Sunday, 21 October 2012

Anar kali (A preparation of Cottage cheese with Pomegranate juice)

Anar Kali
Anar (Pomegranate) is a delicate and exotic composite fruit having red or brown from outside and partitioned from inside by thin yellow membrane. Inside each chamber of the fruit, red juicy little fruits with hard seed inside are present. These fruits of Pomegranate are rich in calcium, iron and vitamins.  Anar Kali is the preparation of paneer in Pomegranate fruit juice. An extremely tasty and easy to cook this preparation of cottage cheese provides lots of nutrition without adding fat content to your diet.
This preparation of paneer is to be made fresh and consumed. If it is prepared and kept for later use then the beautiful pink color of gravy changes to dull pink color. So make it fresh when you want to serve to your family and guests.

Preparation Time: 10 min
Cooking Time: 30 min
Servings: 4 large servings

Ingredients Required For Making Anar-Kali:
  • 250 gm. Cottage cheese.
Paneer (Cottage cheese)
  • 250 gm. Ripe Red Pomegranate
  • 10-15 Almonds
  • 10-15 Pistachios
  • 1 large Onion
  • 1 Tea spoon Thyme
  • 1/4Tea spoon Turmeric powder
  • 1 Tea spoon Red chili powder
  • Salt to taste
Direction For Making Anar-Kali:
  • Cut onion very fine.
Finely Cut Onions
  • Cut Almonds long and thin.
Almonds cut to long and thin pieces
  • Cut Pistachio Long and thin
Pistachios cut to long and thin pieces
  • Cut Paneer to 2-3 cm pieces.
Paneer (Cottage cheese) cut to pieces
  • Take the out the fruits of Pomegranate.
  • Grind the Pomegranate fruits in the mixer-grinder.
  • Strain the juice from the solid of the seeds.
  • Discard the solid, cover the juice and keep it aside.
Fresh Pomegranate juice
  • Juice can be taken out by the help of juicer also.
  • Take oil in a thick bottom wok and heat on high flame.
Oil being heated on high flame
  • When the oil is hot reduce the heat and add finely cut onion to the oil and cook till the onion pieces start getting light brown color.
Finely cut Onion added to hot oil and being cooked on low flame
Onion after  3 min. of cooking on low flame
Onion after 5 min. of cooking on low flame
Onions cooked to light golden brown color and ready for Almonds to be added (7-8 min. low flame cooking)
  • When the onion starts getting golden brown add Almond pieces and cook for one min. on low flame with continuous stirring.
Almonds added when the Onion becomes light golden brown
  • Add Pistachio and cook for one min. with continuous stirring.
Pistachios added to Onion and Almonds mixture
  • Add paneer pieces and mix nicely.
Paneer added to shallow fried onion and nuts
  • Cook on low flame for 2-3 min. with continuous careful stirring.
  • The paneer pieces will change the texture and the color of paneer will start gaining light golden color.
Paneer mixture ready for Pomegranate juice to be added
  • Add the juice, bring the flame to high and cook for a min.
Fresh Pomegranate juice added and cooked for min.
  •  Add Turmeric powder, Red chili powder, amchur, thyme and salt.
Amchur,Kasoori methi,Turmeric Red chili powder and salt added
  • Mix nicely and let it come to boil.
Just after giving one boil
Discoloration started due to boiling for 3 min.
  • Switch off the gas.
  • Take out in a serving bowl and garnish with sprigs of fresh coriander.
Anar Kali
  • Make this dish fresh, keeping it in for long time will cause discoloration of the gravy to dull color.
Discoloration due to keeping for 2 hrs and then reheating
  •  Do not add too much chili powder as this preparation is meant to be slightly sweetish.
  • Add salt after all spices have been added.
  • Take out the juice of pomegranate while cooking the paneer with nuts and onion. This will make sure the color of juice to retain its wonderful pink color.
  • If boiled for too long discoloration will occur.
Discoloration started due to boiling for 3 min.
Suggested Variations:
  • Turmeric has got very high medicinal value that is why all Indian recipes will have turmeric as an ingredient,but if you prefer to avoid yellow ting to the gravy then turmeric  can be avoided, this will make sure the color of gravy remain pink.
  • Kasoori methi can be added instead of thyme.
  • Oregano / basil can be added instead of Thyme.
  • Cashew and raisins can also be added along with almonds and pistachios before paneer pieces are added.
  • Finely cut green chilies can be used for garnishing along with coriander sprigs.
  • If thyme or basil is added instead of kasoori methi then avoid coriander sprigs for garnishing,else the flavors will become too overpowering.

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