Pesto Paneer Tikka Salad

I like to keep a jar of homemade pesto in my refrigerator. It comes handy to mix it in a salad and low carbs pasta preparation for busy weekday dinners. When it comes to dinner, I try to keep the glycemic index of the meal on a lower side. I enjoy preparing healthy salads with homemade dressings. I came up with this fusion salad recipe that tickles my taste buds, is nutritious, delicious, and healthy. It’s my signature recipe.

INGREDIENTS

Salad:

  • A bunch of romaine lettuce.
  • 1/2 cup sliced yellow/white onion.
  • 8-10 cherry tomatoes.
  • 2 tsp lemon juice.
  • One pinch of black pepper.
  • Two pinches of salt.

Pesto Paneer Tikka:

  • 1 and 1/2 cups of malai paneer.
  • 1/3rd cup of cilantro leaves.
  • 4 tbsp Greek yogurt.
    (I prefer Green Mountain creamery’s plain greek yogurt. You can use strained Indian yogurt too.)
  • 1/4th tsp salt.
  • 3 tbsp pesto sauce.
    (Click here for the Pesto sauce recipe that I made for this fusion recipe.)
  • Two cups diced colored bell peppers.
  • 1/2 cup diced red/yellow onion.

RECIPE

(Serves 2)

Pesto Paneer Tikka:

  • Add cilantro and pesto in a blender’s jar and grind it to a fine paste.
    (Generally, Pesto’s texture is coarse, finely blended paste works better for marination.
    Cilantro enhances the green color and adds a nice flavor.)
  • Combine yogurt, salt, and the pesto-cilantro paste in a bowl. Give it a nice whisk.
  • Next, add paneer in the bowl. Marinate the paneer till the cubes are well-coated. Cover and set it aside for 30 mins to an hour.
  • Skewer marinated paneer cubes alternating with onions and colored bell peppers. This should make about 4 skewers.
  • Preheat the oven at 400 degrees F.
  • If you’ve the cooling rack, place it over a roasting pan and set aside. Another option is to use a baking tray, cover it with the foil, and grease the foil with zero-calorie olive oil spray.
  • Place the skewers on a cooling rack or in the tray, bake for 12 minutes, turning once halfway.
  • Next, switch on the broiler (to get a grill effect). Broil for 2-3 minutes till the paneer has a slight char on the surface.
  • Take out the tray or a pan with the skewers.

Salad:

  • While the paneer and veggies are being grilled, chop lettuce, and thinly slice the onion.
  • In a salad bowl, arrange chopped lettuce, sliced onions, a lemon wedge, and cherry tomatoes, as shown in picture #4.
  • Next, transfer the skewers on the salad plate. Squeeze some lemon juice on the salad, season it with salt and pepper.
  • Remove grilled paneer and vegetables from the skewers, mix with the salad, give it a gentle toss, and dig-in.

I’ve tried another variation of this salad, Tandoori paneer tikka, lettuce, onion, and tomatoes with mint and yogurt dressing. The fusion combination was equally scrumptious. I’II share the recipe soon on my blog. Stay tuned!

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