A delicious combination of scrambled cottage cheese and spices; served with bread makes a perfect breakfast or dinner dish!
2017 is here!! The last year went away so quickly, seemed like a blink of an eye. Now we are starting a New Year and hopefully this one is just as great as the last! Today is the first post for this year and I am starting the year with something yummy and super delicious.
For the longest time I have been using store bought paneer for all the recipes. Finally, after a lot of contemplation, I decided to try making paneer from scratch. The first few times I made paneer bhurji and it was perfect.
The softness of home-made paneer made with a few onions, tomatoes and spicy chillies makes a perfect dinner option. The bhurji tastes awesome with roti or parathas. However, we LOVE it with sliced bread. The combination is great with sliced onions and green cilantro chutney.
A traditional Parsi dish, Paneer Bhurji is really famous in all Irani joints in Mumbai. The simplicity of making it and the versatility it has makes it a quick fix dish. From the famous Koolar and Co. in Matunga to the more recently opened Soda Bottle Openerwala, all Irani cafes have their own style of making this traditional one pot main dish. For more Parsi delicacies, check this post on Vegetarian Parsi Thali.
I had the authentic version at a couple of these cafes and started making it at home. In an attempt to make a tasty version of the dish, I made several changes over the few months since I first made it. From adding green peppers and ginger to the dish to doing away with them; from adding a lot of red chilli to moving away and adding a lot of green chilli; I have done it all!
This version is the one that we love and enjoy the most. However, based on what you like and how spicy you can handle, the recipe can be easily edited to suit everyone in the family! Whether starting with freshly made paneer or using store bought, the method remains the same. I would strongly recommend using freshly made paneer as it makes the bhurji very soft and creamy.
The spice level of this dish is somewhere more than moderate spicy. If you like a milder version, reduce the green chilli to half and adjust the red chilli powder. The akuri tastes awesome when made with butter. The butter takes the dish to the next level! If you would rather make it in oil, substitute butter with oil.
Hope you all enjoy this dish and yes, do come back for more yummy recipes all year long! Have a great 2017!!
For the Paneer
2% Milk 6 cups
Lemon Juice/ Vinegar 2 tbsp
For the Akuri
Paneer 2 cups, grated
Onion 1 medium, diced
Tomato 1 medium, diced
Garlic 2-3 cloves, minced
Green Chilli 1 medium, sliced
Butter 1 tbsp
Jeera 1 tsp
Red Chilli Powder 1 tsp
Turmeric Powder 1/2 tsp
Dhania Jeera Powder 1 tsp
Salt 1 tsp
Lime Juice 1/4 tsp
Cilantro to top
For the Paneer
Boil the milk to a rolling boil. Bring flame to low and add the lemon juice or vinegar. Mix well and keep stirring till the milk curdles completely. Once the whey and the paneer separates, turn down the flame.
Transfer the mixture to a muslin cloth and press out the water from the paneer. Wash it once to remove the sour flavor and keep the cloth pressed with a heavy weight like a tava or mortar pestle.
Let the water drain completely. Then crumble the paneer and keep ready.
For the Akuri
Heat butter in a pan. Add jeera and let it become flavorful. Once it does, add garlic and saute till the raw flavor vanishes. Next add the green chilli and onions and saute. Add red chilli powder, turmeric powder and dhania jeera powder. Cook till the onions are soft.
Then add the tomatoes and saute. Finally add the grated paneer and some cilantro. Mix well and cook for a couple of minutes. Turn down the flame, top with cilantro and mix the lime juice into the bhurji.
Serve warm with toasted or untoasted bread, roti or rice. The akuri tastes awesome with some sliced onions and freshly made cilantro chutney.
This Paneer Akuri was part of the Parsi Thali I posted some time back. To check out the remaining dishes on the Thali, click here.