Last updated on 29-Nov-2021
Hello, VHPs (Viva Happy Peeps)! When I posted this recipe, it’s a rainy and cold Monday in Toronto, and that got me thinking of warmth and spices. On days like that, nothing better than a quick and easy curry to brighten up a #meatlessmonday, right? But don’t reserve this recipe just for gloomy Mondays, make it anytime! It may not be totally traditional, but it’s delicious and I’m sure you’ll make it again and again.
“Curry” refers to a combination of spices and herbs, and also to the dishes prepared with them, very common in Indian and other south-Asian cuisines, as well as other places around the world. The ingredients and quantities for each may vary from one person/manufacturer to the next, and there are endless combinations out there.
Look for curry powder and garam masala on the international aisle of your grocery store or in specialty stores (South Asian or Caribbean). The curry will taste different depending on the spice combination you use. If you don’t want it to be spicy, omit the chilli flakes and make sure you buy a mild curry powder and masala.
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 package of paneer cheese (about 400g) cut into small cubes
Or see substitutions below
- Salt to taste
- 2 tsp curry powder
- 1 tsp garam masala
- ½ tsp cumin
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1/2 tsp of chilli flakes (optional)
- ½ cup tomato sauce
- 1 can coconut milk (for cooking, not the beverage)
- 1 cup frozen green peas (optional)
- Chopped fresh cilantro (optional)
- First, measure your spices in a small bowl and reserve. Measure the tomato sauce and open the can of coconut milk and set aside.
- In a large pan, heat oil and sauté the onions until softened (2-3 minutes). Add the garlic and cook for another minute.
- Add the paneer(or substitute ingredients), season with salt, and cook for a few minutes, or until some of the edges start to brown.
- Add the spices to the pan and mix to coat the other ingredients and become fragrant.
- Pour in the tomato sauce and coconut milk. Stir to combine, add the frozen peas (if using) and simmer for about 5 minutes.
- Sprinkle with the fresh cilantro (if using) and serve with basmati rice, paratha/naan or a salad.
If trying to limit the carbs, serve with cauliflower rice or a mix of basmati rice (or brown rice) with quinoa – I usually do 1 part of each. And check out this Low-Carb Naan Bread.
Instead of paneer, the same curry sauce can be used with a similar quantity of chickpeas and/or diced vegetables (e.g. mushrooms, cauliflower, potatoes, carrots, eggplant, zucchini, etc.), and it becomes a vegan recipe.
This recipe also works well with chicken (1 lb boneless/skinless chicken breast or thighs, cut into bite-size pieces), but you will have to simmer a bit longer (10-15 mins).