This paneer and mushroom curry is the definition of super-tasty! The scent of it cooking alone, with its sweet, spicy and fragrant aromas wafting around the house, will have everyone in reach wanting some.
This may be vegetarian but I assure all of you meat lovers out there, that this one is for you too. You don’t need the meat when a curry is this delicious! If you are vegan, we’ve got you covered too! Just swap the paneer for tofu and fold in some vegan yogurt to finish.
Paneer cheese is a wonderful ingredient that I regrettably came across later in my cooking career. What was I missing! It has a similar texture to halloumi but holds even better and has a more subtle taste. It’s like a sponge to flavour, especially when you score it, helping the sauce stick to each piece.
Grill, fry, bake or stew this hero ingredient and the result will always be the same: delicious!
I love spices and Indian cooking leads the way when it comes to using them. I’ve always been inspired by this wonderful cuisine and often experiment with many different spices, discovering how to balance them.
In this curry, we have a mixture of fragrant aromatic spices and some more earthy and rich spices. It really is just about the smell, taste and experimenting until you reach the desired flavour.
A few simple ingredients can transform this paneer and mushroom curry, and many other dishes, such as our root veg Goan curry, or coconut and pineapple fish curry.
The ginger, garlic and chilli base of this dish not only adds depth but helps thicken the sauce too. Once blitzed, the homemade sauce will develop a creamy consistency, locking in the flavours.
There is a lot going on in this dish! A slightly spiced, silky sauce with crispy onions and mushrooms, and mouthwatering pieces of paneer cheese; all balanced to perfection. Finish off with a big dollop of plain yogurt, to cut through all the fine flavours in this paneer and mushroom curry, and tuck in!
Paneer and Mushroom Curry
- Hand blender or food processor
- 450 g paneer cheese cut into bite size pieces
- 450 g chestnut mushrooms sliced
- 2 onions finely slice one and roughly chop the other (keep separate)
- 2 cloves garlic Roughly chopped
- 400 g tin of tomatoes
- 450 ml water
- 1 red chilli roughly chopped
- 4 whole cloves
- 3 cardamon pods remove the seeds from pods and discard the pod
- 2 star anise
- 2 bay leaves
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 2 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 tsp fennel seeds
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 1 tbsp fenugreek leaves 1 tsp ground fenugreek to replace (optional)
- 1 heaped tsp garam masala
- 1 heaped tbsp. full fat yoghurt
- freshly chopped coriander to serve
- Toast the cumin, cardamon and fennel seeds with the star anise on a low heat in a pan until you can start to smell the aromas.
- Add the rest of the spices with about a tablespoon of oil and simmer for another minute.
- Add the roughly chopped onion and coat in the spices. Turn up to a medium heat and start to sweat the onion until it becomes soft. Then add the garlic and chilli. Cook long until everything is soft and starts to colour.
- Add the tomatoes and water. Bring to a boil and simmer for 10 minutes. Stir in the fenugreek leaves.
- Blitz into a smooth paste using a hand blender or food processor. Remove from the pan and wipe clean slightly.
- Add another tablespoon of oil and turn to a high heat. Cook the finely sliced onion and mushrooms until soft and most of the water is removed from the mushrooms. Then add the paneer to get a little colour.
- Add the blitzed sauce back to the pan and bring to a boil. Simmer for another 10 minutes.
- Stir in the yogurt and garam masala before serving. Enjoy!