12 March, 2009

Paneer-Matar Parathas: Frozen Food Lovers Delight!

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Paneer-Matar Parathas

“The most remarkable thing about my mother is that for thirty years she served the family nothing but leftovers. The original meal has never been found.”
~Calvin Trillin



But I can easily argue there are many leftovers that taste better than the fresh ones and in my honest opinion Indian curries belong to that category of food that tastes best when served on next day or still after 2 days since it was cooked. And how can I even forget to mention one of my favourite rice dish Bisi Bele Bhath that builds more flavour when served on next day. So Mr. Trillin, think again. May be you been served the best tasting food all the way in the form of leftovers! ;)


These days our kitchen adventures are limited to twice or thrice a week. With our ever growing workload, which by the way is giving serious competition to Mt. Everest, we either don’t have the energy or mood to cook anything when we get back home. So it’s either leftovers or a canned soup which comes to our rescue as we absolutely loath the idea of ordering food from takeaways. Hence the great need to cook in bulk quantity and storing it in fridge or freezer has arisen and we have been cooking the foods that can be easily stored for long time.


One such food item that can be easily cooked in bulk and tucked in freezer is Parathas. Just the thought of rolling stuffed Parathas was biggest nightmare for me few months ago. I was known for creating funny looking roties that had very unique shape as that of different countries and states in world map. May be that was the reason I didn’t venture into stuffing and rolling the Parathas for quite a long time till one day I couldn’t hold the temptation of devouring freshly prepared Parathas with yogurt and spicy pickle. That’s how my love for homemade Parathas took different dimension and I have been enjoying the whole process of kneading, stuffing and rolling almost-perfect Parathas. And best thing about it is you can make them in big batches and freeze them to be savoured whenever you feel like. Don’t we just love leftovers?

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Paneer-Matar Parathas


There few basic tips for beginners when it comes to making Stuffed Parathas. First, don’t worry too much if you end up getting some funny shaped Parathas. Remember amoeba from your school biology classes? My roties were compared to them in the beginning by my family and friends and surprisingly, the very last crumbs of roties were devoured by the same people. So its taste that matters, not how they look. Second, go for the easy and simple stuffing/filling for Stuffed Parathas in the beginning. IMHO, the best stuffing is simple mashed potatoes, with no lumps, flavoured with spice powder. As long as you have well mashed potatoes it is quite easy to stuff them and roll. Take small quantity of stuffing and roll them into parathas or place the stuffing between two rolled chapattis and seal the edges. Once you are comfortable with simple stuffing you can try with other fillings like cauliflower, radish, zucchini, carrot, green peas etc. The choices are endless. Third, the quality of wheat flour or Atta is very important when it comes to soft, fluffy Parathas. I prefer Annapurna, Ashirwad and Pillsbury Chakki Atta brands where they use the age old technique of grinding the whole wheat into fine powder. I have tried other brands but they don’t come half as good as the qualities of these three brands (hey, I am not paid by these companies to endorse their product). Given a choice I would opt for freshly ground Atta from girNi shops like my Amma. If you keep these basic tips in mind, it won’t be too long for you to get perfectly shaped stuffed parathas.


Coming to today’s recipe, we have delicious Paneer-Matar Parathas. Sweet green peas and grated Indian cottage cheese flavoured with green chillies and heady spice powder is one of the simple yet exciting combinations. Instead of mashing the cooked peas, I roughly ground them in food processor which helps you to get evenly stuffed parathas without oozing. When these Paneer-Matar Parathas are served with a bowl of cool, creamy yogurt and spicy pickle along with fresh vegetable salad it becomes a comforting and very satisfying meal. I am sending this stack of Paneer-Matar Parathas to dear Roma who is guest hosting JFI-Wheat, an event started by Indira of Mahanandi.

