Paneer Makhani

Paneer Makhani myfavouritepastime.comMakhani is a Hindustani word meaning “with butter“. It is used in the names of several dishes from Punjabi cuisine. Paneer makhani is made from the white cheese paneer, and is also known as “paneer butter masala”.  I got the recipe from here: It’s so good, I make it at least once a week. How is summer? ours here is so hot, but I guess it’s better than those cold and grey and depressing winter days. I wish you a wonderful week!

Paneer Makhani myfavouritepastime.com

Paneer Makhani myfavouritepastime.com_9016Paste Ingredients

Paneer Makhani myfavouritepastime.com_9021Boil some water in a pot, add a of pinch salt, then add the paneer pieces and take them out within a minute.This will make the paneer very soft.Shallow fry the paneer in 1 tablespoon olive oil until lightly browned. Don’t fry them too much otherwise they will become hard. Set aside.

Paneer Makhani myfavouritepastime.com_9019To make onion and chilli paste: fry the onions and green chilli in the remaining olive oil for about seven minutes until onions are transparent. Add the grated ginger and cook for 1 minute. Remove with a slotted spoon and blend the mixture into a smooth paste. Set aside.

Paneer Makhani myfavouritepastime.com_9024In the same pan over medium heat, melt the butter or ghee,

Paneer Makhani myfavouritepastime.com_9026add the prepared onion paste and cook for a few minutes.

Paneer Makhani myfavouritepastime.comAdd the spices: red chilli powder or dried flakes, Hungarian paprika, turmeric powder and garam masala.

Paneer Makhani myfavouritepastime.comCook for about 5 minutes over low heat. If its too dry add 1-2 tablespoons water.

Paneer Makhani myfavouritepastime.comAdd the tomato puree and stir for 1 min, then add the water or broth and the ground cashew and bring to the boil, stirring. Simmer for a few minutes until thickened.

Paneer Makhani myfavouritepastime.comAdd the cream, season with the salt and sugar to your taste.

Paneer Makhani myfavouritepastime.comFinally add the fried paneer and peas (if using), bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer covered for 5-6 mins. Adjust seasoning, if necessary.

Paneer Makhani myfavouritepastime.comJust before serving add the crushed fenugreek leaves (kasuri methi) and mix well. (I wasn’t able to get this ingredient).

Paneer Makhani myfavouritepastime.com Serve it with naan or steamed Basmati rice.

Paneer Makhani myfavouritepastime.com

Paneer Makhani

Original Recipe 

Ingredients

  • 400g paneer, cubed
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons (60g, ¼ cup) butter or ghee

Paste Ingredients

  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 1 small green chilli pepper chopped (added very small yellow bell)
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped, fresh ginger

Spices

  • ½ teaspoon red chilli powder or dried chilli flakes
  • 1 teaspoon Hungarian paprika
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • ¼ teaspoon garam masala

Other ingredients

  • ¾ cup tomato puree or crushed tomato (use good quality Italian strained tomatoes)
  • 120ml (½ cup) water or vegetable broth (stock)
  • 1-2 tablespoons ground cashew nuts (optional)
  • 120ml (½ cup) 10% or 35% cream
  • 1-3 teaspoons sugar; and salt to taste
  • 1 cup frozen peas (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon fenugreek leaves (kasuri methi)

Instructions

  1. Boil some water in a pot, add pinch salt, add the paneer pieces and take them out within a minute.This will make the paneer very soft.
  2. Shallow fry the paneer in 1 tablespoon olive oil until lightly browned. Don’t fry them too much otherwise they will become hard. Set aside.
  3. To make onion and chilli paste: fry the onions and green chilli in the remaining olive oil for about seven minutes until onions are transparent. Add the grated ginger and cook for 1 minute. Remove with a slotted spoon and blend the mixture into a smooth paste. Set aside.
  4. In the same pan over medium heat, melt the butter or ghee, add the prepared onion paste and cook for a few minutes.
  5. Add the spices: red chilli powder or dried flakes, Hungarian paprika, ground coriander, turmeric powder and garam masala. Cook for about 5 minutes over low heat. If its too dry add 1-2 tablespoons water.
  6. Add the tomato puree and stir for 1 min, then add the water or broth and the ground cashew and bring to the boil, stirring. Simmer for a few minutes until thickened.
  7. Add the cream, season with the salt and sugar to your taste.
  8. Finally add the fried paneer and peas (if using), bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer covered for 5-6 mins. Adjust seasoning, if necessary.
  9. Just before serving add the crushed fenugreek leaves (kasuri methi) and mix well.
  10. Serve it with naan or steamed Basmati rice.

