Egg Dopiaza

This is a much loved dish in so many Indian homes. The word “dopiaza” actually translates as double onions – they’re cooked until they’re beautifully caramelised and golden. Paired with the boiled eggs (my preference is jammy soft boiled eggs!) and scooped up with buttery parathas, this dish is an absolute treat.

I taught this recipe at a recent Facebook live cookery class and it was so much fun.. You can catch up on it here (Mum even makes a guest appearance!). Let me know how it goes down in your kitchen!

Egg Dopiaza

Ingredients
  

  • 6 medium eggs boiled and peeled. I like mine soft boiled so I bring to boil & then simmer for 6 minutes. Then run under a cold tap until room temp.
  • 8-10 tbsp oil
  • 2 x cloves optional
  • 2 green cardamom pods crushed open, optional
  • 2 cm cinnamon stick optional
  • 2 bay leaves optional
  • 2 x large onions 500g, thinly sliced
  • 1 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 cloves garlic grated
  • 2 cms ginger grated
  • 1 small tomato 70g, finely diced
  • 1-2 chillies finely chopped
  • 1/ 2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala
  • 1 3/4 tsp coriander powder
  • 1/4 tsp chilli powder
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp sugar
  • Handful fresh coriander roughly chopped
  • Water
  • Pan with lid & a wooden spoon

Instructions
 

  • Heat oil in the pan. When hot, add the cloves, cardamom, cinnamon stick and bay leaves
  • Now add the onions a little at a time and begin to separate the slices using your wooden spoon. Once all of the onions are in the pan, add the salt and mix. Cook on a medium/high heat.
  • Place a lid on the pan and allow the onions to soften completely. Mix the onions every 2 minutes and then place the lid back on.
  • After 5-6 minutes, the onions should be soft and translucent . At this point add the garlic and ginger. Cook for 3-4 minutes. Then, add the tomatoes & chilli.
  • Continue to cook for a further 10 minutes on a medium heat with the lid on ( mixing every 2-3 minutes), until everything looks deep golden in colour. If you ever find anything is catching, add a couple of tbsp of water to help release or you can add a little more oil.
  • Once golden, reduce the heat and add the spice powders, sugar and the remaining salt. Cook for a minute until the oil begins to release around the edges. Taste for salt/chilli/sweetness and adjust accordingly. Now add the cooked eggs and carefully mix. Finish with fresh coriander. Enjoy with hot parathas or chapatis.

Murgh Jhalfrezi

I decided to teach this recipe as part of my Facebook Live cookery sessions on the hottest day of the year. Not sure if that was clever. The word “jhal” actually means hot in Bengali though – so I suppose it was somewhat fitting.

It’s a fiery, dry (semi saucy) dish that can almost be described as an “Indian stir fry”. Scooped up with some fresh chapatis off the tava, it’s a real delight! I hope you enjoy.

Murgh Jhalfrezi

Servings 4

Ingredients
  

For the chicken marinade:

  • 500 g skinned chicken thighs cut into small bite-size pieces
  • 2 heaped tbsp yoghurt
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • ¼ tsp chilli powder

For the masala:

  • 2 tbsp ghee & 2tbsp oil
  • 1 ½ tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 medium onion 150g, half finely chopped & half thinly sliced
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 garlic cloves peeled and grated
  • 3 ” ginger grated
  • 2 fresh tomatoes 170g, finely diced
  • 1 ½ tbsp double concentrate tomato purée
  • 1-2 green bird eye chillies finely chopped
  • ½ tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • ¼ tsp turmeric
  • ¾ tsp garam masala
  • ½ tsp chilli
  • 1 green pepper thinly sliced
  • ½ red pepper thinly sliced
  • ¼ tsp roasted cumin powder optional
  • Handful fresh coriander
  • 80-100 ml water

Instructions
 

  • Pre-heat your grill at the maximum temperature setting. Place all “marinade” ingredients into a bowl and mix together. Now, place the marinated chicken on a foil lined oven tray.
  • Grill chicken for 8-9 minutes until cooked (the chicken should be white all the way through). Remove from grill and keep aside.
  • Heat the ghee and oil in pan on a medium heat setting. Once hot add the cumin seeds. Then add the onions along with ½ tsp salt. Cook for 2-3 minutes until translucent.
  • Now add the garlic and ginger and mix. Continue to cook for a further 2-3 minutes until golden brown.
  • Add the chopped tomatoes and purée to the pan and stir. Place a lid on top and cook for 2-3 minutes allowing them to completely soften.
  • Reduce heat slightly and add the green chillies, coriander powder, paprika, turmeric, garam masala and the remaining salt and mix well. Cook for 2-3 minutes. When you see the oil begin to separate from the masala paste, add the grilled chicken along with the sliced peppers and water.
  • Mix well and place on a medium/high heat. Place a lid on the pan and cook for 5-6 minutes. Finish with roasted cumin powder a sprinkle of fresh coriander. Taste for salt and chilli and adjust accordingly. Remove from heat.