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Paneer & Peas Filling for Paneer-Matar Parathas

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Paneer-Matar Paratha (Flat bread of whole wheat flour stuffed with spiced Indian cottage cheese and green peas)
Prep Time: 20 mins
Cooking Time: 30 mins
Makes: 10-12
Recipe Level: Intermediate to Difficult
Spice Level: Low to Medium
Serving Suggestion: With any curry of your choice or with a bowl of raita/yogurt and pickle

Ingredients:
For Paratha:
2-2½ cups Atta/Whole Wheat Flour
¼ cup Yogurt
1-2 tbsp Oil/Ghee
Warm Water for kneading
Salt to taste

For the Stuffing:

1½ cups Paneer/Indian cottage Cheese, grated
1 cup Green Peas
1 small Red Onion, finely chopped
3-5 Green Chillies, finely chopped (Adjust acc to taste)
1 tsp Garam Masala
½ tsp Jeera/Cumin Powder
Salt to taste

Other Ingredients:
Little Atta/Whole Wheat flour for dusting
Little Oil/Ghee
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Paneer-Matar Parathas

Method:
For the Dough:
Sieve atta and mix in salt, oil/ghee and yogurt.
Slowly add warm water little at a time and knead well to make stiff dough.
Cover and keep it aside for at least half an hour.

For Stuffing:
Place green peas in a microwave safe bowl with lid. Add pinch of salt and cook at high power for 3-5 minutes. Drain the water produced during cooking and let it cool for a while. Now you can either mash it using a potato masher or use food processor. I usually go for the latter. Place cooked green peas, garam masala and salt to taste in a food processor and grind to coarse paste. Mix this paste with grated paneer, finely chopped onion and green chillies and mix well. If possible use your hand to combine all these ingredients. Make small lime sized balls and keep them aside.

For the Paratha:
Knead dough again for a minute or two and make equal lemon sized balls.
Roll this dough ball in flour and place them on a flat surface. Flatten it little using your palm and roll them using a rolling pin into thick poories of 4 inch in diameter.
Place one panner-matar ball in the centre. Cover and seal the ends and roll again, dusting flour if necessary, into ½ cm thick roties using rolling pin.
Mean while, heat a griddle at high flame and lower it to low-medium flame.
Gently dust off the excess flour and place Stuffed Paratha on hot griddle and cook on both the sides till brown spots start to appear on top and the parathas are cooked well. Apply little ghee/oil if desired.
Serve hot Panner-Matar Parathas immediately with any curry or with plain yogurt and pickle of your choice and enjoy.

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Paneer-Matar Parathas with Yogurt & Pickle


Notes:
If you find it too difficult to roll the parathas with stuffing, add ¼-½ cups of maida/all purpose flour when kneading the dough. Maida gives little elasticity to the dough and helps in rolling the stuffed parathas without the stuffing oozing out.
Make sure that you drain any excess water generated while cooking the green peas. The filling should be dry or else it will ooze out when you roll it into paratha.
The leftover parathas can easily be frozen. To do this, cut few square sheets of butter paper or baking sheet of equal size so that it covers the paratha well. Place a paratha on one sheet and cover it with another square sheet. Place another on top of it and repeat till all the parathas are over. Place this in a large zip lock bag and store it in a freezer. It is better to write down the date on which the parathas were cooked. I usually use them by one month.

71 comments :

  1. Lovely Sia..this looks so delicious! Love the pics.

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  2. Paneer matar parathas look yummy...great pictures...

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  3. How can you get such perfect circles all the time? I have crossed the amoeba stage to the world map stage! Photos look amazing-as usual!

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  4. I am drooling over the pics. Am yet to read the post. The flower shaped dough is stunning.

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  5. Wow drool wothy parathas. I was thinking of Aloo parathas for dinner. This sets me in dear. Tempting and alluring clicks....

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  6. Oh those amazing parathas. Leftovers or even a year old they make any meal grand. The first time I ever saw them other than a restaurant was at my friends, when she said that she made them herself, I was in awe of her skills for a while. She did come home one weekend and teach me and I have been in her debt ever since.

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  7. That looks oh-so-delicious, Sup! Love the raw onion in the stuffing. I've actually started making parathas too, after looking at all the yummy parathas you made! Not as difficult as I thought, once I actually ventured into it.

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  8. I totally agree some of the indian dishes are muh tastier on the second day.
    Parathas look so yumm.
    I must make them once, just that if i give just parthas withpickles my hubby and daughter would say were is the sides for them.

