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Monday, 28 August 2017

Malai Kofta Recipe

Malai Kofta is a creamy rich gravy dish from North Indian cuisine. Cottage cheese and potato balls stuffed with dry fruits are prepared and fried ,which are called kofta. A gravy is prepared using onion tomato as a base. Cream and cashew nuts add in to the richness of the curry. Delicious kofta are added to the gravy while serving. Kofta can also be served as starters and they just melt-in-the-mouth. Malai kofta dish is heavy in calories and is therefore made on special occasions and festivals. The gravy is aromatic ,mildly spicy and sweet in taste and has a silky-smooth texture. The curry gets its flavors from the whole spices used in it. It tastes great with naan, chapatti or paratha or can be served with steamed rice or mild pulao.

Usually the kofta are deep fried, but i have shallow fried them. The recipe calls for adding blanched cashew nuts paste to the curry. I have used blanched almonds and cashews in equal quantities to make the paste.

Submitting this recipe to #107th #FoodieMondayBlogHop where the theme for this week is #PartyDishes. Do check out my fellow bloggers post as well for some wonderful ideas and dishes on this theme. 

Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking Time: 30 minutes
Servings 3-4

For Kofta:
         1 cup potato (boiled, peeled and mashed)
         ½ cup crumbled cottage cheese /paneer
         2 tablespoon chopped nuts (I have used cashew nuts and almonds)
         1.5 tablespoon cornflour
         1 tablespoon raisins
         1 tablespoon milk powder
         ½ teaspoon black pepper powder
         Salt to taste
         Oil for shallow frying the kofta.

For Curry:
         3 tomatoes
         1 large onion
         ½ cup fresh cream (i have used homemade malai)
         3 tablespoon clarified butter / ghee
         2 green chilies
         3-4 cloves of garlic
         ½ inch ginger piece
         5 almonds
         5 cashew nuts
         2 green cardamom
         1 bay leaf
         1-inch cinnamon stick
         1 teaspoon red chili powder
         1 teaspoon coriander powder
         ½ teaspoon garam masala
         1 teaspoon sugar
         1/2 teaspoon crushed dried fenugreek leaves/kasuri methi
         Salt to taste

1.     In a mixing bowl take crumbled cottage cheese, grated or mashed boiled potatoes, black pepper powder, salt and cornflour. Mix well.

2.     In another bowl take chopped nuts and raisins and add milk powder to it. This this our stuffing for the kofta.

3.     Divide the paneer potato mixture into equal parts. Take a part and roll it between the pals into ball shape. Slightly flatten it and press with the finger in the center. Place little dry fruit stuffing from (step 2) on to it and close it and roll again into ball shape. Our kofta is ready to be fried. Prepare all the kofta similarly and arrange on a plate. I could make 12 small kofta from the above mentioned quantity. Place the kofta plate in the refrigerator for 10-15 minutes before frying them.

4.     Heat oil in a deep wok and shallow or deep fry the kofta on low to medium heat until they are golden brown from all sides. Fry the kofta in small batches and remove them with a slotted spatula on a tissue paper.

5.     For the gravy, chop the tomatoes roughly and puree them in a grinder jar. Blanch the almonds and cashew nuts by placing them in a bowl of water. Heat the bowl in a microwave for 3-4 minutes. Discard the water, peel the almonds and keep them with cashews aside until use.  Also make a paste of green chilies, garlic and ginger. In a pan heat 2 teaspoon ghee and finely chopped onions to it.  Saute the onions until they turn translucent. Transfer the fried onions in a grinder jar. Add blanched cashew nuts and almonds to the onion and make a smooth paste of it. You may use little water while grinding.

6.     In the same pan heat remaining ghee. Add bay leaf , green cardamom and cinnamon stick. fry for few seconds.  Now add green chili , garlic ginger paste and stir fry until the raw smell goes.

7.     Add the tomato puree and mix well. Stir fry the puree on a low to medium flame until it leaves the sides of the pan.

8.     Now add the onion cashew nut paste and blend well. Cook the mixture for 2-3 minutes.

9.     Add the spice powders ( red chili powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder, garam masala ) , salt and sugar and mix well. 

10. Add fresh cream to the gravy and stir well.

11.     Add 1/2 cup of water or milk to the gravy and adjust the desired consistency. Allow the curry to boil once. Put off the flame. Lastly add crushed kasuri methi . Flavorful gravy is ready.

12.     To serve place the kofta in a serving dish and add ready gravy to it. Serve immediately with chapati or jeera rice.

         Do not soak the kofta into the gravy for long, as the kofta are soft and will become soggy if done so. Add the kofta to the gravy just before serving.
         Ideally the kofta are deep fried but i have shallow fried them. Do not over crowd the kofta while frying. Fry them in a low to medium flame so that they cook well from inside without getting burnt.
         Cornflour acts as a binder in the kofta. You may use maida or bread crumbs instead. But do nit skip the binder as the koft may split inside the oil while frying. You may do a check test by adding little piece of kofta into the hot oil. if it does not break , it is perfect, but if the kofta break, add more binder and fry them.
         If you do not have time and patience to individually stuff each kofta with dry fruits mixture, you may add the resins, chopped nuts and milk powder to the kofta mixture and simply make round shape kofta.


  1. Rich and flavourful. Best kind of party dish!

  2. So, so yummy! Love the color!

  3. Malai kofta looks lip-smacking Poonam. Awesome share.

  4. what a color !!! loved this Poonam 👌👌

  5. Beautiful silky delicious gravy!

  6. I love malai kofta. Yours looks so so tempting. I like your idea of stuffing the kofta with dry fruit.

    1. Yes di stuffing the kofta with dry fruits gives a crunch and bite to the other wise soft kofta.

  7. A perfect party dish ...Rich, creamy and yummy.

  8. Nothing can beat these delish Koftas...Amazing share! :)

  9. Such a fabulous recipe, i want to taste that today. Poonam Bachhav You are awesome.

  10. Malai Koftas look absolutely lip smacking!!! One of my favourite recipe.

  11. Lovely chicken recipe with cashew nuts. Could use a bit of Kasoori Methi as well. Lovely pics.