Akbari Paneer is a Mughlai Delicacy – A very rich in taste delicacy made with the help of aromatic spices, nuts, butter and creamy – a dish true to it’s royal name! Worry not, I have given healthier option for this recipe so that you can also try it guilt-free. Very easy to prepare, this recipe is sure to bring wows from those who eat it.
Paneer – About 8-10 Oz., coarsely grated
Onion – 1, Medium sized, chopped
Ginger – 1/2 teaspoon, grated
Garlic – 1/2 teaspoon, finely chopped
Cashew nuts – 1/2 cup
Tomato Sauce – 1 can (may use 3 chopped tomatoes instead)
Evaporated Milk – 1 can (can use regular milk instead)
Butter/Oil – 1 1/2 tablespoon
Heavy Cream – 3/4 cup (can use whisked yogurt for a healthier version)
Honey – 1/2 – 1 tablespoon
Salt – to taste
Garam masala – 1 1/2 teaspoon
Red chili powder – 1/2 to 1 teaspoon
Kasuri Methi – 1 teaspoon
Lemon juice – 1 tablespoon, or to taste
Saffron strands – a few
Milk – 2 tablespoons
Orange food color (optional) – a small pinch
Whole Garam Masala – 1 bay leaf, 3 cloves, 1/2 inch piece of cinnamon stick, 2 Green cardamoms, 1 black big cardamom, 1 star anise [All of these ingredients are nice to have, but if you are missing any of these, no big deal]
- Coarsely grate paneer.
- Heat 2 tablespoons of milk, add saffron strands, keep it aside.
- Heat butter/oil. Add all the ingredients listed under whole garam masala, saute’ for a couple of minutes.
- Add chopped ginger, garlic, saute’. Add chopped onion. Saute’ for 5-7 minutes on medium heat.
- Add salt, garam masala, red chili powder and saute’ for a couple of minutes.
- Add the tomato sauce, some cashews (leaving some aside for later use). Saute’ for another 5 minutes. Turn off the heat.
- Once the gravy is slightly cooler, remove the whole garam masala as much as you can, keep it aside, and process the mixture in the food processor/mixture to make a homogeneous smooth gravy, using evaporated milk. Return it to the pan and add back the whole garam masala that you had earlier removed from gravy, add lemon juice. Turn on the heat again on medium flame.
- Add the coarsely grated paneer, honey, dried crushed kasuri methi, soaked saffron and let it cook for 5 minutes.
- Add the remaining chopped cashew nuts. Finish it by adding heavy cream. Give it a nice stir.
Serve it with Naan, Paratha, Roti, or Rice.