20 May, 2009

Tofu Matar: Why Not Try Something New Today?


Tofu Matar

Last week I was here, staying at one of the picturesque places of England. Our little cottage was tucked in between soothing sound of flowing river, breath taking landscape of mountains and miles of green fields. For once we were away from everyday hustle bustle and running around chasing deadlines and never ending word loads and I couldn’t help but feel blessed to be surrounded by Mother Nature in her warm bosom!

Every morning we woke up to tweeting birds and oh yes, braying sheep which was music to our ears compared to deafening alarm clock or noise from traffic. The weather God was unbelievably kind to us during our stay and everyday I felt the warmth of bright sun and his rays dancing on my face. As the puffy marshmallow-ey clouds floated on clear blue sky, puffy and soft bundle of woolly sheep were lazily munching the emerald green grass. And those little, cute lambs hopping and jumping around merrily were the constant reminder of my own childhood days! While buzzing bumble bees were soothing music to ears, the burst of colourful wild flowers were joy to eyes, and even the smell of earth was much better than the aroma of any expensive and exotic perfumes on my dressing table. Nature, free of all man made things, is a soothing balm to ones troubled spirit and heart! It was nothing short of heaven! It’s amazing to see how Mother Nature takes care of all her children, including us, by embracing us in her warm bosom. I, after a long time, felt at peace with my inner self…

Fast forward and I am back to reality of daily routine life! As much as I enjoyed my break; it feels good to be back to some kind of routine! After one week of indulgence in peaceful countryside retreat, I felt good to be back in familiar surrounding and especially to be cooking in my little kitchen. Since our fridge was almost empty except for few herbs, I used the ingredients in hand and prepared this delicious Tofu Matar by giving a twist to much loved Matar Paneer. Creamy tofu and lively and bouncy green peas literally dunked in creamy gravy of onion, tomato, cashew and almonds was match made in heaven! Addition of Kasuri Methi gave that ‘oomph’ factor to the curry and made it all the more enjoyable. Don’t be chuffed off by the list of ingredients as close inspection will show how simple this recipe is. Cook it for your Vegan friends or people like me who are fond of tofu and see them lick their plate clean! :)

Tofu Matar

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Tofu Matar (Tofu and sweet Green Peas cooked in creamy gravy of Almonds & Cashews)
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cooking Time: 20-30 mins
Serves: 5-6
Recipe Level: Medium
Spice Level: Medium
Serving Suggestion: With any Indian flat breads or with flavoured/steam cooked Rice

1 pack Tofu (approx 5X5 inch), cut into 1 inch cubes
1 heaped cup Green Peas, fresh/frozen
3 large Tomatoes or 1 canned Tomato, pureed
1 tbsp Kasuri Methi/Sun dried Fenugreek Leaves (Optional)
1 tsp Garam Masala
½ tsp Kitchen King Masala (Optional)
1 tsp Sugar
1 tsp Jeera/Cumin Seeds
1 tbsp Oil
2 tbsp Coriander Leaves, finely chopped
Juice of ¼ Lime/Lemon
Salt to taste

For Onion Paste:
1 large Onion, roughly chopped
¾ inch Ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
2 large cloves of Garlic
½ inch Cinnamon Stick
2 Green Cardamoms
2 Cloves
½ Star Aniseeds

For Almond-Cashew Paste:
8-10 Almonds, soaked in warm water for 10 mins and peeled
4-6 Cashews, soaked in warm water for 10 mins

Tofu Matar

Grind all the ingredients listed under onion and almond-cashew paste separately, with out adding any water, to smooth paste and keep aside.
Heat oil in a pan and add cumin seeds to it. When cumin starts to sizzle and turn golden red, add onion paste. Keep stirring for 6-8 mins till onion paste turns light golden brown and becomes one dry mass. Make sure that you cook this onion paste thoroughly or else the gravy will taste bitter.
Mix in sugar and kasuri methi leaves and stir for another minute or two. Next, add pureed tomatoes and mix well. Bring the mixture to gentle boil, about 4-5 mins.
Mix in garam masala, kitchen king masala and salt to taste and add about 1-1½ cups of water.
Reduce the heat to low and add tofu cubes and green peas and cover the lid. Let it cook undisturbed for 5 mins.
Mix in almond and cashew paste and stir well. Increase the heat to medium and let the curry cook uncovered for another 5-7 mins. The gravy will start to thicken at this stage. Adjust the seasoning and add little more water if you prefer little thin gravy.
Switch off the flame and squeeze in lime juice. Serve this delicious Tofu Matar garnished with coriander leaves and enjoy!

