This is a delightfully simple dish that is brightened up by this beautiful coconut sambal (that I could just eat by the spoonful). Paneer cheese is one of my favourite things to put in a sauce and this is a nice change from my usual tomato based Matar Paneer.
The original recipe called for Halloumi, mostly because Paneer is not always easy to find. I make my own Paneer from fresh raw milk and it’s SO easy, give it a try.
Summer came late this year so I had this recipe put aside waiting for the green peppers to turn orange, red or yellow.
Paneer in a Pepper Sauce with Coconut Sambal
For the Curry:
1 or 2 x 225g blocks of Paneer (if you use one, its just more saucy 😉 ), patted dry and diced into 1cm cubes (or make your own)
2 red peppers, roughly chopped
2 red onions, roughly chopped
4 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp of salt
6 cloves of garlic, chopped
zest and juice of 1 lemon plus extra wedges (add juice and taste before adding all !)
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
A handful of coriander leaves
For the Sambal:
150g desiccated coconut
1 clove of garlic
zest and juice from half a lime
a small handful of coriander leaves
Add the sambal ingredients to a food processor and blitz until combined. Transfer to a serving bowl and set aside.
Heat 2 tbsp of olive oil in a large frying pan over a high heat and add the paneer cubes. Stir-fry for 5-7 minutes or until golden-brown. Then transfer them to a plate and set them aside until later.
Return the pan to the heat, add the remaining 2 tsp of olive oil and add the garlic. Stir-fry for a few minutes until the garlic starts to brown (carefful not to burn it). Remove and put aside. Pile in the onion, pepper and salt. Stir-fry until soft, about 10 minutes.
Add the zest and juice of the lemon, the turmeric and cumin seeds. Mix well, add 250ml of water and cook for another 10 minutes.
Transfer the sauce to a food processor or use a hand blender to blitz to a paste.
Return the paste to the pan and place over the heat. Stir in the paneer and mix in until warmed through. If it’s dry, add a splash of water to loosen it.
Transfer it to a serving bowl, scatter over some coriander leaves, the crispy fried garlic. Serve with some lemon wedges and sambal with basmati rice.
Bon Appetît !
**Adapted from a recipe by Nadiya Hussain