Meatless Monday: Kadai Paneer - Indian Stir-fried Paneer
The Recipe: Kadai Paneer - Stir-fried Paneer
Why We Love It
This Indian restaurant favorite comes together in a jiffy with just a couple of ingredients and pantry staples. If you have an Indian grocery store nearby, you’ll easily be able to find paneer in the frozen or refrigerated section (look for blocks that look like feta). Or, Chitra has a great blog post on how to make your own (2 ingredients and a bit of time). It’s spicy, bright, and delicious served with chapati (Indian flatbread), rice, or naan. Want to make your own chapati? Check out Chitra’s video recipe here.
The Chef: Chitra Agrawal
Food Blogger, Cooking Instructor, Digital Marketer
We met Chitra at an event in New York City a few weeks ago and boy are we glad we did! On her blog (which stands for American Born Confused Desi - a cheeky term used to describe South Asians born in the U.S.), she shares the process of documenting and experimenting with her family’s traditional Indian recipes while putting her own twist on them using seasonal and local ingredients. She’s documenting a legacy of amazing cooking that might otherwise go unwritten and making it accessible to all of us through her own exploration. Thanks for sharing with us and preserving your family’s heritage, Chitra!
The Tip: Ditch the Can, Grab the Tube
We’re a little tomato paste crazy over here. It’s an essential in any well-stocked pantry and a great way to add an intense tomato flavor to any dish, like today’s recipe. Chitra reminds us that tomatoes are an essential ingredient in many Indian recipes and, when you don’t have access to high-quality fresh tomatoes, tomato paste works great. But, there’s something you should know:
Ditch the tiny cans and buy tubes of San Marzano tomato paste instead. Only the amount you need and store the tube in the fridge for months. No waste.
San Marzano tomatoes are a variety of plum tomatoes that are well known for being used in Italian pasta sauces but they are amazing for making curries too. Look for the tube in the canned tomato or Italian section of your grocery store.
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