Feb 5, 2013

Bell Pepper and Paneer fry

Bell Pepper and Paneer Fry

How do you cook for people whose taste orientations are totally different? My husband likes spicy stuff and my daughter likes bland stuff.  And, I like to eat with my eyes - color combination is very important for me to like a dish. This recipe here is a keeper for all three above reasons. It's got just the right amount of spice and the bell pepper adds to it. The paneer is bland enough to suit my daughter's taste and the color combination is definitely appetizing.
When I saw these vibrant red bell peppers at the grocers, I had to make this dish for dinner.

Winter Bell Peppers

  • Bell Pepper, any color - 2
  • Paneer aka Indian Cottage Cheese - 1 pack, 1/2 lb
  • Onions - 1
  • Tomato - 1
  • cloves - 4
  • fennel seeds - 1 tsp
  • Dried fenugreek leaves, kasur methi - 1 tsp
  • turmeric - 1/2 tsp
  • oil,  for sauteing
  • salt, to taste
To grind:
  • Onion, quartered - 1/2
  • Tomato, quartered - 1
  • Ginger - 1" piece
  • Garlic - 10 cloves
  • Curry leaves - 2 sprigs
  • dried red chilli - 2
  • coriander seeds - 1 tbsp
  • fennel powder - 1 tsp
  1. Grind to a fine paste, all ingredients listed under "to grind". If needed, use a little water to help in the grinding process.
  2. Finely chop the onion and tomato.
  3. Cut Paneer into 1" cubes. Lay these in a single layer, on an oiled cookie sheet . Brown the paneer cubes under broiler for 5 minutes. Ensure that the top of the paneer cubes are at least 6" away from the broiler. After 5 minutes, turn all paneer cubes and brown the other side for 2 minutes. Remove from under the broiler and let cool on the countertop.
  4. Cut the bell pepper in half. Remove the seeds and inner membrane. Cut along the ridges to make thin strips of bell pepper. Quarter these strips. This ensures that the bell pepper and paneer are almost the same size.
  5. In a heavy bottomed wide saute pan, heat oil for sauteing.
  6. Before the oil starts to smoke, add fennel seeds and cloves. Fry the spices in the oil until you get a nice aroma.
  7. Add the chopped onions and cook for 5 minutes. When the onion turns translucent, add the tomatoes and a little salt. This will help quicken the cooking time of tomatoes.
  8. Also add the paste from step 1. Add enough salt and the turmeric.
  9. Let this cook, covered for 5-10 minutes. Stir occasionally to encourage even browning. The longer you fry this masala without burning, the better it tastes. When oil floats to the top, you know you have nailed it!
  10. Add the chopped bell pepper. Stir well to coat the bell pepper's surface with the masala. Cover and simmer for 5 minutes. When the bell peppers' raw smell has dissipated but it still retains its crunchiness, it is time to add the prepared paneer cubes.
  11. After adding the paneer, taste and adjust salt to suit your taste. Add very little water to bring the masala to desired consistency. Let everything simmer for 5 more minutes. This last stretch of simmering helps blends all tastes together. 
  12. Sprinkle kasur methi on top.
  13. Remove from fire and garnish with cilantro or mint leaves.


  1. My daughter loves paneer too.. This dish looks so delicious and very inviting..

  2. Excellent tips & method about recipes, you have a wide range of recipes list available, helpful site - thanks
    Indian Recipes List

  3. very well explained post!!! and the pictures are looking so delicious!!! thanks for linking... looking for more yummy recipes...
    Ongoing Event - Tried and Tasted - Raks Kitchen
    Ongoing Event - Dish it out - Lentils & Garlic
    Ongoing Event - Know Your Dairy - Cheese

  4. looks delicious...and I like these bell pepper pictures....
    thanks a lot for linking....


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