PANEER BUTTER MASALA
Who doesn’t love Paneer Butter Masala. This is a rhetorical question, of course because this is such a beloved dish for people all over the country. It is even gaining popularity outside the country now. Paneer Butter Masala is a rich and delicious paneer gravy that can be served as a side for various rice and bread items. This recipe makes the dish in a more restaurant style than a home cooked version.
Paneer Butter Masala
For Tomato-Onion Puree
- 3-4 Tomatoes Medium sized, diced
- 1 Onion Finely chopped
For Cashew Paste
- 1/2 cup Hot water
- 8-10 Cashew Nuts
- 2-3 tbsp Butter Salted or Unsalted
- 1 Bay Leaf
- 2 tsp Ginger-Garlic Paste Can also be substituted with crushed ginger-garlic.
- 1 inch Ginger Finely chopped
- 2-3 Green Chillies Adjust according to preferance
- 1 tsp Red Chilli Powder
- 1 1/2 cups Water
- 3-4 tbsp Fresh Cream Optional
- 1 tsp Garam Masala
- Kasuri Methi a pinch
- Salt to taste
For Cashew Paste
- Soak 8-10 cashews in hot water for 30 minutes.
- After the soaking time, grind it to a smooth paste. Add necessary amount of water.
For Tomato Puree
- Sauté the finely chopped onions in a kadai for 3-4 minutes until the raw smell leaves and the onions turn translucent.
- Add the tomatoes and sauté till the tomatoes become soft.
- In the same blender used for the cashew paste, take the sauted onions and tomatoes and grind to a smooth puree.
For the Gravy
- Dice the paneer and soak them in hot water. This softens the paneer.
- In a kadai, add 2-3tbsp butter and allow it to melt slightly. Add a bay leaf (tej pattha) and fry for 2-3 seconds until the butter/ghee becomes fragrant.
- Add ginger-garlic paste (or crushed ginger and garlic) and saute till the raw smell of the paste goes away.
- Add the tomato-onion puree and stir well. Let this cook for 3-4 minutes. Add red chilli powder and stir well.
- Stir the mixture well and it will start thickening and coming together. Now, add chopped ginger to this.
- Add slit green chillies and mix well.
- Add the cashew paste and stir well.
- To this, add 1 1/2 cups of water and let it boil. As the water comes to a boil, stir the mixture well and add required amount of salt.
- The gravy will start to thicken as the water is boiling, at this point, add fresh cream and stir it well into the gravy.
- Add the soaked paneer cubes and mix it well such that the gravy coats all the pieces.
- Lastly, add 1tsp garam masala and a pinch of kasuri methi. Stir well for 1-2 minutes.
- Paneer Butter Masala is now ready to be served.
- I served this with plain steamed basmati rice.
- Addition of Kasuri Methi gives the dish a wonderful smell that makes it feel like something straight out of a restaurant.
- If you don’t have cream, and if your gravy isn’t thickening as much as you’d prefer it to, add a little cornflour+water slurry or maida(all purpose flour)+water slurry.