This dish of Naratna Korma is a treasure loaded with nine culinary jewels (nav is nine and rattan is jewels) in the guise of paneer cheese, vegetables, and nuts. It is a rich classic of Mughlai cuisine served on special occasion.
So try this sweet but delicious Paneer Curry recipe, Navratna Korma!!
Yield: Serves 4
1 cup fresh or canned coconut milk (नारीयल पानी)
250 grams cottage cheese ,(पनीर/paneer)
1 cup plain yogurt , whisked until smooth (दही)
1 1/2 cups water (पानी)
1 tsp salt , or to taste (नमक)
3 tbsp vegetable oil (तेल)
1/4 cup coarsely chopped raw cashews (काजु)
1/4 cup coarsely chopped raw almonds (बादाम)
1/4 cup raisins (कीसमीस)
3 cups finely chopped mixed fresh or (thawed) frozen vegetables, such as carrots, potatoes, cauliflower, beans and peas (मिक्स सबजी- गाजर,आलु, फुलगोबी,फनसी,मटर,आदी)
2 bay leaves (तेज पत्ता)
5 black cardamom pods , pounded lightly to break the skin (इलाइची)
2 (1-inch) sticks cinnamon (दालचीनी)
4 whole cloves (लवंग)
1 large large onion , finely chopped (प्याज)
1 tbsp peeled minced fresh ginger (अदरक)
2 tsp fresh garlic , minced (लेहसुन)
plain yogurt fresh green chillies (हरी मीर्च)
1 tbsp ground coriander (धनीया)
1 tsp ground cumin (जीरा)
1 tsp garam masala + more for garnish (गरम मसाला)
1/2 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro , including soft stems
2. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a large non-stick saucepan over medium-high heat and cook the cashews, almonds, and raisins, stirring, until the raisins expand, about 1 minute. Transfer to a bowl. Add 1 more tbsp oil to the same pan and cook the vegetables, stirring, until golden, about 10 minutes. Transfer to a different bowl.
3. Add the remaining 1 tbsp oil to the same pan and cook the bay leaves, cardamom pods, cinnamon, and cloves, stirring, about 1 minute. Add the onion and cook, stirring, until well browned, 10 minutes. Add the ginger, garlic, and green chillies and stir about 1 minute. Then add the coriander, cumin, and 1 tsp garam masala and stir another minute.
4. Add the yogurt-coconut milk mixture and cook, stirring about 5 minutes. Mix in the paneer cheese pieces and the cooked vegetables, cover the pan, reduce the heat to medium-low, and simmer until the vegetables are tender and the sauce is very thick, about 15 minutes. Mix in the cilantro during the last 5 minutes of cooking. Transfer to a serving dish, garnish with the nut-raisin mixture, sprinkle on same garam masala, and serve.
Variation: If you want the vegetables to retain their color, don’t saute them as described in Step 2, but cover and cook them in the microwave on high power for 4 minutes. Then add them to the dish along with the paneer cheese.