Yesterday Little A chopped off her hair. Not all of it. Few strands. She took the pair of scissors from the kitchen drawer which she uses to cut paper. She said she wants to cut paper. But did she cut paper ? No. Instead she cut off some of her own hair.
I told her never to repeat the act again and at that she cried so much that Big Sis had to volunteer two dolls from her collection to get hair chopped off by Little A.
D, the Dad, says I am too lenient with the little one. Believe me I am not. I mean yes I have changed as a Mother since I have had Big Sis and I try to pick my battles or maybe I just give up on certain areas that can involve a lot of bawling from a 3 yr old but lenient I am not. It is the kid who is different. And she is not even that naughty. It is just that she is different from Big Sis who was more obedient and conforming. And I think in some areas I have changed for the better. Better for rowdy mankind.
Before I was this woman hyper about everything being in place, the cushion just so, the walls pristine and I wouldn't let friends put up their feet on my cream sofa even if the said feet was beautifully pedicured. Now, honestly, I do not care. My painted walls have scribbles in unseen corners and I just avert my eyes, the sofa is jumped on, the cushions never in place. The friends are surprised. The husband repeats the "lenient dialog" and then he says I have become the "Bhalo Kakima", the "good aunt" (or so they decided) in their neighborhood who would let them ransack the house. The "Baje Kakima" (bad aunt) no doubt had a prettier home, disciplined kids and an orderly life.
And then I make Paneer Korma. In blog language it was "a beautiful dish with soft pieces of paneer nestled in creamy yogurt sauce perfumed with mint and coriander and then garnished with purple hued fried onions". In my everyday language it was a darn simple dish to cook and really good to eat which Big Sis loved like she loves Paneer.
The dish was inspired by this dish by Sanjeev Kappor and my Madhur Jaffrey Chicken Korma. The fried onion was a nice touch. Do add them.
Paneer KormaChop about 200gm of Paneer in small cubes. I buy Nanak brand which is really soft. If yours is not like that try lightly frying and dunking in warm salted water.
Soak 2 tbsp of cashew or blanched almond in water to soften.
In a blender add
1/3 Cup of thick yogurt
2 tbsp cashew
3 hot green chili
Make a smooth paste adding water if necessary.
To this add 1 tsp of flour and mix well. The flour will prevent the yogurt from curdling if you live in that fear.
Heat Oil for cooking.
Fry 1 small onion chopped in thin slices with a sprinkle of sugar. The onion should turn a pretty purple-pink and become soft and translucent. Remove and keep aside.
Now temper the oil with the following whole garam masala
2 small green elaichi slightly bruised
a 2" thin stick of cinnamon
10 whole black peppercorns
When the spices pop add 1 tsp of ginger-garlic paste.
Saute for a minute and add the paneer pieces. Sprinkle some turmeric powder. Lightly saute till the paneer cubes turn light golden.
Next reduce the heat to low and add the yogurt mix that you had made earlier. At low heat cook for couple of minutes stirring in between.
Add about 1 cup of lukewarm water and mix well. Raise the heat.
Sprinkle around 1/4 tsp of dried mint, and 1 tbsp of chopped coriander leaves. Add salt and some sugar to taste.
Let the gravy come to a boil and then simmer till the gravy becomes thick. Now add the fried onions and cook for a minute.
Serve with Roti, Naan or a Pulao.