I, once in a while, need a change from every day home food to add sparkle to the Home menus (now more so in the Pandemic since eating out and going out is rather restricted). And my go to option is always homestyle Chinese food.
It's an easy feel-good cuisine, which reminds me of the Chinese food I used to eat out in restaurants as a teenager in the 90's.
I have conjured this recipe on my own over the years after many hit and trials. Having read a bazillion blogs and seen many food videos on YouTube, I was able to figure out how I like my Chilli Paneer. This one hits the sweet spot every time.
The game changer for me was Old Fashioned Gourmet's Kashmiri red chilli powder, Chilli Garlic & our Chinese Five spice blend. And I'm not saying this because it's my brand & I know how authentic and pure the ingredients are, but honestly and truly these three ingredients work like magic every time.
Kashmiri red chilli powder, lends the vibrant crimson hues, which normally comes by adding food coloring, which is a complete no-no for me, but this one lends it a natural beautiful color and flavour with out being over spicy. And Amma used to say, food must appeal to the eyes before it can hit the tongue.
Chilli Garlic, makes it spicy, tangy & garlicky all in one shot. It makes its a no-brainer to get the right flavour every time.
Chinese five spice, is a part of our Curry-in-a-hurry blends. This lends the oriental flavour in a jiffy, which appeals to our now refined Oriental palate.
The first time I made it using this recipe, my son thought that it was a takeaway and he happily gobbled it up. Now for a mother, what can be more gratifying than a teenager with a discerning palate, who loves ordering out, approving your home cooking. Right ?
So with out much ado.. please see my secret Chilli Paneer recipe and video to follow. <3
- For the Paneer marination
- Paneer -300 gms (can make with chicken or shrimp)
- Corn flour - 4tbsp
- Maida- 3 tbsp
- Kashmiri Red Chilli Powder - 2 tbsp
- Ginger Garlic Paste - 2 tbsp
- Salt- 1.5 tsp
- Oil for deep frying
- For the main dish
- 2-3 tbsp Peanut oil
- Onion, chopped 1"- 3/4 cup
- Capsicum, chopped 1"- 1/3 cup
- Ginger Garlic Paste - 2 tbsp
- Cornflour slurry- 1.5 tbsp mixed with 1/2 cup water
- Kashmiri Red Chilli Powder- 1 tbsp
- Soy Sauce- 2 tbsp
- Rice Vinegar - 2 tbsp
- Chilli Garlic- 1 tbsp (according to taste)
- Ketchup - 2 tbsp
- Chinese five spice- 1 tsp
- White pepper -1 tsp
- Salt to taste
- Sugar- 1 tsp
- Spring onions, chopped- 1/2 cup
- Chop Paneer in 1" cubes
- Add Cornflour, Maida, Kashmiri Red Chilli Powder, Ginger Garlic paste & Mix well.
- In hot oil, fry till slight crisp
- Drain on kitchen roll. & keep aside
- In a wok or kadhai, add Peanut oil, when hot and fry onions for 1 minute.
- Add Ginger Garlic paste and fry for a bit.
- Make a slurry of cornflour and water and keep ready
- Add Capsicum, OFG's Chilli Garlic, Soy, Vinegar, Kashmiri Red Chilli Powder and fry on very high flame for 1-2 minutes.
- Add Chinese five spice, Ketchup, Salt, Pepper & Sugar and stir fry for another minute.,
- Add the cornflour slurry, swirl it all around the Wok on low flame and once mixed cook at very high flame for 1-2 minutes till it thickens a bit.
- Add the fried Paneer and mix well.
- Sprinkle Spring onions and serve hot.
I serve this with Homestyle Hakka noodles !!!
My SECRET TIPS
- Always use peanut oil in chinese food to add depth of flavour
- Always make chinese food on a high flame
- Keep all your ingredients ready while making this dish, coz timing in very crucial while cooking. You dont want red chilli powder to burn or the onion and capsicum to get soggy.
- Add a pinch of Chinese Five spice in the end for added aroma.
- You can air fry the Paneer instead of deep-frying
LAST BUT NOT THE LEAST: adjust the chillies according to your taste !!!
BON APPETITE !!