Malai kofta is one the most liked dishes from our cuisine. The soft and velvety koftas made of cottage cheese are simmered in rich and flavorful Indian spices to take an delightful make-over!
I don’t know how I missed this recipe in my paneer series! I was going through the folders where all my blog’s pictures are stored and there it struck me that this recipe was badly missed! This is such a popular recipe with Paneer that I don’t think my paneer series would be complete without this. But as they say – it’s better to late than never! Before this recipe (Malai Kofta) fades away from my memory, I must add it to my collection.
That reminds me – this is my 107th post! Really? I mean had I ever thought that I will continue my blog till this point? No! And that’s a very honest and clear ‘NO’! I had no idea what it takes to become a successful blogger when I started my journey and I am yet to learn the full course.
But at that time it was just a simple idea to share my simple cooking with the Internet users. I didn’t have the faintest idea how fun and enjoying this whole experience could be! Starting from deciding the dish, doing the preparation, cooking and presenting it nicely to make it as much appetizing as possible to readers and then photographing and selecting/editing the final pictures to publish! This is the whole end-to-end process of a single blog post and trust me every bit of it is utter fun!
Now let me come to this recipe of Malai Kofta. This is a very popular Indian curry which you will find at any restaurant in any corner of India. The preparation takes a bit of time, but totally rewarding at the end. There should be few delicacies best kept for holidays or special occasions and this one is definitely one of them. Don’t you think so?
Serves: 4 servings
For the kofta
- Paneer/cottage cheese – 200 gms, grated
- Potatoes – 2, medium, boiled, peeled and grated
- Red chili powder – ¼ tsp
- Cornflour – 1 tbsp
- Garam masala – ½ tsp
- Milk powder/khoya – ½ tbsp
- Salt to taste
For the gravy/curry
- Onion paste – ½ cup
- Tomato puree – 1 cup
- Cashew or almond paste – ¼ cup
- Red chili powder – ¾ tsp
- Ginger – 1 inch piece
- Garlic cloves – 4 to 5
- Garam masala – ¼ tsp
- Water – 2 cups or more as required
- Kasuri methi/dry fenugreek leaves – 1 tsp
- Sugar – 1 tsp
- Salt to taste
- Oil for deep frying the koftas
- Whole spices
- Bay leaf - 1
- Cinnamon – 1 inch piece
- Black cardamom – 1 or 2
- Green cardamom – 3 to 4
- Mace – a pinch
- Cloves – 3 to 4
- Mix all the ingredients mentioned under kofta, except oil, in a bowl. Mix them well and make a dough.
- Make medium sized balls from the dough and deep fry the koftas in medium hot oil till they are golden brown. Keep aside.
- Remove extra oil from the same pan leaving about 2 tablespoons of oil. Add all the whole spices and fry till the oil becomes fragrant.
- Now add the onion paste and sauté till it turns brown. Make a smooth paste of the ginger and garlic cloves and add it to the frying pan. Fry them till the raw smell evaporates.
- Add the tomato puree and sauté for 2-3 minutes on medium-high heat. Add the turmeric powder, red chili powder, garam masala powder and cashew or almond paste.
- Stir to mix well and saute till the oil starts to separate from the spice paste. Add water and stir.
- Cover and simmer the sauce to bring all the flavors together and the gravy begins to thicken. It takes approximately 11 to 12 minutes on low flame.
- Towards the end add crushed kasuri methi/dry fenugreek leaves, salt and sugar. Mix well and simmer for 1-2 minutes more.
- Tip the koftas into the curry if serving immediately or spoon some sauce on the serving plate and then place the koftas over it.
- Garnish the malai kofta with some cream, grated paneer and coriander leaves. Serve hot with rotis, naan or steamed basmati rice.