Paneer Tikka Masala

If you like the restaurant style Paneer Tikka Masala, this is a very tasty homemade version,you'll forget the restaurant one!

for the paneer tikka:
250 grams paneer, cut into½ inch squares
1 medium green capsicum, diced
½ cup thick yogurt
1 lemon juice
1 tsp cumin seeds, 2-3 green cardamoms,1 strand of mace - ground into a fine powder.
½ tsp red chilli powder
¼ tsp turmeric powder
2 to 3 pinches of nutmeg powder
2 tbsp gram flour
¼ tsp red food colour
3 tsps of oil
salt to taste

For the gravy
2-3medium tomatoes, ground - which would yield approx 1 cup tomato puree
1 cup full fat yogurt - whisked well till smooth
¼ to ½ tsp red chilli powder
1 tsp coriander powder
¼ tsp turmeric powder
½ tsp garam masala powder
½ tsp of ginger-garlic paste
½ tsp kasuri methi or dry fenugreek leaves (optional)
2 to 3 tbsp cream
1 cup water
2 to 3 tbsp oil or 2 tbsp butter
a few coriander leaves for garnishing
salt as required
making the grilled paneer tikka:
1.     Whisk the yogurt till smooth. add all the spices, herbs, gram flour, lemon juice, salt mentioned above. mix well.
2.     Add the paneer cubes & capsicum, coat it well. Marinade for a minimum 1 hour in the refrigerator or overnight in the refrigerator.
3.     Thread the paneer cubes on wooden or metal skewers, you can use a charcoal grill( which gives a flame flavour) or you can put it under the electric grill.
4.     The paneer should be golden brown on all sides.
preparing the gravy

1.     puree the tomatoes and keep aside.
2.     whisk or beat the yogurt till smooth, keep aside.
3.     heat oil in a pan. Add the ginger-garlic paste and sauté  till there is no raw aroma.
4.     add the tomato puree and continue to sauté for 3-4 mins.
5.     add the turmeric powder, coriander powder, red chilli powder and garam masala powder. stir well.
6.     cook well till you see oil leaving the masala paste from all sides and the whole mixture starts getting together. This should take 10-15 mins on low flame.
7.     remove the pan from the fire, add yogurt and the leftover marination, stir well.
8.     return the pan on fire and add water and salt.
9.     stir well and simmer for 8-9 minutes on a low flame till the curry thickens a bit and you see fat or oil on the top.
10. add the grilled paneer tikka cubes & bell pepper to the gravy and simmer for a minute or two on low flame.
11. then add some crushed kasuri methi and cream. stir. switch off the fire and the paneer tikka masala ready to be served. garnish with chopped coriander leaves and  lightly spread cream in a thin line.
12. serve with naan, rotis or jeera rice.