Kadhai Paneer

Nothing compares, nothing compares to you…


Indian cottage cheese or paneer is one of the most celebrated ingredients of our cuisine. In India, you can be sure to expect a paneer dish on the menu for all special occasions. Growing up I remember eating paneer ever so often. In curries, flatbreads and believe it or not even on a pizza.

Todays recipe combines succulent chunks of paneer with the earthiness of spinach and the sweetness of capsicum. Cooked in an Indian wok called a kadhai, this dish gets humbly called kadhai paneer.

Ingredients: 13  Cooking time: 20 minutes

Serves: 4

  • 500gms of paneer, cut in bite sized cubes
  • One bunch of spinach, coarsely chopped
  • Two medium capsicums, finely sliced
  • One red onion, finely sliced
  • Two pods of garlic, minced
  • One teaspoon of ginger paste
  • 1.5 teaspoon of dried mint leaves
  • One tablespoon of garam masala
  • One teaspoon of coriander powder
  • One cinnamon stick
  • Two tablespoons of ghee
  • Salt to season
  • Fresh coriander to garnish

Heat ghee in a kadhai (wok). Add onion, ginger and garlic. Cook until aromatic and the onion is lightly caramelised.


Now add spinach, cinnamon stick, one teaspoon of dried mint leaves and half tablespoon of garam masala. Mix well, cover the pan and let the spinach wilt on a medium heat for four to five minutes.


Then add capsicum and paneer chunks, followed by rest of the dried spices, including remaining garam masala and dried mint leaves. Season with salt and mix well. Let the paneer and capsicum sear on a high heat for seven to ten minutes.


If you are an avid meat eater or vegan, you can replace paneer with chicken or tofu too.

Your kadhai paneer is ready to serve. Garnish with fresh coriander leaves and serve alongside flaky parathas or on a bed of rice with raita. Eat it anyway you like and be rest assured nothing will compare to it.

Rainbow Chard and Pea Fettucini 

Every now and then, try something new…

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I strongly believe the more you cook, the better you become at cooking. The more you try new ingredients the better you become at matching flavours and textures and creating true culinary masterpieces.

My husband constantly loves to challenge me in the kitchen. Somedays when he goes grocery shopping he will come back with a new herb or a new spice or a new vegetable. Of course my challenge then is to turn that new ingredient into a gastronomical delight for him. Lucky him!
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The other day after a trip to the farmers market, Ji came back home with a truck load of goodies. One of them was a beautiful bunch of rainbow chard. My kitchen came to life with those beautiful colours, bright pink, orange, yellow and green. It was almost too beautiful to cook with, alas a woman has got to eat.

I decided to add a bit of colour to one of our favourite weeknight meals and made a lip smackingly delicious pasta with rainbow chard and peas. If you would like a bit of colour in your life too, read the recipe below.

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Ingredients: 15  Cooking time: 20 minutes

Serves: 4

  • 500 gms of fettuccine or pasta of your choice
  • One bunch of rainbow chard, stems sliced and leaves coarsely chopped
  • 250 gms of peas (I used frozen)
  • 125 gms of marinated red bell peppers, chopped ( these are available in the deli section of the supermarket)
  • One brown onion, finely sliced
  • Five to six pods of garlic, finely sliced
  • One red chilli, finely chopped
  • 125 gms of parsley (stems and leaves), finely chopped
  • Juice of half a lemon 
  • One teaspoon dried oregano
  • One teaspoon dried basil
  • Six to eight tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt to season 
  • Cracked pepper to garnish
  • Parmesan cheese to garnish 

Cook pasta as per packet instructions and keep aside.

In a pan heat three tablespoons of olive oil. Add garlic and cook until aromatic. Now add the onions, half the parsley and chilli, cook on a medium heat for three to four minutes. 

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Now add the sliced stems of the rainbow chard and give the ingredients a good stir. Once the stems are a little tender add the leaves, peas, marinated peppers and lemon juice. Mix all the ingredients well.

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Finally add the pasta, dried herbs, remaining parsley and olive oil. Season with salt and  toss the pasta well, ensure the pasta is evenly coated with the beautiful lemon olive oil sauce.

Your fettuccine is ready to be served. Place a generous portion of the pasta on a plate, garnish with grated Parmesan cheese and cracked pepper. Serve with a chilled glass of Riesling on a warm summers evening and watch the rainbow brighten your night.

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