I used my Paneer with Spice I shared with you previously to make this delicious Paneer Makhani. I have tried many different variations for the sauce and most of it has turned out quite well. Today I wanted a sauce that’s wasn’t overly spiced, just light and creamy but still delicious enough to eat, the paneer was already spicy so this sauce worked perfectly. I think this recipe ticked all the right boxes.
I don’t understand many Indian languages, I am from a telegu speaking home so it’s the only Indian language I can understand well but any other Indian language is foreign to me so I had to quickly find out what the word Makhani means. It means “buttery”. From my little research I also discovered that this sauce originated in the 1950’s when Punjabis invented the sauce by mixing fresh butter into a tomato-based gravy. I bet the Punjabis didn’t think their invention was going to be as popular as it is today.
Curries can be cooked in advance and most often tastes even better. However, I do find that with paneer dishes it doesn’t really work that well. The paneer does absorb a lot of the sauce therefore if it does stand for a long time there won’t be much sauce when serving. Therefore if I am making a Paneer Makhani I cook the sauce ahead of time I do not add the paneer to the sauce. I fry the paneer during serving time and re-heat the sauce and add the paneer.
I love using freshly roasted spices in my cooking. I usually roast and grind my spices in a coffee grinder. The coffee grinder is perfect for small batches of spice. The store-bought ground spices doesn’t have much aroma and feels really stale and flavorless. Roasting and grinding your own spices may be a little bit of extra work but it is so worth the effort. Ever since I’ve started using freshly ground spices I’ve never looked back, I could never go back to buying store-bought ground spices.
This dish is rich and creamy and the paneer is soft and almost melts in your mouth. I loved this dish and can’t wait to try making it for some of my guests soon. If you want a more saucy dish you can double the recipe.
- paneer as per my previous recipe
- 2 large roma tomatoes blanched and blended
- 1 tbsp cooking oil or butter
- 1 onion finely chopped
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tspn garlic paste
- 1 tspn Kashmiri chilli powder
- 1/4 tspn turmeric
- 1/2 cup fresh cream
- sugar or honey only if sauce is too acidic
- fry paneer in a little butter or oil and set aside. Heat oil, add bay leaf and onion and saute until onion is translucent
- Add the garlic and fry for a minute and add spices. Add a few drops of water to prevent scorching. Allow the spices to cook for a minute
- Add tomatoes and season with salt. Cover and simmer until tomatoes are cooked. Oil will surface to the top once the sauce is cooked
- Add cream and heat through. Blend the sauce with a stick blender until smooth
- Add garam masala and paneer. Serve immediately