This is one of my favorite paneer dishes. If I am in an Indian restaurant and unsure of what to order, this is the safest bet! It is actually a very simple recipe but since there is grinding involved I always hesitate to cook this at home. I am not sure what the authentic Punjabi recipe is like but this is how I make it at home. Love it paired with jeera or saffron rice or plain parathas. Mine always turns out to be a very thick and creamy gravy. You can adjust the consistency by altering the amount of milk you add - more will give you a thinner gravy and less will give you a thicker gravy. I also generally do not add any fresh cream but you can add that to get a more rich flavor. Also try to use fresh paneer if possible as that always tastes better, in my opinion. If not you can always use the frozen paneer.
Again this is a very basic recipe and paneer is a very versatile ingredient that can be altered to suit your taste buds - add the paneer fresh or grilled, skip the cashews to make it nut free and sub fresh cream instead or vice versa to avoid dairy. The possibilities are limitless! Do try it and feel free to experiment. Enjoy :)
Paneer Makhani - Recipe
- Paneer (fresh or frozen) - 200 g cubed
- Onion - 1 small chopped
- Tomatoes - 2 large chopped
- Green chili - 1 slit
- Ginger garlic paste - 1 tsp
- Tomato paste - 1 tsp
- Turmeric powder - 1/2 tsp
- Red chili powder - 1/2 tsp
- Salt to taste
- Cashews - a handful
- Kasoori methi or dried fenugreek leaves - 1 tbsp
- Sugar - 1/2 to 1 tsp or to taste
- Full fat milk - less than 1/4 cup or as required
- Whole garam masala - 1 bay leaf, 3 cloves, 1/2 inch cinnamon stick
- Oil - 1 tbsp
- Butter - 1 tbsp
- Heat oil in a non stick pan and add the whole garam masala. Fry for few seconds followed by the onion, ginger garlic paste and the green chili. Saute well till the onions begin to brown at the edges.
- Add the chopped tomatoes and salt. Fry at medium high heat till they turn mushy and the oil begins to to release. Make sure you stir at regular intervals.
- Once they reach this stage, add the tomato paste and fry for few more minutes. Then add the spice powders - turmeric and red chili and sauté well for few seconds. Switch off the flame and let the mixture cool down.
- Once cooled grind it to a smooth paste along with the cashews, sugar and the milk.
- Heat some butter and add this ground paste. Adjust the consistency by adding more or less milk. Add the kasoori methi. Add the paneer cubes. Cover and let it simmer on a low flame for few minutes. Serve hot with plain paratha or rice.