Malai kofta

In all likelihood, this is going to be my last post for the work week (I plan to try out something over the weekend, let’s see about that later). A lot of dishes that I try out aren’t exactly D’s favourites. Oh yeah, I live to satisfy myself quite a bit :). However, I’ve been asking him to give me a list of dishes that he’d like me to try out and he’d marked Malai Kofta on top. Wanted to give it a try a few weeks back, but somehow the timing didn’t work out alright. Last weekend, I made it and it came out quite well. It’s definitely not hard to make but it’s quite a lot of steps to be followed. Also, I hate this idea of deep frying for not just the health reason but also – what the hell do you do with the leftover oil. My mil uses it while making dosas and stuff but honestly, I don’t enjoy the look of seeing a pan full of oil (the next time I am going to try and bake the koftas). Anywho, the dish was a hit in the entire house. Everyone right from Adya to my FIL liked it. When you have the time in hand and would like to experiment, then this is definitely a must try! I love onion tomato gravy which is elevated with cream/ cashew nut (No wonder, my weighing scale isn’t friendly to me..). I went through multiple recipes online but did not stick to any one recipe. The gravy base is similar to the Green Peas masala I made a while back + some heavy (pun intended) but gooooood stuff added in. The koftas are literally just a mix of paneer & aloo (you can variate with the ratio am sure but roughly equal quantities is good). So here you go!

Malai kofta
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
35 mins
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Indian
For the kofta
  • 1.5 cups fresh paneer/ cottage cheese
  • 2 nos boiled potatoes
  • 1/2 tsp red chilli powder
  • 1 tsp salt (adjust as required)
  • 3 tbsp corn flour
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp corn flour (optional)
For the puree
  • 2 nos onions
  • 2 nos tomatoes
  • 2 nos green chillies
  • 1 inch ginger
  • 5 pods garlic
  • 1/8 cup cashew nuts
  • 1/8 cup almonds
  • 1.5 tbsp oil
  • 1 tsp salt (adjust as required)
For the gravy
  • 1 no bayleaf
  • 4 nos cloves
  • 2 nos cardamom
  • 1 inch cinnamon stick
  • 1/2 tsp red chilli powder
  • 3/4 tsp garam masala powder
  • 1/8 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt (adjust as required)
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/4 cup fresh cream
  • 1/4 tsp kasuri methi/ dried fenugreek leaves
For the kofta
  1. If you had refrigerated the paneer, then immerse it in hot water for 30-45 minutes and the squeeze the excess water of the paneer. 

  2. In a large bowl, crumble the paneer.

  3. To this add the boiled & mashed potatoes, red chilli powder, garam masala, corn flour & salt and mix into a pliable dough. 

  4. Roll the dough into small lemon size balls. 

  5. You can roll each of the ball in a dust of corn flour (optional step - This step helps in ensuring the balls are crispy on the outside).

  6. Heat a pan/ kadai filled with oil. Once the oil is heated up, fry the kofta balls in batches till they brown and let them dry on a paper towel.

For the puree
  1. Roughly chop the onions, tomatoes, garlic, ginger & green chillies.

  2. Heat a pan/ kadai with some oil & throw in the green chillies, garlic & ginger. Saute for 30 seconds.

  3. To this, add the onions and saute till it starts to brown. 

  4. At this stage, add the tomatoes & a bit of salt and cook well (say 5-7 minutes on high heat).

  5. At this stage, add the cashews & almonds and fry for another 2-3 minutes and turn off the heat. 

  6. Once the mixture cools down, puree it in a mixer/ blender.

For the gravy
  1. Heat a pan/ kadai with some oil & throw in the bayleaf, cinnamon stick, clove & cardamom.

  2. To this add the onion-tomato puree & saute for 1 minute.

  3. Now add all the dry spices - red chilli powder, coriander powder, cumin powder & garam masala and stir in continously for a minute or two. 

  4. Now pour 2 cups of water & some salt and let the mixture boil for 5-7 minutes. Taste and adjust salt accordingly.

  5. Once the raw smell of the spices fade, add the cream and let it boil for just a minute. 

  6. Crush the kasuri methi/ dried fenugreek leaves in between your palms & add to the mixture at this stage. 

  7. Turn off the heat & dunk in the kofta balls that have been made ready.

  8. Serve hot on the side of rotis/ pulao.

Stepwise pictures

For the kofta

For the puree

For the gravy



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