Points to Note

  1. You can add more half & half or fresh cream to have more gravy.

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38 thoughts on “Paneer Makhani

  1. I’ve just starting experimenting with Indian cuisine and initially thought this recipe was still a bit too much for my skill level. After reading it, though, and realizing that wasn’t tofu, I think I can do this! I’ve pinned it and will give it a whirl. Thanks, Liz.

    1. Hey John
      I’m so happy to see you after a long silence on both ends. Of course you can make this simple dish. No sweat at all. Thanks for pinning John. I wish you a very pleasant week!
      Liz

  2. I’ve never thought about a paneer curry! I’ve only seen it in with spinach or pea curry. This must be so fabulous I might have to go buy milk and make paneer! Thank you!

        1. Yes, Tofu is a good substitute but sometimes it has a smell that I don’t really like! And tofu is cheaper too!
          Liz

    1. Ha ha I just dumped some paneer in the trash can the other day, because I’d bought one too many. I understand what you mean completely. You should try the recipe, sometime. Have a pleasant weekend!
      Liz

  3. It looks and sounds so good! Have you made the paneer yourself Liz? I haven’t but I was watdpching the Spice Goddess tv show and she made it, looked very easy. My favourite thing about Indian cooking is that it is mainly vegetarian and a very healthy way of cooking. Unfortunately, sometimes the spices don’t agree with my stomach. I do enjoy the scents of the cooking spices in a hot pan! How have you been? Your kids will be out of school now so do you find life a little less busy or not?

    1. Hi Sandy,
      I made the paneer once and got hooked, and both my sons, really love it. NO LEFT OVERS!!!!!
      I have no problem whatsoever with spices. My pantry is full of all sorts of spices from turmeric to garam masala to mustard seeds. I love cooking with spices.
      I’m okay. No school right now but they are attending camps all over the place. It’s however less busy. Have a wonderful week. It’s so hot here, I don’t bother to go outside during the day.
      Liz

      1. While we yearn for sunshine but it’s rainy and cloudy and grey. Sigh. Funny how the weather is this year compared to last huh? I must try to make the paneer. I’m assuming you use whole milk. Anytime I’ve made rice pudding or bread pudding for instance, it just isn’t the same with skim, 1% or 2%! Needs the real deal. By the way, I think I may have mentioned to you that I am growing turmeric in a pot this year. I bought the corms from the health food store in town and the poor things started off poorly but with warmer weather they are beginning to come back nicely. Hope your weather cools down a wee bit and we’ll send you some of ours. Best to you Liz.

        1. Oh yes Sandy, today is nice and cool and breezy. I’m sitting by the French Doors enjoying fresh air… the air conditioner is off!
          Yes I remember you said, you’re growing turmeric and I was so envious. I’m glad to hear it’s doing well. So what do you plan to do with it? Harvest the corm and dry it?
          For the paneer I used cream. 35% is the best but sometimes I use 10%. I never use skim milk. I use 2% for my tea or cereal.
          Have a lovely, weekend Sandy
          Liz

        2. I’m just about to head out on a day trip with a friend who has not travelled at all on our part of the world. Such fun! Thanks for the info on paneer! I’m dying to try it. As for the turmeric, when it’s finished growing for the season, I will pull it and dry out the rhizomes or corms or ? And I will let you know how they have turned ot. I can send you one or two to grow yourself if you wish? Mine are in a pot as they are considered a sub tropical plant. Well, off I go on another adventure! Take care ?Liz, so enjoy chatting with you!

        3. I hope you had a great time with your guest. I look forward to hearing whether you got huge rhizomes or not. I would love to grow some. That would be great. I have had a busy week with stay-in guest but most of them are gone now. Thanks and have a very pleasant week! I love chatting with you, too!
          Liz

  4. Looks very tasty, can’t say I’ve had it…but I trust it is if it makes it on the weekly menu 🙂 Seattle is warming up, finally! Have a great week.

  5. Very interesting, Liz. I had never heard of paneer, but a quick look around the net showed me that I could probably make it myself fairly easily. I may give it a try. I have a round of Mexican cheese that is probably quite similar, so I may try your recipe using that first.

    Virtual hugs,

    Judie

    1. Hey how have you been? I’m glad to hear you found a Mexican sub. You can also use extra hard tofu for this recipe. I believe it will just work fine.
      I wish you a happy cooking.
      Virtual Hugs
      Liz

        1. I find tofu has that smell, that I can’t really describe. Paneer doesn’t, so I prefer paneer, always.
          Liz

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