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How to Make Malai Kofta | Malai Kofta Curry

Written By Rajesh Kumar on Monday, 20 June 2016 | 23:03

Malai Kofta | Malai Kofta Curry

malai kofta is a popular as well as most sought after vegetarian indian dish in restaurants.malai means cream and kofta are fried dumpling balls. usually they are made up of mashed potatoes-veggies, with or without grated paneer. other kofta gravy recipes on the blog are cabbage kofta curry and lauki kofta recipe.


in this malai kofta recipe the koftas are made with potatoes and paneer. these melt in the mouth koftas are dunked in a creamy, sweet and mildly spiced curry.

to make any paneer dish its always better to make paneer at home. if you have time then check this method to make paneer at stove top. or if you are in hurry then you can also make paneer in microwave. i personally prefer the stove top method of making paneer as its more healthy than making paneer in microwave.

there are many variations of the malai kofta curry recipe. here the curry is made from ground cashew paste, onion paste and tomato puree. i have not used cream in this recipe. for the garnish you can use cream if you prefer.

the cashew paste, makes the curry creamy, so need to add cream. you can also use soaked almonds instead of cashews or both soaked almonds and cashews.

i have already shared the aloo paneer kofta recipe just a few days back. you can make stuffed koftas they way i made them for snacks or make them the way i have shown here. in this version, the koftas are not stuffed with dry fruits.


malai kofta is best served with tandoori naan, garlic naan or tandoori rotis. even steamed basmati rice or jeera rice goes well with it. i served with phulkas.

the gravy or curry can be kept white or colored red or brown by using spice powders and tomato puree. both ways the malai kofta tastes good.

the recipe below will make 6-7 koftas with a curry for 3-4 people. let me tell you that malai kofta is a heavy meal. so even 2 koftas would be enough per serving.

malai kofta curry recipe below:-



ingredients (measuring cup used, 1 cup = 250 ml)

for the kofta:

  • 100 gms paneer/cottage cheese, grated
  • 2 medium size potatoes, boiled, peeled and grated
  • ¼ tsp red chili powder/lal mirch powder
  • 1 tbsp cornflour
  • a pinch or ¼ tsp garam masala
  • ¾ tbsp almond flour or ¾ tbsp milk powder or ¾ tbsp khoya/evaporated milk
  • salt as required

for the gravy/curry:

  • ½ cup onion paste, about 2 medium to large onions, pureed
  • 1 cup tomato puree, about 2 large tomatoes pureed
  • ¼ cup cashew paste, 12 to 15 cashews soaked in warm water for 30 minutes and then blended to a smooth paste
  • ¼ tsp turmeric powder
  • ¾ tsp red chili powder/lal mirch powder
  • 1 inch ginger/adrak - 4-5 garlic cloves/lahsun - made in to a fine paste in a mortar-pestle
  • ¼ tsp garam masala
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tsp kasuri methi/dry fenugreek leaves
  • salt as required
  • sugar as required (optional)
  • oil for shallow or deep frying the koftas
whole spices/garam masala:

  • 1 bay leaf/tej patta
  • 1 inch cinnamon/dal chini
  • 1 or 2 black cardamom/badi elaichi
  • 2-3 green cardamom/hari elaichi or choti elaichi
  • a pinch of mace/jayitri
  • 2-3 cloves/laung

for garnish:

1 tbsp grated paneer
1 or 2 tbsp cream
a few chopped coriander leaves/dhania patta

how to make the recipe:-

  1. mix all the ingredients mentioned under kofta ingredient list except oil in a bowl.
  2. make medium sized balls and fry the koftas in medium hot oil till golden.
  3. keep aside.
  4. remove extra oil from the same pan and keep about 1 or 1.5 tbsp oil.
  5. add all the whole spices and fry till the oil becomes fragrant.
  6. first add the onion paste and brown it.
  7. now add the ginger-garlic paste and fry for some seconds till the raw aroma of the paste goes away.
  8. add the tomato puree and saute for 2-3 minutes.
  9. add the turmeric powder, red chili powder, garam masala powder and cashew paste.
  10. stir and saute till the oil starts to leave the sides of the masala paste. add water and stir.
  11. simmer till the gravy begins to thicken. takes approx 11-12 minutes on a low flame.
  12. towards the end add crushed kasuri methi leaves and salt.
  13. you can also add sugar if you want a light sweet taste in the curry. simmer for 1-2 minutes more.
  14. add the koftas in the curry if serving immediately or you can also add the curry first in the serving plate or bowl and then place the koftas.
  15. garnish the malai kofta with some cream, grated paneer and coriander leaves.
  16. serve malai kofta hot with rotis, naan, steamed basmati rice or jeera rice.

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