Paneer Pulao goes to Srivalli’s Rice Mela event.
This exotic dish is for people with a milder tongue or you can cook them on the days when you are tired of the same dishes, but dont want to indulge in anything pungent but want something exotic at the same time and are lazy to go to a restaurant. Most of the ingredients can be found at home except paneer, but since nowadays we get frozen paneer even that problem is solved. Paneer Pulao is mildly spiced, exotic and tasty, you can safely cook it for a party and it will surely be a hit.
If using frozen mix vegetables – 1½ cup
Ginger grated – 2 tsps
Green chillies - 2
Asafetida - 1/2 teaspoon
Bay leaves - 3-4
Cumin seeds – 1 tsp
Everest Shahi Pulao/Biryani Masala – 2 tsps
Salt as per taste
Oil – 4-5 tbsps
Wash the paneer and then cut into chunky cubes, then fry them lightly (don’t deep fry until brown) and keep aside. Fresh paneer tends to get squashed while cooking so I treat them differently. Now, wash the rice and soak in water for about half an hour. Chop the vegetables into square chunks, I used frozen mix vegetables pack which has beans, carrot, corn and peas. I just soaked the frozen vegetables in water to thaw them, rinsed them once and drained the water completely and kept aside. Make a paste of one onion, 2 green chillies and the ginger. Chop the onions keep aside.
In a pan, Add 2 tbsps oil, Add cumin seeds and Bay leaves. When the cumin seeds start to fry, add one onion chopped and fry until transparent, then add the onion-ginger-chilly paste, add the Shahi Pulao/Biryani Masala and fry until the oil separates from the masalas. Add the vegetables, fry for about 5-7 minutes. Add diced vegetables, stir-fry for few minutes. Then drain the water from the soaked rice, add. Add soaked rice and mix with the masalas and vegetables, add salt and fry for 3-4 minutes. Add in the lightly fried paneer cubes. Mix lightly without squashing the paneer. Add 3 cups water (ratio is 1:1(1 cup rice : 1 cup water + 1 cup for the vegetables), but subjective to how old or new the rice is, how long the grains are etc.) and pressure cook upto 3 whistles. Open the cooker, stir the Pulao gently and serve hot. For those who like it spicy, you can have it with a fiery curry. Enjoy the Paneer Pulao.