Some years ago I read this book “Don’t loose your mind loose your weight” yes it is supposed to be a weight loss book but its much more than that. I loved the book and even more the author Rujuta Diwekar (she is the Kareena kapoor’s dietitian) because she dares to be different and true, which is a big deal because when the whole world is talking about low fat, no oil cooking she brings us back to the basics. That is : eat just the right amount no more no less (how would you know the right amount ? pay attention to your food when you are eating away from TV or phone or whatever) and eat what you have been eating all your life.
As simple as that, I also love her because she answers a lot of my questions about Indian rituals. In fact few weeks ago I watched her video “The Indian food wisdom” you tube and it was a welcome eye opener. The way she makes us understand that how being one of the oldest civilization, Indian cooking process, Indian spices, even Indian chutney and pickles are all well thought of, logical and good for us. I really recommend watching this video and I am sure you will know atleast bit more than you thought you know the Indian food and would be guilt free while eating the dal and sabzi with the ghee and tadka.
Now coming to this week’s recipe. This one is a typical UP dish and I called up my mom and my mami (Aunt) before trying this one. However, I as always couldn’t control my urge to add something to twist the recipe a bit, But I have no complains as, it just enhance the flavor of this mild and flavorful recipe of Matar ka Nimona..
Typically it is just Matar ka Nimona but somehow while making I thought of adding Paneer (cottage cheese) to it and thus this…Matar paneer ka nimona. This is again a simple recipe but a nice change to the regular Matar paneer. The typical Matar ka Nimona doesn’t have tomato so I tired it without tomato too, but again if you really love them please add them. Just remember we want the predominant flavor of peas in this recipe. Its good to have smaller peas as the fully grown big peas don’t taste as good.
I used frozen peas so just washed and thawed them in Microwave before using. I grated the paneer because I didn’t want to change the texture of the crumbly Nimona, but again you may even dice it if you want. I think traditionally this recipe is a thinner gravy but I made it semi dry Because I don’t like very thin gravies with Roti. So lets jump right to the recipe
Recipe for Matar Paneer Nimona
Yield: Good for 2 people
Green Peas: 2 cups
Paneer: 1/2 -3/4 Cup
Green Cardamom :2
Bay leaf -1
Green Chilies-3-4 (to taste)
Oil: 10-15 Tbsp
Coriander powder:1 Tsp
Garam Masala: 1 Tsp
Dry Mango powder:1 Tbsp
Ginger : 1 inch Piece
Onion: 1 medium
Green coriander: 3 Tbsp
Salt : to taste
water- 1/4-1/2 cup
- Coarsely grind the peas and saute them in 5 Tbsp of oil (you might need more oil), on medium flame for 5-7 minutes stirring regularly. We want to do this till the raw aroma for the peas is gone. Now keep them aside.
- Grind Onion, green chilies, ginger, green coriander, 1 cardamon and 2 cloves.
- Heat remaining oil in a pan add bay leaf, cloves and cardamoms and let it cook for 30 sec.
- Now add the onion paste and again let it cook for another 5-7 minutes or till the oil starts to separate on sides.
- Add the dry spices that’s coriander, mango powder and garam masala.
- Now add the fried peas mixture to the pan and cook adding 1/4 cup of water and mix well so that all spices and paste gets incorporated in peas. Cook for 3-4 minutes. You may add more water to achieve desired consistency.
- Add thickly grated paneer to it and mix well let it cook for another 2 minutes.
- Enjoy your matar paneer Nimona with roti/ Parantha.