Friday, May 17, 2013

Paneer kulcha with handi matar

Tonight's Menu
Handi Matar (dry yellow peas)
Paneer Kulcha
Tomato Onion Salsa
Paneer kulcha with handi matar

All Delhites have at some point or other indulged in this delish almost fat free spread. Remember the handi matar wala, with the copper handi full of dry yellow peas smoking hot and an assortment of sides - onion tomato salsa, green chillies, lemon slices served with baked kulchas.

This meal is inspired by those handi matar meals. Very simple and delicious. You can pair it with store bought kulchas or make your own. This meal only requires a bit of planning to pre-soak the peas and rise the dough.

Handi matar
Handi Matar
Ingredients: (serves 4-5)

2 cups dry yellow peas (matar)
3 cups water
salt to taste
2 tomatoes chopped
1 medium red onion finely chopped
large handful fresh coriander chopped
2-3 green chilies chopped (optional)
lime juice to taste
chaat masala to taste
  1. Soak the peas in water overnight. 
  2. Put peas along with all the water it was soaked in and salt into a pressure cooker. Cook on high till the first whistle. Simmer for 7 minutes (if you keep for more time the peas will become very mushy). 
  3. Take out of heat and let the pressure cooker cool down. 
  4. Meanwhile combine all ingredients for the salsa and keep it ready. 
  5. Open the pressure pan and give peas alight stir. If they are too dry for you then add a little boiling water. 
  6. Serve topped with salsa alongside paneer kulcha. 
Paneer kulcha in the oven ready to turn over

Paneer Kulcha
Ingredients: (makes 10 -12)
2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 t salt
1 tsp sugar
2 tsp oil
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 cup plain yogurt
1/2 cup milk
250 gm Paneer grated
salt to taste
handful fresh coriander chopped
1 inch ginger grated
2-3 green chilies chopped fine
  1. Mix all ingredients for filling and keep aside. 
  2. Take flour in a big bowl and add all the dry stuff. Knead it into a medium soft dough using yogurt and milk. 
  3. Cover and keep in a warm place for minimum 4 hours. 
  4. An hour before serving divide the dough into 12 equal parts. Divide the filling also into 12 equal parts. 
  5. Place the filling in the middle of the dough and lift the edges to bring them to the center to make a sealed pouch. Roll in between your palms to form a ball. Cover with a damp cloth and let rest for 40-50 minutes before cooking. 
  6. Heat oven at the grill setting to the max allowed temperature for your oven. 
  7. Roll each pouch into a 4-5 inch diameter circle. Sprinkle some kalonji (onion seeds) on top or some fresh coriander chopped. Press gently with your hand to stick these onto the kulcha. 
  8. Place 3-4 circles in a non stick cookie sheet and put in the oven. Keep an eye on these as the first side is done in a matter of 4-5 minutes. When you see lightly browned spots on the top turn them over and cook for another 1-2 minutes. Remove from the oven, serve hot as is or with a dollop of butter. 
  9. Potato filling can be used instead of paneer. Just substitute boiled potato for paneer and proceed.

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