Paneer Makhanwala

Paneer Makhanwala

Paneer makhanwala is one of the most exotic north indian curries. It is my personal favorite since this curry is packed with flavors, is mildly spicy and extremely buttery (I mean it is called Makhanwala afterall). Moreover, it does require much pre-preparation unlike other north indian curries that generally require marination.

I know there are many paneer makhanwala recipes available on the internet, but this is my favorite for a legit reason. It’s my husband’s recipe! And yes you guessed it right he makes it and I get to eat it without doing anything. But that’s not the only reason why I love this recipe. I genuinely think it tastes utterly delicious and scrumptious and restaurant-like. Also as far as I know him, he likes to keep it simple while cooking; so this recipe is fuss free (again rare for a north indian curry).

Since this is a heavy curry, we eat it for dinner or weekend lunch. We prefer eating it with parathas or jeera rice but you can eat with naans, roti/phulka, plain/jeera rice, endless choices. You can use the leftovers to make kathi rolls or naanizza. Highly recommend you to try this recipe. It is fuss free and absolutely delicious. So make it for either friends, family, someone special or just treat yourself.

Serves 4 | Prep time: 10-15 minutes | Cooking Time: 40-45 minutes

Ingredients:

  • ½ tbsp jeera (cumin seeds)
  • 2-3 whole elaichi (cardamom pods)
  • ½ inch cinnamon stick
  • 400 gms diced paneer cubes
  • 2 medium size onions – roughly chopped
  • 4-5 tomatoes – roughly chopped
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1 tbsp ghee
  • 2 green chillies slits (optional)
  • 1 tbsp ginger garlic paste
  • 12-14 raw cashews
  • ½ tbsp amchur powder (dry mango powder)
  • ½ tsp turmeric powder
  • ½ tsp red chilli powder
  • ½ tsp cumin-coriander powder
  • ½ tsp garam masala
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste (optional but gives great color to the gravy)
  • 1 tbsp tomato ketchup
  • 11 tbsp sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tsp kasuri methi (dry fenugreek leaves)
  • ⅓ cup heavy cream
  • 4 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 tbsp kashmiri lal mirch powder
  • Salt as per taste
  • pinch of black pepper powder
  • pinch of chaat masala

Steps:

  1. In a saucepan, heat oil and ghee. Add cumin seeds (jeera), whole cardamom and cinnamon stick.
  2. Once the cumin seeds temper, add onions. After a minute, add ginger garlic paste and chillies (generally this curry is sweet in taste, but a little spice does not hurt?!).
  3. Once onions turn translucent, add tomatoes and some salt.
  4. Mix everything well, close the lid and cook for 3-4 minutes on medium heat.
  5. After 3-4 minutes, add cashews, spices (turmeric powder, red chilli powder, cumin-coriander powder, garam masala, amchur) and some water. Mix everything well.
  6. Now add tomato paste, ketchup, crushed kasuri methi and 1 tbsp of butter (butter makes everything better).
  7. Mix everything properly, cover and let it simmer for 5 minutes on medium heat.
  8. After 5 minutes, add ½ cup water along with ½ tbsp sugar. Again mix, cover and let it cook for another 5-10 minutes.
  9. Once everything is cooked, turn off the heat and let it cool down.
  10. On cooling, take the mix in a blender and blend everything to smooth curry paste.
  11. In the same sauce pan, add 2 tbsp butter and 1 tbsp kashmiri lal mirch powder (this will give color to our curry) and the blended curry paste.
  12. Add remaining water (or per the consistency needed), cream and mix everything well. Cook for about 10 min on medium heat.
  13. Finally add diced paneer cubes and cook for another 10-15 minutes.
  14. Top it off with a pinch of garam masala, chaat masala, black pepper powder and 1 tbsp of butter again (it is makhanwala after all!).
  15. Garnish with fresh finely chopped cilantro and serve with naan/phulka rotis, jeera/plain rice.

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