paneer. You can just add the fresh cube of paneer in the prepared sauce and mix well. So, both my paneer chilli dry and paneer chilli gravy is totally different. I shall come up with the paneer chilli gravy sometime soon.
For crispy paneer :
Paneer / Cottage cheese – 200 gms (chopped lengthwise)
Maida/All purpose flour – 2 tbsp
Cornflour – 1 tbsp
White pepper – 1/2 tsp
Red chilli powder – 1/2 tsp
Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
Oil for deep-frying
Salt to taste
For Chilli dry:
Onion – 1 small (chopped lengthwise)
Garlic – 4 pods (finely chopped)
Ginger – 1″ piece (finely chopped)
Green Capsicum – 1 small (chopped lengthwise)
Spring onions – a few chopped approximately 2 tbsp
Green chilli – 4 ( slit and roughly chopped into 2″)
Red chilli sauce – 1/2 tbsp
Green chilli sauce – 1/2 tsp
Tomato ketchup – 1 tbsp
Schezwan sauce – 1/2 tsp (totally optional)
For Garnish :
Spring onion greens – few chopped
Part 1 : Marinating the paneer pieces
Part 2 : Mixing the sauces and keeping it ready
Part 3 : Frying paneer and sauteing them in sauce
Part 4 : Garnishing
Part 1 : Marinating paneer pieces
- In a mixing bowl, add maida/all purpose flour, cornflour, salt, white pepper, red chilli powder and turmeric powder and combine well
- Add little water and whisk everything together to form a thin batter.
- Batter should not be too thin. It should be right enough to coat the paneer pieces.
- Set aside for 10 minutes.
Part 2 : Mixing the sauces and keep it ready
- In a small mixing bowl, add red chilli sauce, green chilli sauce, tomato ketchup and schezwan sauce.
Part 3 : Frying paneer pieces and tossing them in sauce
- Heat a small kadai with oil for frying.
- Allow it to heat.
- Once hot, add the paneer pieces and deep fry them till they are crisp.
- Drain them on a kitchen towel which absorbs the excess oil
- Meanwhile in a wok, heat 2 tbsp oil and allow it to heat
- Add chopped ginger and garlic and saute
- Add chopped onions and fry for a while
- Add chopped green chillies, spring onions and green capsicum.
- Toss for a minute.
- All these procedures are to be done on high flame only
- Add sauces mix from the part 2 to this and mix well.
- Allow it to heat
- Add the deep-fried paneer pieces into this and gently toss till the paneer is coated well with the sauces.
Part 4 : Garnishing
- Garnish with spring onions and serve hot 🙂
- Make sure the oil is very hot when you fry the paneer pieces. If in case the oil is not hot, the pieces might stick to each other and takes longer time to fry.
- Any chinese cooking has to be done in high flame only. this is in order to retain the crunchiness of the veggies we use.
- Serve paneer chilli dry immediately before the paneer pieces turn soggy and cold.
- Please adjust spice level accordingly. Add more or less watching out to your taste buds 🙂
- Using Schezwan sauce is optional. I use it because it is spicy and enhances the flavour.
- If you do not want to deep-fry the paneer you can goahead and shallow fry them. But then, the paneer pieces would not be as crispy as the deep-fried ones.