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.
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.
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).
i have made a video of shahi paneer recipe – step by step pics with captions. so the step by step process can also be seen in the video. there is no voice over as its raining so heavily and there will be a strong background noise. hence avoided the voice recording.
shahi paneer recipe video:
shahi paneer recipe details below:
- 200 gms 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 yogurt/curd/dahi, whisked till smooth
- 1 or 2 tbsp full fat or 70-80% fat cream (optional) (amul cream which is available in india, can also be used)
- 1 tsp coriander powder/dhania powder
- ½ tsp red chili powder (lal mirch powder)
- ¼ tsp turmeric powder (haldi)
- ¼ tsp garam masala powder
- ¼ tsp cardamom powder (elaichi powder)
- a pinch of saffron/kesar, crushed
- kewra essence/vetiver, 1 or 2 drops, optional
- salt and sugar as required
- 1 medium sized onion, roughly chopped
- 2 tbsp chopped cashews (kaju)
- 1 tbsp almonds (badam)
- 1 tbsp magaz or melon seeds without the skin
- 3-4 garlic/lahsun, chopped
- 1 inch ginger/adrak, chopped
- 1 bay leaf (tej patta)
- 2-3 cloves (laung)
- 2-3 green cardamom (hari elaichi or choti elaichi)
- 1-2 black cardamom (badi elaichi)
- 1 inch cinnamon (dal chini)
- ½ tsp shah jeera/caraway seeds
- 2-3 tbsp 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.