When it comes to choosing an Indian dish for a fancy gathering, Paneer tops the charts in the ingredient list. Its versatility makes it an obvious choice to make any recipe special. Just like these Paneer Lollipops, the perfect appetizers for a party. This time, I decided to try something new, so I paired it with Asparagus, and besides Indian flavors, I also threw in some Italian seasoning for a delicate flavor that gets stronger when the Lollipops are fried. Top them with your favorite serving sauce – I made one with some Yogurt blended with a bunch of chutneys and spices and drenched my Lollipops with this sauce before serving. Needless to say, they were the limelight of the party!
You can be creative and do a bunch of things with these Paneer Lollipops. Hide a piece of flavored Herb Cheese inside the lollipops for an added gooey flavor. Or tuck in some whole nuts like pecans or almonds for another variation. Also, if Asparagus is not in season, or is hard to find, then you can easily use Pretzel Sticks, or even Baby Corn to make the Lollipop handles.
Paneer & Asparagus Lollipops with Yogurt Sauce
Prep Time: 20 mins
Cook Time: 20 mins
For The Lollipops
2 large potatoes – boiled & mashed
2 cups paneer – grated
1 onion finely chopped
3-4 green chillies chopped finely
2-3 cloves of garlic – grated
1 tsp tandoori masala
2 tbsp coriander leaves – finely chopped
1/2 tbsp soy sauce
2 1/2 tbsp cornflour
salt to taste
1/4 cup plain flour/maida
fresh green asparagus sticks – to make drumsticks
oil for deep frying
For The Yogurt Sauce
1 cup fresh yogurt
4 tbsp water
1 tbsp Imli ki chutney (tamarind chutney)
1 tsp kasuri methi (dried fenugreek leaves)
salt – to taste
Make The Lollipops
Mix mashed potatoes,paneer,green chillies,onions ,coriander leaves, salt, garlic, cornflour and soy sauce all together and make a stiff dough ( if the dough is soft add more cornflour or paneer and make a tight dough) and set aside.
Lightly blanch the Asparagus spears, maybe around 1 minute in the microwave, and cut into 2-3 inch long pieces.
To make the Lollipops, take a small portion of the filling and roll it with your palms to form a ball. Now insert the Asparagus stick into one end, piercing it to reach almost the center of your ball. Then use youe hands to shape the ball into elongated cylinder, circling the asparagus drumstick.
Refrigerate the lollipops for 15 mins, while you start heating the oil to fry them.
Place the AP flour in a flat plate and roll the lollipops in it to evenly coat them. Now deep fry on medium flame till completely and evenly browned all over. Drain on paper towels and allow to cool.
Make The Yogurt Sauce
Mix the water with the yogurt and blend until nice and smooth. Add the Imli chutney and the kasuri methi. Season with very little salt, if you like. Then drizzle this onto the Lollipops right before serving, or serve it in a bowl on the side.
Serve these Paneer lollipops as appetizers with your choice of dipping sauce – my favorite is Imli ki Chutney or Tomato Ketchup, but a cheesy Queso or a spicy Cranberry Sauce would be a good option too!
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