Spicy Andhra Paneer!

This is fusion cooking at its best! Paneer or Indian cottage Cheese, is my most favorite food item, ditto for my daughter too. Since I was introduced to Paneer during my colleague days, there has been no looking back. Those were the days, we frequented lot of restaurants. I have already spoke in large on my paneer fancy in my most favorite Paneer Butter Masala. Even though my original recipe is a keeper, after many trials, I have come out with the most yummy version of this Paneer Butter Masala. We frequent the restaurant in our social club and the master dishes up a nice variety of this dish. The club is run by the officers committee and Dad was the President for a term. The restaurant was opened during his term, and I got my way to the heart of the place and enjoyed myself with the happenings. As expected, the caterers were changed many times and so did this dish with the change in management. Finally we have one caterer, who has been able to withstand and has been on the roll for quite sometime, but his master keeps changing.

Their Paneer Butter Masalas was quite delicious. As I am always curious on the ingredients, I asked the manager what went in. As reluctant he was, he just said something something but never got around disclosing anything clearly. Of course, I told him that we have our own recipe, which tastes great. Still he wasn't so forthcoming. Andhra Paneer, a typical fusion dish came from their kitchen and it is still the most sought out dish on all days. They first tried this out with Chicken and since we can always replace Paneer for all chicken recipes, I guess they landed up with the same ingredients being tried for paneer. Whatever it is, the dish is just too yummy. I have been asking the manager on this recipe. And I saw again that he was reluctant. One evening, when I reminded him that he is still escaping from disclosing the recipe. He thought I was asking about Paneer Butter Masala and said "Madam, its better you don't try because you wont" get the dish taste like that". I was quite surprised but before could say anything, hubby dear said "Madam prepares Paneer Butter Masala better than your master. Infact you should come home, to enjoy the Paneer Butter Masala and Naan that Madame prepares for us" The manager was really taken aback and dually apologized. Though I was upset on this incident, I was trilled by hubby dear's compliment. Though he has always appreciated, this unexpected complement came as a morel boost!

I decided I will not ask for the recipe again. I mostly can decipher the ingredients by eating. And this dish, I must've had so many times. All I wanted was to confirm if I was correct. But since they were so reluctant to share, I thought I would just go ahead experiment myself. I made paneer last Saturday and have since been planning to prepare. But never got around this, finally I decided I should get over wth it. In the time I got, with hubby dear shuttling between bringing Athamma home and dropping his sister to station, I prepared this and it got over in flat 5 mins. Yes, it really was only 5 mins that it took for everybody to attack the plate. Imagine, my twins loved it too. The first batch was not so spicy, so the kids loved it. I had just time enough to take few pictures. I always wish I could take the pictures during day light but alas, I always end up with a new dish during night. So the pictures aren't so glamorous as I wanted them to be. Still I think they can pass. Konda just loved it and of course, I couldn't save some for hubby dear. So will be doing it again soon

Ingredients Needed
Paneer - 250 gms
All purpose flour / Maida - 2 tbsp
Corn flour - 1 tbsp
Salt to taste
Red colour powder a pinch
Oil - 2 tsp

For seasoning
Curds/ Yogurt - 2 tbsp
Chilli powder - 1 tsp
Green Chillies - 4 nos
Garlic pods - 4
Curry leaves few

Method to prepare

Dice the paneer to small cubes. Mix the flours with salt and colour. Add water to the flour and mix well to get a thick batter. Add the paneer cubes and mix well. It should get well coated.

Heat a pan with oil. Once its hot, let the paneer cubes deep fried. Remove them to a plate once all are fried.

Chop green chilies, fry them in oil along with curry leaves. Remove them to a plate.

To the remaining oil in the pan, add curds along with chilli powder and salt. Once it starts cooking, add the paneer cubes and the chilies and curry leaves. Fry for a while, till the pieces are well coated.

Alternatively we can try marinating the paneer with curds and then frying with the flours. will be trying this way next time.

This dish has to be really hot as in chillies. I guess they added the prefix to Andhra just for its hot! So add more chillies and enjoy!

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