Paneer 65 is one of the most popular starters in Indian restaurants. It is especially popular in South India, where it is available even in small eateries in remote areas. This is a peppy snack or starter, with an unmistakeable Oriental influence. Marinated and deep-fried paneer cubes are sautéed with chillies and onions to make this awesome snack. The crispiness of the paneer, the juicy crunch of the veggies and the rich taste of assorted spices make this a truly appetising treat, ideal to serve as a starter. Cauliflower can also be cooked similarly, to make another starter called Gobi 65. You can also try other interesting starters like the Ravioli Samosa or Malai Paneer Bell Pepper Balls.
|Paneer cubes||1 1/4 Cup (20 tbs) (cottage cheese)|
|Finely chopped coriander||1/4 Cup (4 tbs) (dhania)|
|Finely chopped spring onions||1 Cup (16 tbs) , divided (whites and greens, 1/2 cup for the marinade paste and 1/2 cup for cooking)|
|Chopped green chillies||4 , divided (1 1/2 tsp roughly chopped and 2 slit)|
|Chopped garlic||2 Teaspoon (lehsun)|
|Curd||1/4 Cup (4 tbs) (dahi)|
|Rice flour||1 Tablespoon (chawal ka atta)|
|Tumeric powder||1/2 Teaspoon (haldi)|
|Chilli powder||1 Teaspoon|
|Cumin powder||1/2 Teaspoon (jeera)|
|Coriander powder||1/2 Teaspoon (dhania)|
|Garam masala||1/2 Teaspoon|
|Tandoori masala||1 Teaspoon|
|Food colour||1/4 Teaspoon|
|Oil||2 Cup (32 tbs) (For deep frying)|
|Finely chopped garlic||1 Teaspoon (lehsun)|
|Sliced onions||1/2 Cup (8 tbs)|
1. Combine the spring onions, coriander, roughly chopped garlic and roughly chopped green chillies in a mixer and blend till smooth without using water.
2. Transfer the paste into a deep bowl, add the curds, cornflour, plain flour, rice flour, turmeric powder, ½ tsp of chilli powder, cumin seeds powder, coriander powder, garam masala, tandoori masala, salt and food colour and mix well using a whisk.
3. Add the paneer cubes and mix gently.
4. Refrigerate for 15 minutes.
5. Heat the oil for deep-frying and deep-fry a few marinated paneer pieces on a medium flame. Drain on an absorbent paper. Keep aside.
6. Heat the oil in a broad non-stick pan, add the garlic and sauté on a medium flame for a few seconds.
7. Add the slit green chillies, sliced onions and little salt and sauté on a medium flame for 2 minutes.
8. Add the remaining ½ tsp of chilli powder and 1 tbsp of water, mix well and cook on a medium flame for 1 minute, while stirring occasionally.
9. Add the fried paneer and spring onions, mix gently and cook on a medium flame for 2 minutes, while stirring occasionally.
10. Serve immediately.