Paneer tikka masala is packed with flavor with a pan fry pieces of paneer until golden brown and then bathe them in a rich tomato sauce. The paneer tikka masala is so good that everybody want to lick the bowl.
Cook with tomatoes anything and it is called tikka masala. “Tikka” in Indian cuisine refers to pieces of meat or vegetables marinated in spices. “Masala” is the blends of spices in paste or powder form. Chicken tikka masala is a dish of cooked marinated chicken pieces that’s bathed in a rich tomato sauce which can be replaced by paneer in case of a vegetarian recipe.
There are many spices used in paneer tikka masala recipe, yet it is simple to cook. The paneer has a lovely flavorful crust on the outside, and it pair so well with the masala sauce.
The preparation for this paneer tikka masala is similar to chicken tikka masala in that you marinate the paneer in yogurt and spices. The yogurt helps coat the paneer pieces with spices. When pan frying the paneer, the yogurt forms a thin crust around the exterior. Pan fry the paneer first because they can burn easily. A 14-ounce block of paneer will yield a lot of pieces, cook the paneer in two batches. After cooking the first batch, wipe down the pan with a paper towel to get rid any burned black bits. The marinated paneer splatters a lot when you place them on the pan, so be careful. The second batch tends to cook a little quicker.
By the way, you’ll inevitably have some yogurt marinade left over. Never throw it away. Add it to the sauce towards the end. Heavy cream helps balance the acidity of the tomatoes and gives the sauce a lovely creaminess. Keep the calories down by using only 3 tablespoons of heavy cream. If you are truly averse to heavy cream, use 3 or 4 tablespoons of whole milk yogurt.
Paneer Tikka Masala goes great with tawa naan and roti for dinner. It can be served with a super quick jeera rice made in rice cooker.