shahi paneer recipe with step by step photos – shahi paneer is one of the popular paneer (cottage cheese) recipe and also requested by many readers.
shahi means royal and as the name suggest this is a royal paneer dish. literally translated to royal cottage cheese. dry fruits, yogurt, saffron, whole spices and sometimes cream is added to make this dish royal and rich. few more similar mughlai recipes posted on the blog are paneer do pyaza, veg masala, navratan korma, mughlai veg biryani and shahi paneer korma recipe.
in this recipe, i have not used cream nor i have used butter or ghee. feel free to use cream or butter if you want them.
the shahi paneer gravy or sauce is onions-almonds-cashew-melon seeds based. so this is very rich with the dry fruits in there. plus there is also yogurt. the result is a creamy, aromatic, semi sweet gravy with soft paneer cubes.
i have not added tomatoes to this dish since i have used yogurt. but you can substitute yogurt with tomato puree in the same proportions as mentioned in the recipe and still make a delicious shahi paneer. if adding tomatoes, then do add cream as both tomatoes and cream really go well with each other.
note: vegans can make the same shahi paneer recipe with tofu and cashew yogurt. i won’t advise using soy or peanut yogurt for this dish as these will ruin the taste. if using cashew yogurt than you don’t need to add cashews while making the paste.
shahi paneer recipe below:
shahi paneer recipe - rich mughlai dish with cottage cheese.
- 200 grams paneer (cottage cheese)
- 1.5 cups strained stock (got from boiling the onions with dry fruits) + water OR 1.5 cups water
- ½ cup full fat fresh curd (yogurt or dahi) - whisked till smooth
- 1 teaspoon coriander powder (dhania powder)
- ½ teaspoon red chili powder (lal mirch powder)
- ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder (haldi)
- ¼ teaspoon garam masala powder
- ¼ teaspoon cardamom powder (elaichi powder)
- 1 or 2 tablespoon full fat cream OR 70-80% fat cream (amul cream which is available in india can also be used), optional
- a pinch of saffron (kesar) - crushed
- 1 or 2 drops kewra essence (vetiver) - optional
- salt and sugar as required
- 1 medium sized onion - roughly chopped
- 2 tablespoon chopped cashews (kaju)
- 1 tablespoon almonds (badam)
- 1 tablespoon magaz or melon seeds without the skin
- 3 to 4 garlic - chopped (lahsun)
- 1 inch ginger - chopped (adrak)
- 1 tej patta (indian bay leaf)
- 2 to 3 cloves (lavang)
- 2 to 3 green cardamom (hari elaichi or choti elaichi)
- 1 to 2 black cardamom (badi elaichi)
- 1 inch cinnamon (dalchini)
- ½ teaspoon shah jeera (caraway seeds)
- 2 to 3 tablespoon oil or ghee or butter
boil onions, cashews, almonds, magaz, ginger and garlic in 1.5 cups water for 8-10 minutes till the onions become soft.
strain the stock and keep aside.
make a paste of the cooked onions, ginger, garlic along with the dry fruits adding 1 or 2 tsp of the strained water.
fry all the whole garam masala or whole spices mentioned in the above list till they release their aroma in the oil.
add the ground onion-dry fruits paste and saute till the oil starts to leave the sides of the paste.
add the dry spice powders and stir.
now add the whisked yogurt, stock+water, salt and sugar.
stir well and simmer for 10-12 minutes or till the gravy thickens slightly on a low flame.
if using cream, then whisk the cream till smooth and keep aside.
add the cardamom powder and crushed saffron.
stir and add the cubed paneer. if adding cream, you can add the cream with the paneer.
simmer for 1-2 minutes till the paneer is cooked.
add the kewra (pandan) essence and stir - optional step
garnish shahi paneer with some coriander leaves and serve the shahi paneer with jeera rice or rotis, naan or phulkas.
lets start step by step shahi paneer recipe:
1. cook onions, cashews, almonds, magaz/melon seeds, ginger and garlic in 1.5 cups water for 8-10 minutes.
2. simmer till the onions become soft. strain the stock and keep aside.
3. make a paste of the cooked onions, ginger, garlic and dry fruits, adding 1 or 2 tsp of the strained water.
4. fry all the whole garam masala till they release their aroma in the oil.
5. add the ground onion-dry fruits paste and saute till the oil starts to leave the sides of the paste. add the dry spice powders.
6. stir well.
7. now add the whisked yogurt, the strained stock+water, salt and sugar.stir well and simmer for 10-12 minutes on a low flame or till the gravy thickens slightly.
8. add the cardamom powder and crushed saffron.
9. stir and add the paneer cubes. if adding cream, you can add the cream with the paneer. simmer for 1-2 minutes till the paneer is cooked. add the kewra (pandan) essence and stir (optional step).