Paneer Lababdar is an easy-to-make paneer (cottage cheese cubes) dish in a creamy, slightly tangy and slightly sweet sauce. Onions, tomatoes, cashews and spices make this a rich, tasty and delicious recipe. This vegetarian recipe from Paneer Lababdar is also naturally gluten free.
About this recipe
Paneer lababdar is a popular paneer sauce dish and can be found on the menu of many Indian restaurants.
My paneer lababdar recipe is more Punjabi style than Mughlai style with the addition of onions, tomatoes, cashews and spices. It does not depend heavily on using a lot of nuts, dried fruits, or seeds. Cashews are the only nuts added in the recipe.
Paneer lababdar is truly a dish that you will always love to prepare for special days or festival days. Its richness, smoothness and delicacy will amaze you every time. Perfectly suited for festive or special occasions.
What is Paneer Lababdar made of?
Paneer lababdar sauce is made from a spicy tomato and cashew paste which is then sautéed with onions, more spices and herbs, has a nice flavor and is full of flavor. Adding sugar and cream gives the dish a creamy and slightly sweet taste.
You need your regular Indian pantry staples to make this restaurant-style lababdar paneer recipe.
- Paneer (Indian cottage cheese): This is the main ingredient of the dish and it is important to use a good quality paneer. In fact, as with all of my paneer recipes, I recommend using Homemade Paneer. This ensures freshness and avoids hidden ingredients and preservatives found in store-bought paneer.
- Tomatoes: Adding a bit of spice to the dish, tomatoes are an important ingredient in the sauce. Make sure to choose tomatoes that aren’t too tangy or tangy.
- Cashews: The creamy consistency of paneer lababdar comes from the cashews. The cashews are crushed into a paste with the tomatoes. Cashews also add a nice sweetness to the dish.
- Cream: The addition of cream also adds to the sweetness and richness of the Panser Lababdar sauce, making it a restaurant-style dish.
- Onions: In the curry, the onions are not mashed, but chopped and lightly caramelized. Thus, they add a bit of sweetness and a slight tangy flavor to the curry.
- Spices and Herbs: Most of the spices and herbs used in this recipe are common and you probably already have them in your kitchen. Garam masala powder can be purchased, but it’s also a great spice to make from scratch and have on hand.
How to make Paneer Lababdar
1. In a small saucepan, add 1.5 cups of chopped tomatoes, 10 to 12 cashews, 1 inch of chopped ginger, 2 to 3 chopped garlic cloves ((medium size), 1 green cardamom, 2 cloves and ½ cup of water, not too tangy or sour.
2. Turn on the flame and simmer this mixture over low heat.
3. Cook until the tomatoes are soft. If the water dries up and the tomatoes aren’t soft, add about 2-3 tablespoons of water and continue cooking. When I cooked it, almost all of the water evaporated.
4. Allow this mixture to warm up or cool completely and add it to a grinder or mixing bowl.
5. Grind into a smooth paste. There should be no cashews or pieces of tomatoes in the dough. You can add water if needed during grinding. Set aside this ground tomato-cashew-spice paste
Sauté onions and tomato puree
6. Heat 2 tablespoons of butter in a pan, kadai or wok. You can also use ghee (clarified butter) or oil.
7. Add 1 tej patta (Indian bay leaf) and sauté for a few seconds.
8. Add ½ cup finely chopped onion.
9. Stir well.
10. Then continue to sauté, stir and cook until the onions are lightly browned or golden.
11. Then add the tomato-cashew-spice paste. The mixture will crackle if there is water in it, so be careful.
12. Mix very well.
13. Add ½ teaspoon of cumin powder, ½ teaspoon of ground coriander (ground coriander) and ½ teaspoon of red chilli powder or cayenne pepper.
14. Stir and sauté this masala. You will see the masala clump together and gather around it.
15. Sauté until you see fat leaving the sides of the masala dough. The masala will also be bright and shiny.
Making Paneer Lababdar
16. Then add 1 cup of water.
17. Mix very well.
18. Add 1 or 2 chopped green peppers.
19. Stir and simmer the sauce.
20. Then season with salt.
21. Add sugar. I added ½ teaspoon of sugar but you can add according to your taste.
22. Add 200 grams of paneer cut into cubes or squares. Also add 2 tablespoons of grated paneer.
Here I used fresh homemade paneer. If you are using frozen paneer, keep it in lukewarm water for a few minutes, then slice and grate it.
23. Mix gently.
24. Then sprinkle 1 teaspoon of kasuri methi (dry fenugreek leaves) crushed with ¼ teaspoon of garam masala powder. Mix very well again.
25. Add ¼ cup low fat cream or 1 to 2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream.
26. Turn off the heat and mix very well. You can also add 1 tablespoon of butter at this step or sprinkle the sauce with butter while serving. This is optional.
27. Garnish the paneer lababdar with chopped coriander leaves (cilantro) and a julienned ginger.