Shahi Paneer is probably the richest of all paneer dishes. “Shahi” – the word itself means “Royal” in Urdu. The royalty in this dish comes from adding cashew nuts and dried fenu greek leaves. The explosion of aroma in this dish cannot be found in other similar paneer dish like the famous makhani paneer or kadhai paneer.
If you are a vegetarian, this would be a dish to treat yourself with on a special occasion and if you are strictly a non-vegetarian it will certainly make you want to switch sides!!
Ingredients :- (serves 2)
- 3 tbsp butter
- 1 cup diced fresh paneer (cottage-cheese)
- 3 cardamom
- 1 red onion
- 2 tomatoes
- 1 tsp ginger (crushed)
- 1 tsp garlic (crushed)
- 50 gm cashews
- 1 tsp jeera powder (cumin)
- 1 tsp haldi powder (turmeric)
- A pinch of garam masala
- Salt according to taste
- ¾ cup of milk
- 1 tbsp tomato ketchup
- 1-2 tbsp of kasuri methi (dried fenugreek leaves)
- 1/2 cup water
- 2 tbsp coriander (chopped)
* Kasuri Methi – dark green dry leaves provides a strong lingering aroma & distinct flavor to curries.
- Put ginger, garlic and onions in a blender and blend for a few minutes. Remove and set aside.
- Bring tomatoes and cashew to a boil in a milk pan. Then drain. Save some of the water for later use.
- Puree the boiled tomatoes and cashew.
- In a frying pan, set over medium high, add butter.
- Crush the cardamom lightly just to open it enough for the fragrance to seep through. Add these to the hot pan.
- Quickly add in the onion, ginger & garlic mixture. Stir fry for a few minutes or until the onions have browned a bit.
- Pour in the tomato cashew puree and stir to mix all ingredients in the pan.
- Add in all the spices – haldi, jeera, garam masala & salt. Stir. Allow the spices to blend in naturally with the sauce. This takes about 4-5minutes.
- Once the oil separates from the mixture in the pan, add in kasuri methi. Stir well.
- Add water slowly while stirring. Cover lid for 2 minutes.
- Remove the lid and boil down most of the liquid.
- Add the fresh paneer carefully and mix slowly. (A lot of recipes available prefer to fry the paneer before adding but I like to use fresh ones. It absorbs the flavours of the curry easier and also is not too chewy for my little ones).
- Add chopped coriander and fresh milk just before serving (do not stir).
- Serve with plain rice or any form of Indian flat bread.
p.s. For adults, serve with some fresh green chillies on the side.