methi malai paneer recipe with step by step photos – sharing one more restaurant style delicious recipe of methi malai paneer. it is a creamy, mildly sweet gravy with hints of bitterness from fenugreek leaves.
methi or fresh fenugreek leaves is often cooked at home. usually i end up making the very simple and homely aloo methi recipe. rich dishes with methi like methi matar malai or methi paneer or methi malai paneer, i only cook on some weekends or when we want to have some good restaurant style food at home.
i usually avoid ordering food from restaurants or takeaways and try to cook restaurant-style recipes at home. since by now i have got enough experience in cooking, i do prepare a neat restaurant style food at home.
the recipe of this methi malai paneer is roughly adapted from the methi matar malai recipe i make. the recipe uses fresh fenugreek leaves and i do suggest to add them. but if you are not able to get them, then substitute with dry fenugreek leaves or kasuri methi (proportions mentioned in the recipe box below).
methi malai paneer literally translates to fenugreek cream cottage cheese/paneer. though, the english translation is too plain and does not do justice to the actual dish.
however, the hindi words methi malai paneer are apt for this dish. say methi and any indian will know what it tastes like. so is the case with malai and paneer. finally what one expects of this dish is what one gets. the gravy or curry is creamy, mild and lightly sweet. there is a hint of bitterness coming from the fenugreek leaves without getting overpowering. the soft paneer cubes bring a lot of texture to the otherwise smooth gravy.
the methi leaves that we get here, is not very bitter. so i just add them directly to the dish. but if you get very bitter methi leaves, then follow the tip mentioned below.
tip to reduce bitterness in fenugreek leaves:
chop the methi leaves. sprinkle some salt on them. mix well and allow the mixture to sit at room temperature for 15 to 20 minutes. then squeeze the methi leaves with your hands and then add in the recipe. this way much bitterness can be removed from methi leaves.
before you proceed with the recipe, pluck methi leaves. rinse them well in water and then finely chop them. usually i get one or two bunches from the market. pluck the leaves and keep them in an airtight box in the fridge. the leaves stay good for about 10 days. then i just rinse them, chop them and add to the dish. its more easy this way and takes less time to make any dish with methi.
methi malai paneer is good for kids who refuse to eat greens like methi. best served with flatbreads like naan, paratha or rotis. also goes very well with flavored rice like cumin rice, veg pulao or kashmiri rice.
methi malai paneer recipe video
how to make methi malai paneer
making masala paste
1. in a pan or kadai heat 1 tbsp oil.
2. add ½ tsp cumin seeds.
3. stir and saute till the cumin seeds change color and splutter.
4. now add 1.5 cups chopped onions.
5. stir very well and saute them on a low to medium flame.
6. saute till they become light brown.
7. then add 2 tsp chopped ginger, 1 tsp chopped garlic, 1 tsp chopped green chilies and 10 to 12 cashews (chopped). stir till the raw aroma of ginger and garlic goes away.
8. now add ¼ cup chopped tomatoes.
9. stir well.
10. saute the tomatoes till they soften.
11. when this onion-tomato mixture cools down, add it in a grinder jar.
12. add about ¼ to ⅓ cup water and grind to a smooth paste. keep aside.
making methi malai paneer
13. in the same pan, now add 2 tbsp oil. add 1 cup tightly packed finely chopped methi leaves. substitute 2 tbsp dry fenugreek leaves or kasoori methi for fresh ones. if using kasuri methi, then just saute them for a few seconds in the oil and proceed to step 15.
14. stir and saute the methi leaves till they wilt on a low to medium flame.
15. lower the flame and then add ¼ tsp turmeric powder, ½ tsp kashmiri red chili powder and ½ tsp coriander powder.
16. mix and stir the spice powders with the sauteed methi leaves.
17. now add the ground paste.
18. stir very well.
19. on a low flame saute the entire mixture for 7 to 8 minutes. keep on stirring so that the masala does not stick to the pan.