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  9. Paratha's look yummy. I too am famous for making funny shaped paratha's :D I have made green peas paratha but adding paneer is new to me. Will try next time

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  10. flawless parathas,freezing them is certainly the best way to enjoy them throughout the busy work days:)

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  11. Sia, Paratha looks very mouthwatering. I am hungry now Can I have this plate?

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  12. I completely agree with you, leftovers taste soo good .. loved the parathas sia, as usual there are some great pics

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  13. Lovely paratha !!! and a Great combination of yoghurt and pickle makes me drool.

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  14. I am really really hungry.. that piece with the yougurt & pickle is for me right? I love the bowl u made with the filling in it..
    I never make the filling with peas & paneer, but use the left over subzis to make paratha. yours are PERFECT circles Sia.
    Soma(www.ecurry.com)

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  15. Those are gorgeous! Not even a smidge of filling is out of the paratha...that is TALENT!

    Love the filling..anything with paneer is welcome here!

    cheers,trupti
    the spice who loved me

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  16. Wow, wonderful pics Sia, like parathas very much.. this looks so gud with smashed stuffing.. need to try :)!! Nice idea to freeze it..
    Ya, leftovers are tastier next day :)!!

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  17. I do the bulk kneading in the KitchenAid, divide the dough and freeze them in portions for later use. When I want to make Parathas, take one bag out, thaw and makes them. So easy, saves a lot of time!:)

    Parathas look yum. Last photo with pickle is mouthwatering, slurp! :D

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  18. Yummy parata Sia, especially i love paneer matar combination.Drooling......

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  19. Other than aloo stuffing, I don't even think of rolling stuffed parathas. It comes in all shapes and mess the countertop!
    But u really have passion for parathas I can say! They are simply perfect and delicous Sia.

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  20. I agree Sia...I hate ordering take out too and parathas are my choice of left over gourmet food. :-) Love this peas paneer version.

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  21. Gorgeous photos again..The parathas are looking perfect..I should try this paneer matar parathas soon..It looks so delicious..

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  22. Sia,
    I have to say once again, that I truly enjoy your blog and eagerly await each of your posts. Love it. The magnet effect is because of your immaculate presentation. KUDOS!

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  23. oh yummy! your paranthas are so well rounded and cooked. i am going to call u guru maiiya from now on :D
    And i love the presentation. how long have u been cooking for out of curiosity?

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  24. Parathas look perfect. Thanks for the cool tip on freezing parathas !

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  25. wow, gorgeous! Love that cute picture with filling in the middle of a cup-shaped roti. Mouth-watering Sia!

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  26. Yummy Paneer Parathas Sia....u have got a wonderful blog with amazing collection of recipes :).

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  27. thanks for your comments Sia.

    lovely parathas.. i can keep on eating these. looks delicious.

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  28. Sups.. Parathas are delicious.. U know Rocky makes the best aloo parathas... hey I gotta wait for atleast few months to try this recipe.. u know why.. i gotta keep away from cheese...

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  29. parathas look delicious. simply mouthwatering:)

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  30. Yum Yum Parathas..Totally agree with that left overs served the next day, tastes better than the fresh ones..Especially NV curries..The weather here is very cold today, could have those yummy parathas with pickle and curd..Lovely pics as usual..

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  31. My roti making skills are still very primitive, but I try. Your parathas look delicious. Thanks for the useful tips. I was planning to but Ashirwad atta this time, cos it looks and smells like atta and not like maida.

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  32. How appetizing those parathas look, Sia. I often stuff them with crumbled firm tofu when I get a yearning for paneer parathas. Lovely pictures.

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  33. Lovely parathas Sia..I am sure paneer stuffing will make it more delicious :)

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  34. awesome pic, hats off to your presentation

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  35. your parathas look so perfect! the filling hasn't spilled at all, nice and smooth. Its going to be a while until I get mine to look like this :D

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  36. You're my paratha queen. You love parathas no? :D me tooooooo!

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  37. You're my paratha queen. You love parathas no? :D me tooooooo!

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  38. Leftovers can do wonders sometimes! I absolutely love leftovers.. Parathas look gorgeous, Sia!

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  39. One can get infinitely creative with stuffed parathas. This is a brilliant one. Curry and roti in one :)

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  40. Right up my alley! slurrrrrrrrrrrrrrrp! sooooooooooper!!

