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Recipe Paner Makhanwala; one of my favorite Indian dishes

Paneer Makhanwala one of my favorite Indian dishes

I’m in India for more than two months now. To be precisely in Agonda; teaching anatomy, vinyasa flow, AcroYoga and Thai Yoga massage at Sampoorna Yoga and doing some work as a massage therapist for myself. Being here for such a long time I do find myself going to the same restaurants over and over and even eating the same dish a lot of times. One of my favorites is Paneer Makhanwala. I always eat it at Fatima’s Corner; across from the church.

Paneer Makhanwala is a curry with cottage cheese in a mild gravy of tomato and cashews. I normally it it with naan bread. The version they serve at Fatima’s Corner is nice, mild spicy. What I like about this dish at this restaurant it that it’s always freshly made and actually never tastes the same as the one I had before, because the amounts of herbs and veggies they use to make the curry is always a bit different.

Ingredients for the gravy of Paneer Makhanwala

  • 1 medium to large onion, 3/4 cup roughly chopped onions
  • 3 to 4 medium tomatoes, 1,5 cups roughly chopped tomatoes
  • 2 centimeters ginger root, chopped
  • 3 to 4 medium cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 2 single strands of mace/javitri (Indian herb)
  • 2 to 3 green cardamoms
  • 3 centimeters of cinnamon
  • 2 to 3 cloves
  • 15 cashews
  • 1 cup water

Ingredients for Paneer Makhanwala

  • 250 to 300 grams paneer/cottage cheese, cut into cubes
  • 1 to 1,5 table spoon red chili powder
  • 1/4 cup low fat cream
  • 1 Indian bay leaf
  • 1 green chili, slit
  • 1,5 cups water
  • 3/4 tablespoon dry methi leaves, crushed
  • 1/4 tablespoon garam masala
  • 3 tablespoons butter at room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon cream for garnishing
  • salt

How to prepare Paneer Makhanwala

  • Mix chopped onions, tomatoes, ginger, garlic, cashews, mace, cinnamon, cloves and cardamoms with 1 cup water
  • Cook till tomatoes and onions are soft. Let the mixture cool off.
  • Put this gravy with all other gravy ingredients in a blender and make a smooth paste out of it.
  • Heat butter in a pan. Add the bay leaf and saute for a few seconds. Add the gravy and stir. Add chili powder and saute this masala on a medium flame. Keep stirring till you see the butter leaving the sides. It will take about 25 minutes on a medium flame.
  • Add slit green chilies, salt and water. Stir and let cook for 3 minutes.
  • Add the paneer cubes and simmer for 2 mins.
  • Add the cream, kasuri methi and garam masala. Stir and switch off the flame.


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