Those who don’t like Tofu can simply substitute it with Paneer. Shallow fry Paneer cubes in little ghee till both the sides turn golden red in colour. Keep them in a bowl of warm water till needed and proceed with the recipe.
And if you are not fond of Paneer and Tofu, simply substitute them with boiled, peeled and cubed potatoes.
Green peas can be substituted with black or Kabuli channa or chickpeas.


  1. looks so delicious nice replace ment for paneer and gravy looks so yum

  2. Once i tried tofu and i didn't like it, maybe i should try to make this dish with toffu.
    Looks beautiful.

  3. I have a packet of Tofu sitting in my fridge. Will use it follow by your recipe. Thanks for fantastic idea!:)

  4. Nice to know that you had fun :) The dish looks so rich and creamy...healthy toowith the tofu and nuts, love it!

  5. Tofu matar looks delicious and so healthy :)

  6. hi Sia
    Am a regular visitor to your blog all the recipes are yummy. photos looks great nice presentation.

    can we paneer instead of tofu?
    keep rocking

  7. again somethin yummy,.welcome bck,..:-)

  8. love this recipe... have a block of tofu sitting in my freezer... thanks for this recipe :)

    - Indhu (www.thayirsaadham.com)

  9. Love the post.A break does so much good and the way you describe the place is lovely.Love the tofu matar healthy and tasty

  10. Wow sia thats looking gorgeous.. Really the color of the gravy is tempting me.. As usual ur photos are fantastic. Yummy ....

  11. Hi Sia,
    I saw those pictures a couple of days back ...what an awsome place! lucky you!! glad u had a peaceful holiday :) and double glad that u r back :)great way to substitue paneer with tofu, loved the almond and cashew usage in the curry, gives the simple thingie an elevation in taste. Lovely snaps as always.
    Keep rocking!

  12. Hey Sups! Glad you had a wonderful vacation.... Tofu Matar looks delicious!!!

  13. The lake district is so very pretty, isn't it ? Been ages since we went there :-)

  14. This is more regular at home than matar paneer now! I always toast/fry the tofu before adding onto the gravy. The pic is, as usual, fab, Sia!

    And good to know you had fun on the vacation :)

  15. gotta try this in the weekend. i have all the ingredients - for once!

  16. Its true how much mother nature takes care of us...it gives us a wonderful feeling when we think abt it.Coming to the recipe,the pic looks perfect...wonderful click.I am not a tofu fan so will substitute it with paneer..yummy recipe:)

  17. Hi Sia, very glad to hear you throughly enjoyed your stay and had a refreshing break from routine life:-) I love the combination of tofu and matar, and will definitely be trying this.I have never combined almonds and cashew for a paste before, it was either almonds or cashews alone, so this seems more nutty and tastier too. I am so happy to see that the Kasuri methi and the masala are optional!

  18. It takes some time to get adjust to the taste of tofu....But recipes like this tempt to try and indulge....looks yum....

  19. I hardly use paneer these days. Like N, I toast the tofu! This dish of yours can wait- I HAVE to try Rengan revaya 1st!!!

  20. looks very tempting. so far have shied away from making tofu indian style...

  21. Thats a wonderful idea of replacing paneer.. Looks delicious! I like tofu!

  22. Rich & Gorgeous as usual.. :-D

  23. Glad you had a good time Sia. That place did look like heavenly. I like using tofu in Indian sauces. Love the tofu paired with peas.

  24. I have a funny story about the tofu gravies. When I came here to the US I used to make it almost every other day, and now until I read your post, I did not realize that it has been 2 years since I made it last. I used to love it so much, that I had a overdose... LOL

  25. I tried once but didn't appreciate much the tofu in this way. The pict is tempting!

  26. wow looks yummy...oh what a perfect picture dear.....

  27. Nice tofu recipe. Sounds and looks so good. Gorgeous picture. YUM!

  28. That sure looks so tempting sia...

  29. I just made this and it's delicious! Thanks for the lovely, aromatic recipe!

  30. @Justine, glad u enjoyed it :) Thanks for letting me know.


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