Sunday, February 10, 2013

A hot and spicy bowl of Vegetable Jalfrezi

I have been MIA from my blog. Last year was a momentous one for me I became a mother and well another great thing that happened was I got to spent a good five months with my own ma learning the tricks of being one from the best one. This was the longest time I have spent with my mother after I moved to Bombay for my studies and it has been the most wonderful time of my life. I have written earlier also that my mummy is a terrific cook, I got to savor my favourite foods when she was here and found out that over the years she too has been experimenting a lot with food. I am sharing one of her recent recipes which she has reverse engineered from her favourite take-out place menu - Vegetable Jalfrezi. I have no idea why it is called "Jalfrezi" but I love the flavor of this vegetable and the fact that it is simple and quick can be paired with Roti, Bread or Rice or eaten plain straight from the bowl. Another good thing about this one is that you can add / subtract and or substitute vegetables of your choice. I am giving you the version I enjoy.

P.S: I forgot to thank my good friend Subha for patiently clicking the pics ...

14 Oz Paneer
2 Medium Onions
1 Green Bell Pepper
10-15 Green Beans (less or more is upto you)
1 or 2 Carrots 
1 Tbsp Ginger / Garlic Paste (More ginger less garlic, can also add green chillies if you like it hot)
2 Tbsp Tomato Ketchup
1-2 Tbsp White Vinegar
2 tsp Corriander Powder
1 tsp Turmeric Pdr
1-2 tsp Red Chilli Powder (More if you like it spicy)
Salt to taste
2 Tbsp Oil

1. Chop the onions in big cubes, similarly cut bell peppers in big chunks, peel and chop carrots into rounds or if they are really big in half moon shape. String the beans and cut them in 2 inch pieces.
2. Cut Paneer into cubes. I like big chunks for this recipe. Also, here in the US I use Nanak brand Paneer and I like to wash the Paneer cubes with cold water and microwave them for 2 minutes before adding them to the wok as I think it yields softer paneer.
3. In a wok heat the oil, add onions and sauté for a couple of mins till slightly translucent but not mushy. They should still have a crunch in them.
4. Add ginger and garlic paste saute, add carrots, beans, paneer and mix. Add salt and seasoning sauté till vegetables and paneer are coated with spices. Add bell pepper and mix. Now add the ketchup and vinegar, mix it all together. Let cook for a couple of minutes. All the veges should still have a bite more like chinese stir-fry veges take care not to overcook else you will end up with a regular mixed vegetable.
5. Adjust salt, spices and sweet and tart balance by adding more ketchup and / or vinegar as needed. You can also add a couple of spoons of water if you want it a little bit on the wet side.
6. Put it in a bowl and enjoy. Even my non-Paneer loving husband enjoys this one ...

NOTE: I will be honest, I usually eyeball and add my ingredients so most of my recipes are approximations rather than exact quantities. You can adjust the quantities to suit your taste buds.

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