Paneer Mushroom Masala

Visit the Indian Food Glossary for information on the ingredients in this recipe
After reading about Pooja's successful attempt to recreate a heavenly combination of paneer and mushrooms that she originally enjoyed at a restaurant, I couldn't resist trying it myself. Paneer and mushrooms are two of my very favorites and I can think of few combinations that would be as pleasing to me, especially simmered in a spicy tomato based creamy gravy. The addition of freshly ground roasted spices provides a deliciously pungent undertone to this hot dish, while the cashews impart a subtle nuttiness that compliments the earthy mushrooms and the big chunks of fried paneer. Truly, there is a unique burst of flavour in every single bite.

I daresay it's as good as exquisitely prepared matar paneer.

Paneer Mushroom Masala
Adapted from Pooja

1 cinnamon stick
6 cloves
1 teaspoon of cumin seeds
1/4 teaspoon of black cardamon seeds
1 star anise

1/4 cup of raw cashews
1 1/2 teaspoons of poppy seeds

400 grams of paneer cheese, cubed
1 large onion, finely chopped
1 inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and grated
1 clove of garlic, minced or crushed
2 - 3 green chilies or jalapenos
2 fresh bay leaves
2 fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon of chili powder
1 1/2 teaspoons of turmeric
1 teaspoon of garam masala
3/4 teaspoons of ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon of ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon of paprika
1/2 teaspoon of cayenne

3 medium-large tomatoes, finely chopped
14 ounces (397 grams) of mushrooms, sliced
2/3 cup of fresh peas
3/4 cup of cream or yogurt
1 teaspoon of dried fenugreek leaves (methi)
sea salt to taste
fresh parsley, chopped, for garnishing

butter and oil for frying

Dry roast the cinnamon stick, cloves, cardamon seeds, star anise and cumin seeds in a frying pan over medium low heat until the cumin seeds change colour a few shades and the spices are aromatic. Transfer to a spice grinder and grind until you have a powder. Set aside.

Grind the cashews and poppy seeds together with a few tablespoons of water into a paste. Set aside.

In a large frying pan, heat a few tablespoons of butter over medium heat. When hot, add the cubed paneer cubes and cook, gently flipping the cubes often, until the paneer is golden brown on all sides. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.

In a large pot, heat a few teaspoons of butter and oil over medium heat. When hot, add the onions to the pan and stir and fry until they soften and begin to brown. Add the ginger and garlic to the pot and stir and fry for another minute. Now add the ground dry roasted spices, the chili powder, turmeric, paprika, cayenne, ground cumin, coriander, garam masala, hot peppers, and the mint and bay leaves. Stir and fry for another minute.

Add the chopped tomatoes and mushrooms to the pan and simmer until the mushrooms just begin to turn tender. Toss in the fresh peas, cream, cashew poppy paste, methi leaves and salt and simmer until the peas are cooked - roughly another 10 minutes.

Reduce the heat to low, add the fried paneer cubes, cover and gently simmer for another few minutes. Remove the bay leaves before serving.

Serve with any Indian flatbread or over hot basmati rice.

Serves 4 - 6.

Other recipes you are sure to enjoy:
Shredded Paneer with Tomatoes, Chilies, Mushrooms and Chickpeas
Macaroni and Paneer Cheese
Mattar Paneer
More Matar Paneer

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Dawn said...

this looks so good! I would devour this.

Anh said...

I have bookmarked this recipe. It sounds so good, really!

Pooja said...

Wow looks so heavenly Lisa! Thanks a lot for trying out the dish! I'm very happy to know that you liked it :)

Shri said...

Looks divine!I like the addition of Parsley:)

A 2 Z Vegetarian Cuisine said...

Looks delicious.

Uma said...

looks gorgeous and yummy :)

rekhas kitchen said...

nice combination and that curry looks heavenly yum yum.

Kevin said...

I thought that spinach with paneer was good but mushrooms would be even better!

Parita said...

Oh that looks so creamy and delicious!

iRaw said...

Goodness! This looks absolutely delicious. I just might have to give this a go...yummy photos too!

karuna said...

this looks apt for a nice dinner party. Wld taste sooo yummy with naan or plain paratha.

MeetaK said...

just the perfect meal with a nice naan or roti! i want some!

eatme_delicious said...

Ooo Lisa this sounds and looks delicious! I love mushrooms and paneer too. I really must try and find some paneer.

Usha said...

Curry looks fantastic, loved the combination of mushrooms and paneer!

Juliana said...

Love any dish that contain paneer cheese, yummie!

Priti said...

Looks delicious

A_and_N said...

Looks great, Lisa!

johnwright said...

Oh, this looks wonderful with all those beautiful roasted vegetables! I can't wait to try it!