I am sure all of you have done this on many ocasions. When I am frustrated, mad, angry or just plain pissed... I cook and clean. I vent all of my woes on that poor ingredient that needs to be at the sharp end of a knife. My poor chopping board has been the recipient of many a bash and bang, and my onions and tomatoes cringe when I come at them in that mood. Copious amounts of butter/ oil/ cream get poured into the food, and nothing gets spared in the house. Floors get vigorously cleaned, bathrooms shine, furniture glistens, surfaces sparkle, carpets get beaten... damn, I should get angry more often, right?
Now that you know what I do... you might as well as know why. Its bleeding Air Canada. What other airline in the world can be so contemptuous of its customers? Not content with driving other, smaller airlines out of business, they now hold such a monopoly, that they can pretty much quote you fares out of their ass. Kay and I always got incredibly frustrated with them... for example, their local flights from one small town to another would usually end up costing us more that out entire return flight from, say, Manchester to Vancouver. Such a massive pain in the posterior that!
So basically, this means another long seventeen hour drive to the in-laws then. Argh! And don't even get me started on mobile phone prices...
Coming back to the paneer though... (shakes head at AC)... I was intending to make these tikkas for a while. It just got brought forward a bit, since my frustration with AC meant that I needed to cook! And cook, I did. These tikkas are a classic, but like AC, are a bit of a pain, ocasionally, as they simple won't keep. You make them, you eat them straightaway, otherwise they will taste like rubber.
The nice thing about them is that these guys can be cooked any way that takes your fancy. Grill them barbeque them, fry them... its all up to you. I like to do them under the grill, but I have barbequed them, and the smokiness that this imparts to these tikkas is nothing short of amazing! A squidge of lime or lemon juice is all they need to bring out their soft, spicy, intense flavour. If you can make the effort, homemade tandoori masala is really worth it, just for the lovely fresh, spiciness that it brings to this dish. However, store bought will work just fine, just remember to check if there is already salt added to the mix. If there is, then reduce the amount of salt that you use for your seasoning.
And of course, if you're in the mood I am in right now, that nice chilled beverage in that glass you see beside the paneer is sorely needed :)
For the marinade:
5 tablespoons plain yoghurt
3 tablespoons homemade tandoori masala
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 inch piece of ginger, grated
1/2 tablespoon unscented oil (don't use extra virgin)
Salt to taste (I used about a teaspoon of coarse sea salt)
Small handful fresh cilantro (coriander) and mint, chopped roughly
Lime and lemon wedges
Chop the paneer into even 1 inch cubes.
Whisk together the ingredients for the marinade. Taste and adjust seasoning.
Pour the marinade over the paneer cubes and marinate for at least 1 - 2 hours.
Preheat a grill or the barbeque, and grill for between 4 - 5 minutes, turning a couple of times, until the paneer begins to just lightly char around the edges.
Remove to a serving plate or bowl, sprinkle over the fresh herbs and serve immediatley with wedges of lime and lemon to squeeze over.