Malai kofta is rich creamy curry usually enjoyed with nan or chapathi . It is a delicious Mughlai dish, which pose a real challenge to my cooking skills. It is also one of the essential in the Indian restaurant menu outside the Indian subcontinent. My hubby loves most of the north Indian dishe and he can live with chapthi three times a day. While growing up I haven’t tasted any north Indian dishes as a pucca south Indian. Rasam and sambar were my staple diet along with rice. After leaving the India, I started tasting north Indian dishes as all the restaurant outside india caters a mix of pubjabi and mughal dishes than the dishes from south.
In modern day India, Mughal influence in cooking is strongly felt in New Delhi and Lucknow in North and in Hyderabad in South. Cuisine of Delhi and Lucknow remain slightly closer to the Persian counterparts with the addition of cumin, coriander, turmeric, cardamom, cinnamon and ground chilies typical of the North. Where as in Hyderabad mustard seeds, curry leaves, hot chilies, tamarind and coconut milk infuse the dishes.
Malai kofta is usually made with minced meat such as lamb; while the vegetarian version usually includes potato, paneer and other vegetables. I had some paneer left after making matter paneer, so I decide to use it to make to Paneer -malai kofta curry. After consulting with my Google friend I came up with this recipe.
Grated Paneer: 2 cup
Grated Carrot: 1no
Potato: 1 no (Boiled and cooked)
Gram masala: 1 teaspoon
Chili powder: 1 teaspoon
Cashew: 10 no
Raisin: 25 no
Whole wheat flour: 3 tablespoon
Salt: 1/4 teaspoon or to taste
Oil for frying
Red Onion: 1 no
Tomato: 4 nos
Ginger: 1 inch
Garlic cloves: 3no
Cashews: 11 no
Cumin seeds: 1 teaspoon
Fennel seeds: ½ teaspoon
Turmeric powder: ¼ teaspoon
Red chili powder: 1 teaspoon
Coriander powder: 1 teaspoon
Gram masala powder: 1 teaspoon
Salt: ½ teaspoon or to taste
Olive oil: 3 teaspoon
Coconut milk/ Low fat milk/cream: ¼ cup
Coriander leaves: 2 tablespoon (Chopped,) for garnish.
How I made
Keep aside 2 tablespoon of grated paneer for garnish. In a food processor, or blender pulse or blend rest of grated paneer, carrots, cooked potato along with turmeric powder, salt, chili powder, cashews and raisins until everything combined well and forms a dough. Knead this dough along with whole wheat flour for 2 minutes to form soft dough. Pinched out small proportions dough and shape them into small golf sized balls and keep aside.
Heat oil in a thick bottomed pan, when it is smoking hot, put the kofta ball 3-4 at times and fries them in medium flame until they are golden brown. Drain fried kofta in a paper towel to remove extra oil and keep aside.
Heat 2 teaspoon of oil in a sauce pan, add cumin and fennel seeds when it starts splutters add onions, ginger, garlic fry them till onions become translucent or change color and add chopped tomatoes to this mixture and cook till they become tender and soft. Switch off the flame and let it cool for 5 minutes.
Grind the onion-tomato-ginger garlic mixture along with cashews to thick paste adding less amount of water.
Heat the rest of oil in a pan and add the ground paste of onion-tomato-cashew –ginger-garlic. Cook the gravy with turmeric, garam masala, chili, coriander powder and salt for 5 minutes. Now add coconut milk/milk/cream and simmer for another 3 minutes or until it reaches desired consistency. Switch of the flame.
When you are ready to serve add kofta in sauce and garnish with chopped coriander and grated paneer.
Preparation time: 45 minutes
Yield: 25 Kofta
Will you make it again: Yes I will
Notes: Make sure oil is really hot while putting the kofta for frying. Reduce the flame cook it medium flame until they are golden color