About this recipe:So this is one of those times when I open the fridge and I have nothing that I can make a whole dish out of. I wanted some protein - but didn't have any that matched up to my ingredients. So I finally pulled out my emergency ration of paneer. Now the dilemma was - how do I cook it! I am starting to hate cooking the "curry" way. I wanted something different. So this is what I came up with.
In a large non-reactive bowl, mix together: vinegar, paprika, sugar, 1/4 tsp salt, cardamom, cinnamon, white pepper, black pepper, saffron and olive oil. Whisk until the salt and sugar dissolves.
Add the paneer to the marinade and set aside.
In a wok, heat the rest of the cooking oil. Add the bay leaves.
Reduce the heat to medium high and add the onions and garlic. Season with salt to taste.
In about two or three minutes, the onions will start turning slightly brown at the edges and just beginning to turn translucent.
Reduce the heat to medium. Add the paneer and quickly fold it in with the onions. The onions should immediately turn pink.
Spread everything around the wok evenly as you can. Let it cook on one side for about 40 seconds or so, and then fold and spread it around again. Repeat for about 3 minutes.
Sprinkle the crushed thyme and mix it in.
Remove from heat. Place on a serving dish. Garnish with cilantro and serve hot.
The dish should taste slightly sweet and sour and savory. There should be a bit of crunch from the onions, and the creaminess of the paneer. It’s a dry dish – so its best served with some kind of parathas or puri.
You can prep all the ingredients and keep aside. Cooking time is barely 10 minutes. The longer the paneer marinates, the better it will taste. Don`t use the fried stuff, please.
Since this is a mild dish, you can spike up the chilli factor if you want to. You could add powdered chilli into the paneer marinade or you could serve with sliced green chillies for garnish.
If you don`t have oregano - grind a little ajwain, about quarter spoonful, into the mix.