Chilli Paneer Recipe|Popular Indo Chinese Appetizer Chilli Paneer Recipe
Chilli Paneer is one of the most popular Indo Chinese Vegetarian dish(Desi Chinese).
Make restaurant style Chilli Paneer at home which is a favourite among kids and grown ups alike!! One of the favourite party starter that can be turned into main course with gravy. With Chowmein/Hakka Noodles or Fried rice makes a lip smacking, wholesome and filling meal.
Indo Chinese Cuisine is very popular in India. One of the most ordered in restaurants or take ways. At almost all the parties or gatherings you will find at least one Indo Chinese dish as starter or in main course. Indo-Chinese Cuisine/ food is the adaptation of Chinese dishes as per the Indian tastebuds.
What is Chilli Paneer or Paneer Chilli
Paneer or Indian Cottage Cheese pieces are deep-fried and sautéed in sauces like Soy sauce, chili sauce, and vinegar that gives it a tangy and sweet taste.
It is the combination of flavors from garlic, ginger and green chilies along with the sauces that makes this dish so special.
The hotness of chilies can be adjusted as per one's taste. This recipe here is the dry version of Paneer Chilli, you can also make another version with gravy, that we can have with rice(fried/steamed) and noodles.
My kids, like many other kids love Paneer dishes and Chilli Paneer is their favorite. Most of the Friday/weekend evenings they will ask me to make for dinner.
How to make Chilli Paneer
It is made by deep-frying Paneer pieces in flour and cornflour batter. But you can also make it pan fried like I do it. Since I make it quite often I usually skip the deep-frying part and pan-fry the paneer cubes dusted with cornflour, in little oil.
Homemade Paneer/Indian Cottage Cheese is good enough to use in the recipe if is firm, else use store-bought paneer as homemade paneer can sometimes break or crumbles if it is too soft. I avoid keeping Paneer in the freezer as freezing affects its texture. If store-bought paneer is hard, you can keep it in lukewarm water for a few minutes, it will soften.
Tofu can be used in place of Paneer/Indian Cottage Cheese for vegans, but the texture of the final dish won't be same as Tofu has different taste and texture.
Use different colored bell peppers as it enhances the look and gives a nice crunch to the dish.
So come, let's gather our ingredients and make Chilli Paneer to tickle our taste buds.
Recipe Card for Chilli Paneer
For Paneer Cubes
- 2 Cups Paneer 300 gms
- 2 tbsp Cornstarch/Cornflour(in India)
- 2 tbsp Whole Wheat Flour/All Purpose Flour
- 1 tsp Freshly Ground or Black Powder optional
- 1/2 tsp Red Chilli powder (optional)
- 1 tsp Salt as required for paneer pieces
- 1 Cup Bell Peppers(mixed or as per choice) chopped into cubes: or as required(optional)
- 1/2 Cup Onion(cubed)
- 1 tsp Finely Chopped Ginger
- 6-7 Cloves Garlic(Finely chopped)
- 2-3 Green Chillies or as required
- Spring Onion Greens for garnishing
- 1-2 tbsp Oil for sauting veggies
- Oil for frying batter coated paneer cubes
Sauce Mix for Chilli Paneer
- 2 tbsp Soy Sauce
- 1 tsp Vinegar
- 2 tbsp Tomato Ketchup
- 1-2 tbsp Chilli Sauce/Siracha use as required
- 1-2 tbsp Cornstarch/Cornflour(in India)
- 1/4 Cup Water or as required
- In a bowl add and mix all the ingredients under sauce mix section. No need to add salt as sauces already have sauce in it. Mix nicely.
- Make slurry with another 2 tbsp of cornstarch in 1/4 cup water.
- Finely chop ginger and garlic, cube onion and bell peppers.
- Cut Paneer into cubes.
- In a bowl add flour, 2 tbsp cornstarch, red chilli powder, salt and make thick batter with water. Make sure no lumps are there.
- Dip paneer cubes in batter, coat nicely. For restaurant style Paneer Chilli, make thick batter. If you like thinly coated paneer cubes make thin batter. For pan frying paneer cubes see below.
- Heat oil in a pan/kadhai, add paneer pieces and fry it. Fry for 5-6 minutes till the pieces are light brown. Don't fry for long as paneer can get hard and chewy.
- Take out pieces from the pan and keep aside in a dish/plate.
- Add 1-2 tbsp of oil to a pan, when it is hot enough, add chopped garlic saute for a minute, add green chillies and onions and bell peppers saute for another 2 minutes on high flame. Don't fry for long else onions and bell pepper will lose the crunch.
- Add sauce mix and then fried paneer cubes. Mix well. Take care not to break paneer pieces.
- Add the cornstarch slurry that we prepared in beginning and mix nicely so that it coats the paneer pieces evenly.
- Cook for another 2-3 minutes. Take off the flame and add spring onion greens on it and serve hot!!
Pan Fried Paneer
- If you want to skip frying of paneer cubes.. then follow this..Take paneer pieces into a bowl and add cornflour to it. Coat the paneer pieces evenly with cornstarch. Leave it for few minutes. Pan fry the cubes in 2-3 tbsp of oil.
- You can also grill paneer pieces in a pan. For this skip making batter, fry directly in 1-2 tbsp of oil.
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