South Indian Style Paneer Mattar

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Yesterday was one of those days. Yes one of *those* days. I woke up early, feeling amazing with a big smile on my face, leapt out of bed with a huge bolt of energy and drew back the curtains to see…oh what have we here? Grey skies, rain, a sodden garden and general wetness and dullness…everywhere. I immediately let out a long grunt type noise, that phonetically spelt out, would be something along the lines of UGGHH. My first thought was to jump straight back into bed and stay there. I mean, Wednesday is nearly Friday which is practically the weekend…right?! I spent a few more minutes trying to rationalise the idea but then opened up my reminders app on auto-pilot, and saw my epic “To Do” list staring at me. Grave error – my dreams of returning to a quilty haven shattered in a single click of the Home button. 

Some may call me over dramatic (my other half regularly does) but I’m a huge believer that weather can truly affect your mood. I knew that I needed something to “pick me up”. After a quick visit to the gym, (they say you only start burning fat after 20 minutes of cardio – I thought 21 minutes on the step machine was as a solid time) I decided I would make lunch before I started my day. Cooking generally puts me in a good mood and I figured it would give me something to look forward to!

This brings me to today’s recipe. Have you ever made paneer before? I make it ALL the time. It’s so quick to cook, a good source of protein and super versatile. Paneer Mattar is a dish I cook regularly at home – it’s lovely and comforting. Imagine a creamy and chunky casserole but with a depth of warm spiciness and just a cheeky little kick.  This time round, I decided to “pimp” my usual recipe by giving it a South Indian twist with mustard seeds & curry leaves. Let’s just say my pre-lunch frown was quickly turned upside-down!

If you have never used curry leaves in your cooking before, you must try. They’re beautifully warm and fragrant and bring any dish to life.

Give it a go!

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South Indian Style Paneer Mattar
Serves 4
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Ingredients
  1. 220g paneer, chopped
  2. 5-6 tbsp olive oil
  3. 1 tsp cumin
  4. 1 tsp mustard seeds
  5. handful of curry leaves, washed, dried & roughly chopped
  6. 2" ginger, grated
  7. 2 cloves garlic, peeled & grated
  8. 1 green chilli, finely chopped
  9. 1 1/2 tsp salt or according to taste
  10. 1/2 tsp paprika
  11. 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
  12. 1 tsp garam masala
  13. 2 tbsp greek yoghurt
  14. 2 plum tomatoes & 2 tbsp tomato juice
  15. 1 cup peas
Instructions
  1. Heat 1-2tbsp oil in a non-stick pan. Once hot, add the cumin seeds. When they begin to splatter, add the paneer and a pinch of salt. Cook for 2-4 minutes or until golden on one side. Turn over the paneer pieces and cook until golden on the other side. Remove paneer from pan.
  2. Add remaining oil to a non stick pan. Once hot, add the mustard seeds and curry leaves. You will see them begin to splatter immediately. At this point, add the ginger, garlic and chilli. Cook for 4-5 minutes or until golden.
  3. Now add the salt, paprika, turmeric powder & garam masala. Add the yoghurt and stir quickly. Cook for 2-3 minutes until the yoghurt blends well with the masala.
  4. Add the tomatoes and juice and mash well into the masala. Cook for a further 2-3 minutes. Now add the peas and 2 cups of water. Bring to boil. Now add the paneer and cook for further 2 minutes. Check for salt and adjust accordingly. Remove from heat.
  5. Serve with hot chapattis or naan bread!
Notes
  1. You can leave the skin on ginger, before grating - just make sure it's washed and clean. This way you have zero wastage from peeling!
  2. You can sauté the paneer in cumin before hand and keep it in an airtight container in the fridge until you want to use it. This paneer can also be used in salads as a tasty topping!
Monica's Spice Diary - Indian Food Blog http://spicediary.com/