Shahi Paneer Recipe:
Delicious creamy and mildly sweet gravy with soft cottage cheese, for all special occasions.
The name ‘Shahi’ (that’s translates to ‘royal’ in English) itself suggest that this recipe has to be an exotic one, and that is exactly what it is. A delicate cashew nut and cream gravy with soft and fresh cottage cheese, with a hint of Indian spices and a mild sweetness makes it a perfect recipe for celebrations. The Shahi Paneer recipe I am sharing had been transferred to my mom by my grandma and has been adapted a little to suit our taste buds over the years.
Now by adaptation I do not mean we have altered the sheer identity of the shahi paneer recipe, all the traditional flavours have been kept strongly intact except the sweetness that has been cut down by infusing a little extra chilli (a red whole chilli that you’ll see) to the otherwise really sweet gravy. A very sweet gravy doesn’t really work for us but in case you like it, just skip the whole red chilli part and you’ll get the real Shahi recipe to follow. Read on to learn how to make shahi paneer in step by step recipe below:
Ingredients (Serves 2):
- 200 gms Paneer (Cottage Cheese), cut into chunky cubes
- 14-15 cashew nuts, made into a paste with 2 tbsp milk
- 2 small onions, quartered
- 3/4th tsp garlic paste
- ½ tsp ginger paste
- 2 green chillies, slit lengthwise
- 2-3 pinch of saffron strands (depending on the quality of the saffron you use, to get a mild colour)
- 2 cloves
- 1 green cardamom
- 1 small, less than ½ inch cinnamon stick
- 2 small bay leaf or 1 large one
- 4-5 pepper corns
- 1 whole red chilli
- 1 tbsp ghee, clarified butter
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- 2 tbsp thick fresh cream
- 2 tbsp fresh curd
- Salt to taste
- A few cashews and raisins to garnish
- Boil the onions with ½ cup water until soft. Drain and allow cooling and then make it into a smooth paste.
- Heat the oil and ghee in an Indian wok (Kadhai) and add the bay leaves, peppercorns, cloves, cardamom, cinnamon, whole red chilli and fry till fragrant.
- Then add the onion paste and green chillies and lower the flame and fry for 2-3 minutes, do not let it turn golden for you don’t need the colour. Then add the ginger and garlic paste and fry on low flame till the oil starts separating.
- Tip in the cashew paste and fry for another minute and then add curd and fry for 30 secs and add ½ cup of water. Add salt to taste and stir in the saffron strands and one the gravy just bubbles stir in the entire cream and add the cubes of cottage cheese and turn off the flame. Coat the cubes wit gravy and cover with a lid, leave on for 5 minutes to let the saffron to infuse and the gravy to infuse with the cottage cheese cubes. Dress with a few cashews and raisins and serve warm with Parantha or Nan (Indian breads)
Dos and Don’ts:
- Do not stir the gravy too much after adding the cottage cheese, as it may just break down.
- Do not allow the spices to colour or go golden while frying, so keep the flame between low and medium always.
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