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  41. sia.. yummy cobination..its been such long time i didnt have parathas..

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  42. Sia,
    I feel like snatching that bite from your hand ;)
    Awesome pictures & perfect parathas. Even now I make amoeba shaped rotis. As you mentioned, I dont mind as long as they are tasty ;)

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  43. Love it Sia,too tempting. The picture with the filling ball in the dough container is too tempting and should I say a work of art.Truly delightful,comforting and filling.I missed several of your posts and have got a lot to catchup

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  44. Sia, Parathas look absolutely perfect and the last pic is yummy...Mouthwatering..Am really tempted dear now...

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  45. Hi,
    Just wanted to drop in a line and let you know of the “Baking Event –Calling all Foodies” hosted by me at the foodie site www.ifood.tv. You are invited to be part of this event that aims to unite bloggers to some great baking this month. The details are all here http://www.ifood.tv/blog/baking_event_calling_all_foodies

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  46. Totally agree with you that leftover food tastes better. I love parathas, very easy to fix and filling too...in fcat, I often make parathas for my lunch, mostly from leftover veggies!
    And your parathas...they are absolutely, perfectly round.

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  47. Yummy mouth watering paratha's Sai.Your photos are so amazing.

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  48. Awesome clicks..i cant take my eyes from the pictures, wat a droolworthy parathas...

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  49. LOvely...prefect one for anytime sia!

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  50. a great recipe with some great pictures

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  51. Looks lovely! I'm drooling over your pictures... The cup made with dough looks fabulous!

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  52. I have always been awestruck by your blog,snaps and writing ... leaving a line today. The snaps are awesome Sia! And love the combi of matar with the regular paneer. :-) And the parathas have such thick stuffing without breaking out ... is indeed a feat! :-)

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  53. those are some perfect looking parathas sia..

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  54. hello... hapi blogging... have a nice day! just visiting here....

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  55. Lovely parathas looks delicious. Awesome click sia:)

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  56. I am a regular reader of ur blog,but never left a message.You have a lovely collection of recipes.With the inspiration of all you guys(foodie's) even i started a blog.Try to visit my blog once.
    http://thechefandherkitchen.blogspot.com/

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  57. I agree totally. There's a lot of food that tastes so much better the next day though I'm not sure I'd be happy eating leftovers regularly. The other two here would definitely not!! :)

    But frozen parathas are a different story altogether. In fact I have enough frozen dhal puris from last time to serve for lunch.

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  58. yummy parathas. the pics make me want to reach into the monitor and grab them. they are sooo yummy.

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  59. I remember telling my bf I did NOT like yogurt and would NOT eat it... then I saw him relishing a stuffed paratha with raita, and I gave it a try... ever since then, I crave a stuffed paratha with yogurt on a regular basis... I love all your different recipes... I will be giving them a try!

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  60. Hi - love your blog...and have tried out some off your tasty treats...there's an award waiting for you on my blog
    Corinne
    http://www.everydaygyaan.com/2009/03/another-awarding-experience.html

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    Keyword Directory

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  62. awesome! looks super yummy yum! I am drooling over the pics!

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  63. Yummy...thats one word I can say with all that pani in my mouth. Thanks for sharing that one bite with us. Last pic was tooooo tempting.

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  64. Some of the most DROOL-WORTHY paratha pics ever!

    Thanks for participating in JFI-Wheat.

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  65. Really nice way of using left overs......I am drooling over those parathas and amazing click dear

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  66. Wow ! nice click one should learn photography from u i Think ..lovely ..nice parata ...Thanks for the recipe

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  67. Hi Sia, thank you very much for visiting my blog...You have a wonderful collection of recipes here...I am new at making stuffed parathas, thanks for the step by step procedures... I should try this one soon :)

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  68. What a delicious recipe and loved the pics!

    I felt you were tempting me with those parathas!
    ... bringing it ever so close to my mouth!
    alas, it was only a mirage.

    Hope you guys are doing well

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  69. Wow it is so cute and informative,you will be successful with your blog
    please visit my site if you want to know more amazing tips about blogger :
    Zenplate
    Thanks much

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