Achari Paneer is a tangy spicy simple preparation of Paneer cheese in pickling spices. ‘Achar’ means Pickle and ‘Achari’ implies ‘pickle like’. The pickles referred to here are Indian style pickles and not dill pickles in brine.
The whole Achari concept took off a few years ago and achari paneer tikka now occupies place of pride on Indian menus next to your regular paneer tikka. I had blogged about Achari Alu a few years ago, but this week I came up with an even simpler (and tastier) version of the sauce.
Indians love pickles. Folks love Indian pickles. So anything that tastes like them has to be a winner, right? Given how diverse India is, even pickle recipes vary from state to state. The simplest or most common ingredients include fenugreek seeds or methi and mustard seeds. My fresh turmeric pickle recipe is a great example of a basic pickle, at least the kind of spices that are popular in Maharashtra. I have loved the Shan Achari Spice Mix and used it for many years. For this Achari Paneer, I recommend any mango pickle mix.
I used K-Pra Mango Pickle mix which is a popular brand in Maharashtra. Even Bedekar’s would be a good choice. In the US, most Indian grocery stores stock some kind of pickle mix. And Amazon of course never disappoints. Even if the pickle mix says its for chicken or meat, it can be used with vegetables (just check to make sure the ingredients are vegetarian).
Note: In case you do not get the Achari Spice Mix, substitute 2 Tbsp of ready made Mango Pickle of any brand. Patak’s is my favorite. Just choose medium, hot or extra hot according to your taste.
This recipe is super simple and takes hardly any time. But the results are certainly restaurant like. Want to impress someone with an exotic Indian dish? Look no further than this Achari Paneer.
Recipe details for Achari Paneer are as follows –
Achari Paneer is an exotic restaurant style dish that is quick, easy and ready under 30 minutes.
- 250g paneer
- 1-2 Tbsp Achari Masala
- 1 medium onion
- 1 tsp ginger
- 1 tsp crushed garlic
- 1 cup yogurt
- 1 medium onion chopped
- 1 green pepper chopped
- 2 tomatoes
- 2 tsp sugar
- 2 Tbsp vegetable oil
- Salt to taste
- Wash and cube the paneer into chunks of desired size.
- Whisk in the Achari Spice Mix with the yogurt. Add to paneer pieces and mix until coated.
- Make a paste of the ginger, garlic and one onion and set aside.
- Cube the onion and green pepper into pieces similar in size to the paneer.
- Heat 2 Tbsp oil in a wok
- Add the ginger garlic and onion masala paste and fry until pink. Add splashes of water to prevent the paste from sticking or burning.
- Add the green peppers and fry for a minute.
- Add cubed onion and fry for a minute.
- Now add the paneer and yogurt mixture and heat on a low flame.
- Add sugar and salt to taste.
- Simmer gently until yogurt is absorbed and some oil rises to the top.
- Add quartered tomatoes and switch off heat.
- Serve hot with roti or rice.
- Makes about 3 cups with thick sauce.
Calories are for Malai Paneer and fat content may be reduced by using lower fat paneer.