Winner dinners: two fast and easy Indian recipes

Sweet Chilli Friday cover high res

Front door closed, coat off, oven on… the weeknight race to rustle up a crowd-pleasing dinner can be a recipe for disaster. Enter the Peppercorn Passion ladies with a duo of dishes designed to help you keep your cool in the kitchen and spice up suppertime…


Who doesn’t love the delicious texture and rich creamy flavour of grilled paneer? And it’s even more irresistible when slathered with spices…

Paneer tikka Indian vegetarian recipe peppercorn passion Sweet Chilli Friday

Serves 4


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp water
  • ½ tbsp minced garlic
  • ½ tbsp minced ginger
  • 1½ level tbsps full-fat plain yogurt
  • 1 tbsp tandoori spice mix
  • salt
  • 225g paneer, cut into 12 even-sized pieces
  • 1 red pepper, deseeded and cut into 12 even-sized pieces
  • 1 red onion, peeled and cut into 12 even-sized pieces


  1. In a large bowl, mix together the olive oil, water, garlic, ginger, yogurt, tandoori spice mix and a pinch of salt.
  2. Stir in the paneer, red pepper and onion pieces, ensuring they are completely covered in the marinade. Leave to marinate for 8 hours, or overnight.
  3. Once the paneer is marinated, preheat the oven to 200°C.
  4. Lay the paneer, pepper and onion pieces on an oiled baking tray and bake for 15 – 20 minutes, turning once, until browned at the edges.
  5. Serve hot, stuffed into a pitta pocket, or with a salad of chopped lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber and fresh coriander.


Tempering this savoury potato and sweetcorn bake with sizzling spices adds an extra layer of flavour to this already-gorgeous Gujarati dish.

Peppercorn Passion ondhwo chickpea flour bake Gujarati jpg

Serves 6


  • 3 medium red-skinned potatoes
  • 3 medium white-skinned potatoes
  • splash of milk
  • 3 slices bread
  • 200g cooked sweetcorn kernels
  • ½ tsp ground turmeric
  • ¾ tsp red chilli powder
  • 1 tsp minced green chilli
  • 1 tsp minced ginger
  • pinch of sugar
  • ½ lemon or lime, juice only
  • handful of coriander, chopped
  • salt

For the tempering:

  • 1 tbsp rapeseed oil
  • ½ tsp mustard seeds
  • 2 small cinnamon sticks
  • a few cashews
  • a few fresh curry leaves, washed and dried

To finish:

  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 1 tbsp rapeseed oil


  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  2. In a large saucepan of boiling salted water, boil the potatoes until soft. Drain, then remove the skins. Transfer to a large bowl and mash thoroughly.
  3. Put a little milk in a separate bowl and soak the bread once slice at a time, gently squeezing out the excess.
  4. Add the soaked bread to the potatoes along with the sweetcorn, turmeric, chilli powder and fresh chilli, ginger, sugar, citrus juice and coriander and mix thoroughly. Season to taste and set aside.
  5. Meanwhile, heat a tablespoon of rapeseed oil in a small frying pan. When hot, add the mustard seeds and cook until they start to splutter slightly, then add the cinnamon sticks, cashews, and curry leaves.
  6. Cook for 1 minute, then remove from the heat and add the oil and spices to the mashed potato mixture, stirring it through.
  7. Transfer the mixture to an 8-inch baking dish, and spread out evenly.
  8. Sprinkle the bake with the sesame seeds, then warm through a tablespoon of rapeseed oil in a small frying pan and pour over the sesame seeds.
  9. Bake in the oven for 30 – 40 minutes, until the top has browned slightly.
  10. Remove from the oven and allow to cool a little, then cut into slices to serve.
  • Recipes from ‘Sweet Chilli Friday’, published by Meze Publishing, RRP £15
  • For more information and to order, click here
  • To read more about ‘Sweet Chilli Friday’, click here
  • To read an interview with the authors, click here
  • For three non-Indian recipes from the cookbook, click here

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