Paneer do pyaza recipe (or do piaza) - a Mughlai dish gets a North Indian twist by adding tomatoes to make it restaurant style. Here soft paneer cubes and sauteed onions are coated with semi-dry gravy. It tastes so delicious that you want to make it again and again!
What does do pyaza means?
Basically the do pyaza dishes are made with meat, but in modern days you will find many vegetarian options like paneer do pyaza, bhindi do pyaza, mushroom do pyaza, etc. During my research for this dish, I came across different perceptions regarding the meaning of do payza or do piaza. Don’t know which one is right, but all seems to make sense.
- Originally the dish is created by Mughal emperor Akbar Mullah Do Piaza by accidentally adding a large amount of onions to a dish. Hence the dish is named after him.
- Some say ‘do’=two and pyaza=’onion’. The dish is made with twice the amount of onions vs another main ingredient. In this case paneer.
- Some say the onions are added at two different stages on cooking. First, sliced onions are caramelized and cooked with tomatoes to make the thick gravy. Second, large cubed onions are cooked till soft yet crunchy and added at the last to keep that crunch intact.
Originally this is Mughlai dish where gravy is rich, creamy and no tomatoes are added. Instead, it has yogurt in the gravy. It makes white gravy like Mughlai shahi paneer. But this restaurant style paneer do pyaza has tomatoes in the gravy. Because it is the Punjabi style adapted from Mughlai cuisine.
Step By Step Photo Instructions:
1). Heat 2 teaspoons of oil in a pan on medium heat. Once hot add 1 ¼ cups cubed onion.
2) Continue cooking until they get translucent or light pink. We do not want to cook all the way through, keep it little crunchy. Remove it to another plate and keep it aside till needed.
3) Now heat remaining 2 teaspoons of oil in the same pan on medium heat. Once hot add cumin seeds. Let them sizzle. Add cardamoms and sauté for 30 seconds.
4) Then add 1 cup of sliced onion and mix.
5) Let it cook till it gets soft, light brown in color.
6) Then add ginger paste and garlic paste.
7) Mix and let it cook for a minute or till the raw smell of ginger garlic goes away.
8) Then add chopped and pureed tomatoes. Mix well.
9) Add salt and spices (turmeric powder, red chili powder, coriander powder, cumin powder, kasuri methi).
10) Mix well and continue cooking.
11) Let it cook till all the moisture is evaporated and oil starts to leaves from the sides.
12) Then add garam masala and mix well.
13) Add paneer and cooked onions.
14) Mix it very gently so paneer cubes do not break.
15) Add a ½ cup of water and simmer for 2 minutes.
16) Add cream or malai.
17) Mix it and let it simmer for 2 minutes. Turn off the stove.
Serving suggestion: Serve this paneer do pyaza with roti (phulka) or paratha or naan. You can serve dal, rice on the side to complete the meal. Also, you can serve onion lachha and salted lassi on the side to complement the meal.
Did you try this paneer do pyaza recipe? I’d love to hear about it! Leave a review in the comment section below.
Paneer Do Pyaza
- 4 oz or 115 grams Paneer cut into cubes
- 2 teaspoons + 1 tablespoon Oil
- 1 medium or 1 ¼ cups Red onion cut into big chunks and separated
- 1 medium or 1 cup Red onion sliced
- 1 teaspoon Cumin seeds
- 2 Green cardamoms
- 1 teaspoon Ginger paste or freshly grated or crushed
- 1 teaspoon Garlic paste or freshly grated
- 1 medium or ¾ cup Tomato chopped
- 2 medium or 1 ¼ cups Tomato pureed
- ¼ teaspoon Turmeric powder
- 1 teaspoon Coriander powder
- ½ teaspoon Cumin powder
- 1 teaspoon Red chili powder
- 1 teaspoon Kasoori methi (Dried fenugreek leaves)
- Salt to taste
- ½ teaspoon Garam masala
- ½ cup Water
- 1 tablespoon Heavy whipping cream or fresh cream or malai
- Heat 2 teaspoons of oil in a pan on medium heat. Once hot add 1 ¼ cups cubed onion and let it cook till it gets translucent or light pink. Keep them little crunchy, do not overcook.
- Remove it to another plate and keep it aside till needed.
- Now heat remaining 2 teaspoons of oil in the same pan on medium heat.
- Once hot add cumin seeds. Let them sizzle. Add cardamoms and sauté for 30 seconds.
- Then add 1 cup of sliced onion and mix. Let it cook till it gets soft, translucent.
- Then add ginger paste and garlic paste. Mix and let it cook for a minute
- Then add chopped and pureed tomatoes.
- Add salt and spice powders. Mix well.
- Let it cook till all the moisture is evaporated and oil starts to leaves from the sides.
- Then add garam masala and mix well.
- Add paneer and cooked onions. Mix it very gently so paneer cubes do not break.
- Add a ½ cup of water and heavy cream.
- Mix it and let it simmer for 3-4 minutes.
- Turn off the stove, paneer do pyaza is ready to serve.