Paneer Tikka Masala

Recently I had posted the recipe for Paneer Tikka, the starter. This is an extension of that recipe and the result is Paneer Tikka Masala, a gravy-based side dish for rotis.

I am not a big eater and so avoid soups and starters (or then eat only those) in favour of the main course and dessert (must have; I cannot end a meal without a sweet!). So Paneer Tikka Masala is just perfect for me.

Paneer Tikka Masala for Rotis
Paneer Tikka Masala for Rotis

How to Make Paneer Tikka Masala

Preparation Time: 15 Minutes

Marinating Time: 1 Hour

Cooking Time: 20 Minutes

Serves: 4 to 6

Ingredients for the Marinade

  1. Thick Yogurt, Dahi – 1/2 Cup
  2. Besan, Gram Flour – 1 tbsp
  3. Ajwain – 1/4 tsp
  4. Garam Masala – 1/2 tsp
  5. Deghi Mirch Powder, Kashmiri Chilli Powder – 1 tsp
  6. Regular Red Chilli Powder – 1/2 tsp
  7. Turmeric Powder – 1/4 tsp
  8. Ginger Paste – 1 tsp
  9. Garlic Paste – 1 tsp
  10. Lemon Juice – 1 tbsp
  11. Mustard Oil – 1 tbsp
  12. Butter or Ghee – 1 tbsp
  13. Salt to Taste

Ingredients for Paneer Tikka Masala Gravy

  1. Thick Yogurt, Dahi – 1/2 Cup
  2. Tomato Puree – 1/4 cup
  3. Onions – 2 Large
  4. Ginger Paste – 1/2 tsp
  5. Garlic Paste – 1/2 tsp
  6. Garam Masala – 1/2 tsp
  7. Red Chilli Powder – 3/4 tsp
  8. Turmeric – 1/4 tsp
  9. Salt to Taste

Other Ingredients

  1. Paneer – 250 gms
  2. Red Bell Pepper – 1 Small
  3. Yellow Bell Pepper – 1 Small
  4. Capsicum – 1 Small
  5. Onion – 1 Large
  6. Ghee – 4 tsp

Method to Make the Marinade

  1. On tawa, over medium heat, heat 1 tbsp ghee.
  2. Add ajwain and stir-fry till aromatic.
  3. Add the besan.
  4. Saute till the raw smell of the besan disappears and it becomes aromatic.
  5. Remove into a large bowl (enough to fit the marinade, paneer, and the vegetables).
  6. Let the besan cool.
  7. Mix together the cooled besan mix, dahi, ginger paste, garlic paste, both the chilli powders, salt, garam masala, and lemon juice.
  8. Mix well.
  9. In a ladle, heat the mustard oil till the smoking point.
  10. Turn off the heat.
  11. Add turmeric to the mustard oil and mix well.
  12. Add the mustard oil to the marinade.
  13. Mix well.
  14. Set aside.

Preparing the Paneer and Vegetables

  1. Cut the Paneer into 1″ cubes about 1/2″ thick.
  2. Cut the bell peppers in half.
  3. Discard the seeds.
  4. Cut into 1″ squares.
  5. Peel and quarter the onion.
  6. Cut into 1″ pieces.
  7. Separate the different layers of the onion.

Marinating the Paneer and Vegetables

  1. Add all the vegetables and paneer to the marinade.
  2. Set aside for at least 1 hour. (I let the paneer and vegetables marinate overnight in the refrigerator).

Making the Paneer Tikka on a Tava

  1. On a non-stick tava, heat about 1.5 tsp ghee.
  2. Remove the paneer pieces from the marinade. Shake off any excess marinade but do not remove all marinade.
  3. Save the excess marinade.
  4. Place on the tava and cook till both sides of the paneer pieces are brown.
  5. Remove into a plate.
  6. Scrape any masala stuck to the pan.
  7. Add 1.5 tsp of ghee.
  8. Remove the bell pepper and onion pieces from the marinade. Shake off any excess marinade but do not remove all marinade.
  9. Save the excess marinade.
  10. Place on the tava and cook till the side touching the pan starts to blister.
  11. Flip over and cook for a minute.
  12. Remove into a plate.
  13. Save the pan and the remaining ghee.

Making the Paneer Tikka Masala

  1. Beat the yogurt till smooth.
  2. Peel and chop the onions into chunk.
  3. Grind the onions into a smooth paste.
  4. In the pan in which you fried the paneer and vegetables, heat 1 tsp ghee.
  5. Add the onion paste and fry till the paste turns light brown.
  6. Add the ginger and garlic pastes.
  7. Stir-fry for a few seconds.
  8. Add the tomato puree and cook till the raw smell of the tomato disappears and the ghee appears at the edges of the cooked paste.
  9. Add the red chilli powder, garam masala, and turmeric.
  10. Mix well.
  11. Turn the heat down to low.
  12. Add the remaining marinade and mix well.
  13. Add the yogurt.
  14. Mix well.
  15. Add a little water to form a thick garvy.
  16. Simmer over low heat for 3 to 5 minutes.
  17. Turn off the heat.
  18. Add the pan-fried paneer and bell peppers.
  19. Mix with a light hand.
  20. Serve the Paneer Tikka Masala with hot rotis or parathas.
Paneer Tikka Masala
Paneer Tikka Masala