How to cook… Manchurian Paneer


Serves 4 as a main dish

Manchurian Paneer is an Indo-Chinese dish that combines the flavours and cooking techniques of both India and China. The chunks of cheese are fried in a chilli batter then stir fried with garlic, ginger, pepper and spy sauce and top with spring onions. The cuisine emerged from a group of Chinese people, now numbering 2,000, in Kolkata (formerly Calcutta) and there are a number of restaurants serving the hybrid cuisine in Chinatown in the city.

What you need…
• 500g paneer, cut into chunks
• 10 Tablespoons oil
• 0.5 yellow or green pepper, cut into chunks
• 0.5 red pepper, cut into chunks
• 1 teaspoon garlic paste
• 0.5 teaspoon ginger paste
• 0.5 onion, cut into chunks
• 3 chillies, chopped
• 2 Tablespoons tomato ketchup
• 2 spring onions, chopped
• 0.5 teaspoon cracked black pepper

For the batter
• 5 Tablespoons plain flour
• 1.5 Tablespoons corn flour
• 1 teaspoon chilli powder
• pinch of salt
• water, as needed

How to make it
1. Mix the first four ingredients of the batter then add the water bit by bit to form a thin paste.
2. Add the paneer chunks and ensure all are well coated by the paste.
3. Heat the oil to a medium-hot heat then add the paneer chunks until they brown on all sides (about 3 minutes). Turn them frequently to avoid them burning. Remove the paneer from the oil and set aside on a paper towel.
4. Turn down the heat, add the peppers and cook for 2 minutes.
5. Add the garlic and ginger and fry for 1 minute.
6. Add the onion and chillies and fry for 2 minutes.
7. Add the soy sauce, tomato ketchup and 4 tablespoons of the leftover batter paste and stir fry for 1 minute.
8. Add the paneer and fry until all the ingredients are cooked through. The peppers and onions should be softened but not mushy.
9. Sprinkle the spring onions and crack the black pepper on top and serve fresh.

This also makes an excellent and unusual starter. Just half the quantities.

Manchurian Paneer is one of the great Indo-Chinese dishes combining flavours from Indian and Chinese cuisine.

If you like this you should try our
Sag PaneerChilli PaneerButter ChickenButter PaneerPrawn KormaMedium Chicken CurryChicken MadrasChicken VindalooChicken BhoonaChicken Dopiaza

I asked my friend if he’d like more chillies with his paneer … “No whey!”, he cried.

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