Indochinese Schezwan Paneer

2 tbsp red chili paste (or 7 to 8 red chilies)
Hot water to soak chilies

For batter:
3 to 4 tbsps corn flour
3 to 4 tbsps all purpose flour or maida (organic)
salt as needed
1/4 tsp pepper
water as needed to make the batter
200 grams paneer

to make schezwan paneer:
oil for deep frying
1 to 1 1/2 tbsp oil for seasoning
3/4 tbsp. garlic chopped finely
1/2 tbsp. ginger chopped finely
1/2 tsp schezwan pepper or 3 to 4 crushed (optional)
2 tbsps spring onion whites chopped
2 to 3 tbsps celery chopped (optional)
salt as needed
3/4 to 1 tsp sugar
3/4 tbsp soya sauce
3/4 tbsp vinegar ( or tomato sauce)
4 tbsps water
1/4 cup capsicum (optional)
1/2 to 3/4 cup water
1 tsp corn flour or corn starch or arrow root powder

Deseed & soak red chilies in hot water. Set aside for 30 mins. Blend them well with just 2 tbsps of water to a smooth or coarse paste. Discard the rest of the soaked water.

To a mixing bowl, add cornflour, maida, pepper and salt. Pour water just enough to make a free flowing batter of slightly thick consistency. Add the paneer bites and coat them in the batter well.

Heat oil in a kadai for deep frying. When the oil turns hot, drop the batter coated paneer in the hot oil. Fry them on a medium high flame until the paneer bites turn crisp. Drain them to a kitchen tissue.

Making schezwan paneer:

Heat oil in a pan or wok. Fry ginger garlic for a minute. Add spring onions, celery and schezwan peppers. Saute for 2 mins. Add red chili paste, salt and sugar. Fry for 2 to 3 mins. Remove the schezwan pepper.

Pour water and cook until the mixture leaves oil.Pour soya sauce and vinegar or tomato sauce. Mix and saute for a minute.

Add capscium and fry for 2 mins.

Mix corn flour with water. Pour that to the pan. Mix well and cook until the sauce thickens. Check the taste and adjust the spice and sourness as desired.
Turn off the stove. Cool this sauce a bit.

Add the paneer and mix well to coat the sauce.

Serve the schezwan paneer hot with noodles or fried rice.

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