20. when you see some oil releasing from the sides, then add ¾ to 1 cup water.
21. stir again very well.
22. now add salt as per taste.
23. on a low to medium flame simmer the methi masala for 3 to 4 minutes.
24. now add ¼ cup cream. you can add low fat cream or whipping cream. stir the cream very well with the rest of the methi masala gravy.
25. add paneer cubes and ½ tsp garam masala powder.
26. now add ¼ to ½ tsp sugar. add sugar as per taste.
27. simmer on a low flame for 1 to 2 minutes till the paneer cubes are cooked.
28. serve methi malai paneer garnished with some grated paneer accompanied with tandoori rotis or naan or chapatis. this creamy gravy also goes well with cumin rice, saffron rice or kashmiri pulao.
few more curry recipes for you!
Methi Malai Paneer
for masala paste
- 2 medium onions Or 175 grams onions Or 1.5 cups chopped onions
- 1 small tomato Or 50 grams tomatoes Or ¼ cup chopped tomatoes
- 1 inch ginger, chopped or 2 teaspoons chopped ginger
- 5 to 6 small garlic cloves, chopped or 1 teaspoon chopped garlic
- 1 or 2 chopped green chilies Or 1 teaspoon chopped green chilies
- 10 to 12 cashews Or 2 tablespoon cashews - chopped
- ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1 tablespoon oil
other ingredients for methi malai paneer
- 200 to 250 grams paneer (cottage cheese) - cut in cubes or squares
- 1 cup tightly packed fresh methi leaves (fenugreek leaves) - about 40 grams methi leaves Or 2 tablespoon kasuri methi (dry fenugreek leaves)
- ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
- ½ teaspoon kashmiri red chili powder
- ½ teaspoon coriander powder
- ½ teaspoon garam masala powder
- ¾ to 1 cup water - i added 1 cup water
- ¼ cup fresh cream
- 2 tablespoon oil
- salt as required
- first pluck the methi leaves. then rinse them very well in water. chop them finely and keep aside.
making masala paste
- in a pan or kadai heat 1 tbsp oil. add 1/2 tsp cumin seeds.
- stir and saute till the cumin seeds change color and splutter.
- now add 1.5 cups chopped onions.
- stir very well and saute them on a low to medium flame till they become light brown.
- then add 2 tsp chopped ginger, 1 tsp chopped garlic, 1 tsp chopped green chilies and 10 to 12 cashews (chopped). stir till the raw aroma of ginger and garlic goes away.
- add 1/4 cup chopped tomatoes. stir well and saute the tomatoes till they soften.
- when this onion-tomato mixture cools down, add it in a grinder jar. add about 1/4 to 1/3 cup water and grind to a smooth paste. keep aside.
making methi malai paneer
- in the same pan, now add 2 tbsp oil.
- add 1 cup tightly packed finely chopped methi leaves. stir and saute the methi leaves till they wilt.
- next add 1/4 tsp turmeric powder, 1/2 tsp kashmiri red chili powder and 1/2 tsp coriander powder.
- mix and stir the spice powders with the sauteed methi leaves.
- now add the ground paste. stir very well.
- on a low flame saute the entire mixture for 7 to 8 minutes. keep on stirring so that the masala does not stick to the pan.
- when you see some oil releasing from the sides, then add 3/4 to 1 cup water.
- stir again very well. now add salt as per taste.
- on a low to medium flame simmer the methi masala for 3 to 4 minutes.
- now add 1/4 cup cream. you can add low fat cream or whipping cream.
- stir the cream very well with the rest of the methi masala gravy.
- add paneer cubes and 1/2 tsp garam masala powder.
- now add 1/4 to 1/2 tsp sugar. add sugar as required.
- simmer on a low flame for 1 to 2 minutes till the paneer cubes are cooked.
- serve methi malai paneer garnished with some grated paneer with tandoori rotis, naan or chapatis. this creamy gravy also goes well with jeera rice, saffron rice or kashmiri rice.