This vegan side is an inspiration from the typical and popular Indian Paneer Tikka Masala recipe. Paneer or the Indian Cottage Cheese is such a popular vegetarian ingredient that it’s probably the first protein providing item that strikes every possible mind when it comes to vegetarian eating. I am so glad that additional to plant based milks, Tofu has too gained a substantial ground in vegetarian/vegan eating, not to mention how much a healthier version it is by itself.
The ‘Tikka Masala’ concept as I understand, involves an aromatic marination of the key ingredients, tossing or shallow frying them and using them in a thick and lip-smacking gravy and it also means that I could not have waited any longer. 😀
- 1 packet of extra firm tofu – pressed, drained and cut into medium/large sized cubes
- 1 green bell pepper- diced
- 2 medium onion- 1 diced and the other chopped
- 2 medium tomatoes – pureed
- 2-3 green chilies split (optional)
- 1 cup soy curd
- 1 tsp ginger paste
- 1 tsp garlic paste
- 1 1/2 tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp coriander powder
- 1 tsp cumin powder
- 1 1/2 tsp red chili powder ( for color)
- 1 tsp garam masal powder
- 1/4 cup of cashew paste- (soak cashews in water for 30-45 mins and grind them in a blender to form a rich white paste)
- water 2 cups
- salt as per taste
- cooking oil
- chopped cilantro to garnish
- In a deep mixing bowl, add the curd, the red chili powder, coriander powder, cumin powder, 1 tsp of the turmeric powder, ginger -garlic paste and mix well to prepare a batter.
- To this batter add the the diced capsicum, the onions and the tofu cubes and coat them well leaving it for at least 30 min to marinate.
- In a shallow pan, add some oil and place the bell peppers, onions and the tofu cubes, frying them on both sides and then keep them aside.
- In a frying wok, add a tbsp of oil. To that add the chopped onions, some salt and saute until soft.
- Add the pureed tomatoes & the split green chilies to the saute onions and mix well.
- Add the cashew paste, remaining red chili powder,turmeric powder, garam masala powder and 1/2 -1 cup of water. Mix all well and allow it to simmer on medium heat for 10-15 minutes.
- After this add the kept aside fried tofu, bell pepper and onion cubes and the remaining batter if left to this gravy, some water and allow it to boil till the gravy begins to thicken. Check the seasoning to suit your taste of salt and you are done. 🙂
Adding freshly chopped cilantro enhances the taste of this simple yet rich Indian- Vegan version of the Tikka Masala recipe and it goes extremely well with white rice, pulao, Indian flat breads and so much more. 🙂