Monday, May 10, 2010

Shortcut Spicy Malai Kofta

Source: Fun and Food Blog

In honor of my husband's birthday week, I wanted to cook his most favorite dish in the world, Malai Kofta. (Funny thing is that similar to the Fun and Food blogger, my husband ALSO actually judges the quality of an Indian Restaurant by it's Malai Kofta.) I had told myself that I wouldn't ever try making it because it would never match his restaurant standards, but curiosity gave in.. and here I am.

I tried making this about 2 months ago and it was a total disaster. I've made multiple recipes from Fun and Food Blog, so I was quite confident that this recipe would turn out well. For some reason my koftas completely broke apart and ended up being a messy oily disaster. Deep frying is also my worst enemy. It never turns out well and is a mess to deal with the oil and cleaning the vessel afterward.

It was 7:30pm after a long day at work, and the last thing I wanted to do was even consider deep frying again.. and then the light bulb went off! Trader Joe's Vegetable
Masala Burgers!


  • 2 medium Onions - finely chopped (I used 1 big onion)
  • 1 can of Tomato Puree (I used 3 roma tomatoes)
  • 12-15 Cashews
  • 1 tbsp ginger-garlic paste
  • 1 tsp Garam Masala
  • 2 tsp Kitchen King Masala
  • 2 tsp Jeera
  • 1 tbsp Cumin-Coriander Powder
  • 2 tbsp Red Chilli Powder
  • 2 tsp Turmeric Powder
  • 1 cup Fresh or Whipping Cream (I used 1/2 cup)
  • 1 inch Cinnamon Stick
  • 2 Green Cardamon
  • 2 Cloves
  • 1 Bay Leaf
  • 1 big tbsp Tandoori Masala
  • 2 tbsp Coriander Leaves, finely chopped
  • Salt to taste

Blend the tomatoes with cashews, kitchen king masala, cumin-coriander powder, garam masala, chilli powder and turmeric powder to smooth paste. (Yes.. these masalas make the gravy VERY spicy!)

Heat oil in a pan and add jeera, cinnamon stick, cloves, cardamom and bay leaf and saute it for a few mins, then add the chopped onions to it till they are pinkish golden in color. Add the ginger-garlic paste, and then the tomato-cashew puree. Add 1 1/2 cups water and mix well to form the gravy. When it starts simmering add salt, tandoori masala, and whipping cream and cook for further 10-15 minutes over a low flame. If you think it is thick and need to make it liquid, add some whole milk (I just added water and it tasted fine).

Remove from heat, mix in finely chopped coriander and keep it aside. I also added some lemon juice.

Kuty's Twist: Masala Burger Koftas!

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.

Defrost the masala burgers and mash them with your hands. You should be able to mash and form 4 balls or log shaped koftas from 1 burger. These burgers have the perfect texture to form into nice shapes. You won't need to add any breadcrumbs or besan. And best of all.. No deep frying!

Place your koftas on a sprayed pan. Bake for 10-15 mins (flip over once). Broil for 1-2 mins if you want a crispier taste.

Contrary to the original recipe, the tandoori masala made the gravy more red than yellow. I added extra turmeric powder, but still wasn't able to get that rich yellow color.

Keep the koftas and gravy separate and pour
the gravy over them when it's time to serve.

p.s. Thanks to my dear friend Ulupi. who partially gave me this idea. She has used these burgers to make aloo tikki chaat.


  1. Looks delicious ( surely it will also taste good too)!
    Have asked Mami to cook this dish the next time when we have guests - maybe when your mom and dad visit us here - hopefully it will not be a disaster.

  2. Well what did he think after you have gone to all this trouble?

  3. I just tried this recipe and it came out well! I didn't have tandoori masala so skipped that the gravy turned out nice and yellow. I didn't have bay leaves neither so added curry leaves to have leaf component, lol and it turned out fine! My brother commented that it tasted just like out of a restaurant:) And the burgers were such a better option than frying the koftas.

  4. Savsun- Thanks for trying and glad it came out well! Maybe it doesn't even need the tandoori masala. LOL at the curry leaves. You made a south indian version of malai kofta!

  5. Hey ... I tried this recipe out for some special ladies on Valentine's Day and it came out really well :). I didn't have time to go to Trader Joe's so I used Tandoor Chef Veg. Masala Burgers. Thanks a bunch!

  6. That's awesome man! What a sweet thing to do!