Matar Paneer
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Test Kitchen Approved Recipe

Freshly made paneer cheese and sweet peas add delicious textural and flavor contrasts to a rich curry sauce. 

4 servings


  • For paneer:

  • 2 quarts whole milk
  • 1/4 cup distilled white vinegar
  • For curry:

  • 3 Tbsp. vegetable oil, divided
  • 2 Tbsp. Tandoori Seasoning
  • 1 (14 oz.) can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 Tbsp. honey
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt
  • Kosher Salt, to taste

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This paneer recipe yields about 2 cups of cubed paneer (about 12 oz.). For a time-saver, use premade paneer.


For paneer: In a medium pot over medium-high heat, bring milk to a boil, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and stir in vinegar. Cover and let sit for 10 min. Milk should be separated, with watery yellow whey and solid white grains. Strain mixture slowly through a colander lined with a clean kitchen towel or doubled over cheesecloth. Rinse thoroughly with cold water. Gather corners of the cloth and twist to close. Squeeze paneer to remove excess liquid. Gently form cloth-enclosed cheese into a thick disk and move to a large plate. Top with another plate and a heavy item to create a press. Place the cheese-and-press setup in the refrigerator for 1 hour. Unwrap cheese and cut into 1-inch cubes. Chill until ready to use.

For curry: Heat 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add cubed paneer and sear on both sides, about 1 min. per side. Remove paneer and place on a plate lined with a paper towel. Add remaining 1 Tbsp. oil and Tandoori Seasoning to skillet. Toast, stirring constantly, for about 20 seconds, or until aromatic (be careful not to burn the spice). Add tomatoes and honey and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 5 min. Stir in peas, yogurt, and paneer. Heat just until everything is warmed through, about 2 min. Season with salt to taste and serve hot.


Serve with basmati rice, naan, and chopped cilantro.

Ashlee Redger, Savory Spice Test Kitchen



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