Sunday, October 22, 2006

Jiffy cheese ’n peas


All the visiting and eating that goes with Deepavali makes for a very lazy cook the next day. But the demands of a potluck meal call out loud, so to balance my lassitude with those and come up with a dressy dish, I made this stir-fry of cottage cheese and fresh peas. If you use fresh peas or dried peas soaked overnight, boil them till soft/pressure-cook them for one whistle. It’s even faster if you use frozen peas. You can use tofu in place of the cottage cheese. And oh yes, don’t forget to season the peas with some salt while they boil!

Here’s how:
225 gm/2 big fistfuls of cottage cheese/tofu, cubed
A cup of peas, shelled & boiled
A tsp of oil
3 green chillies, slit
½ a tsp of cumin/jeera
Some salt and cracked pepper
Coriander leaves/cilantro for garnish

Heat oil in a pan, put in cumin. Once in splutters, put in the chillies, saute for a few seconds, then put in the peas and sauté for a while. If you’re using frozen peas, put in a teensy-weensy bit of salt and mix. Now put in the cottage cheese/tofu and sauté again. All this can be done on low/medium heat – make sure the cheese doesn’t stick to the pan. Now check for seasoning and add a little more salt if necessary, turning once again. The cheese might splutter a bit but don’t worry, it will stop soon. Now add the coriander leaves, stir lightly, turn off the heat and sprinkle with cracked pepper. Turn once more et voila, dry matar paneer is ready!
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