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Paneer and Vegetable Cutlets with Spicy Yogurt and Tamarind Chutney

Inspired by the Indian chaat dish dahi vada, this healthy, no fry version with rich paneer and sweet and savory chutneys and yogurt is as filling as it is yummy!

Leftovers (if anything is left, that is!) can easily make a delicious lunch the next day!



  • 1 cup shredded paneer

  • 2 potatoes

  • 1 cup frozen peas

  • 1/2 medium cauliflower

  • 1 carrot

  • 10 french beans

  • 1 medium onion

  • 1 small green chili

  • 2 tbsp minced ginger

  • 2 tbsp chaat masala

  • 2 tbsp garam masala or chana masala

  • 2 tbsp coriander-cumin powder

  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro

  • 1 lemon

  • 2 tbsp cornmeal

  • 1 tbsp red chili powder

  • Salt to taste


  1. Cut half of the cauliflower into florets. Cut potatoes into 4 pieces. Chop the carrot into big pieces. Chop green beans. Shred the paneer. Finely chop the onion, green chili, and cilantro, and set aside.

  2. In a 6-quart pressure cooker or Instant Pot, add frozen peas, cauliflower florets, potatoes, and carrots. Make sure to add the peas first so that the water from the peas will build up the steam needed to pressure cook without adding water to the vegetables.

  3. Let the steam build and cook on high pressure for 4 minutes. Let it cool down. Open the cooker and let the vegetables cool. Peel off the potato skins. Mash all the vegetables.

  4. Add paneer, onions, cilantro, green chili, coriander-cumin powder, garam masala, and chaat masala to the vegetable mix. Squeeze lemon and add salt and red chili. Add cornmeal.

  5. Gently stir all the ingredients and shape the mixture into about 2-inch rounds.

  6. Heat the skillet on high heat and season with oil. Place the cutlets on the skillet and grill on medium-high heat for two minutes. Gently turn and let the other side crisp.

  7. Make all the cutlets and let them cool. Cutlets can be made a day in advance.

Tamarind and date chutney


  • 1/2 lb pitted dates

  • 2 cups water

  • 6 tbsp tamarind pulp

  • 1 tbsp red chili powder

  • 2 tbsp chaat masala

  • Salt to taste


  1. In one cup of water, boil and simmer the dates for 10 minutes. Let it cool.

  2. In a blender jar (we like the Blendtec twister jar) add all the ingredients.

  3. Blend on batter/sauce setting until the cycle is done, mixing occasionally if needed.

  4. Add water to the chutney to achieve your desired consistency!

Masala Yogurt


  • 32 oz plain whole milk yogurt

  • 2 tbsp cumin powder

  • 1 tbsp red chili powder

  • Salt to taste


  1. Mix together all the ingredients and whisk until the consistency is even.

Putting it all together

  1. Transfer the cutlets to a serving dish.

  2. Cover each cutlet completely with yogurt.

  3. Add 1/2 tsp of date-tamarind chutney to each cutlet.

  4. Sprinkle cumin powder and red chili powder. Garnish with cilantro and serve!

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