Cook's Hideout: Punjabi Thali for RCI-Punjab

July 23, 2007

Punjabi Thali for RCI-Punjab

I finally made it before the dead line for the RCI-Punjab event hosted this time around by Richa of As Dear As Salt. I thought I was on top of it till the 15th of this month and never realized it’s already the 23rd.

So here is my Punjabi thali (in Anti-Clockwise direction) Tandoori Naan, Jeera Rice, Tandoori Gobhi, Paneer Makhmali and Mango milk shake.

Both the curry recipes are adapted from Tarla Dalal’s Swadisht Subzi recipe series. I served the curries with store-bought Tandoori naans and jeera rice (sautéed cumin (jeera), caraway seeds (Shah jeera), bay leaves and green chilies in 1 tsp oil and mixed this with rice).

For dessert I made thick mango shake instead of mango lassi, because my husband is not a big fan of yogurt and lassis. For the milk shake, I blended chunks of fresh mango with light cream and sugar till light and fluffy.

On the whole, this is not a very heart healthy thali, but definitely delicious and satisfying. (A 30 minute work-out might help you with the guilt)

Tandoori Gobhi
This can be served as a side dish for rotis, chapathis and naans or as an appetizer (with less gravy). This dish is my new favorite. All the masalas (spices) blend so well that it tasted nothing like I imagined and my husband didn’t even notice the yogurt.

Cauliflower (Gobhi) – 1 small, cut into florets
Onion – 1 medium, thinly sliced
Green peppers – 1 medium, thinly sliced (I used half green, half red)
Cumin seeds – 1tsp
Salt – to taste

For marinade:
Yogurt – ½ cup, beaten
Besan (Chickpea flour) – 3 tbsp
Chili powder – 1 tsp
Ginger paste – 1 tsp
Garlic paste – 2 tsp
Kasoori Methi – 1 tsp
Salt – 1 tsp

  • Microwave cauliflower in some water for 3-4 minutes or parboil on stove top.
  • Mix all the ingredients for marinade thoroughly. Add cauliflower florets and leave for at least 15 minutes.
  • Heat 1 tsp oil, add cumin seeds and after they splutter, add onions and peppers and sauté till transparent about 8-10 minutes.
  • Add cauliflower along with the marinade and cook for 7-8 minutes or until cauliflower is cooked through. Season with salt and serve hot garnished with coriander leaves.
Paneer Makhmali

Slightly different take on our regular paneer recipe and tasted awesome with naan and rice.

Paneer – 3 cups, cubed
Onion – 1 medium, chopped
Tomato puree – 2 tbsp
Garam masala – ½ tsp
Milk – 1/4 cup (I used light cream)
Salt – to taste

For the marinade:
Mint leaves – 1/2 cup
Coriander leaves – 2 cups
Green chilies – 3-4
Ginger paste – 1 tsp
Lemon juice – 3 tsp
Cashews – ¼ cup
Salt – to taste

  • Grind all the ingredients for the marinade into a thick paste with little water.
  • Marinate paneer pieces in this mixture for at least 15 minutes.
  • Heat 2 tsp oil in a pan; add onions and sauté till pink. Add tomato puree and 1/4 cup water, cook covered for about 5 minutes.
  • Slide in the paneer pieces and cook for 8-10 minutes.
  • Add milk (or cream) and cook on medium low flame till the milk cooks and evaporates.
  • Add garam masala and season with salt. Remove from heat and serve immediately.


  1. Pavani, the thali looks great. Both the gravies look delicious and different too. Thanks for such great recipes.

  2. I liked the menu, and all the dishes in the thali. Nice entry Pavani :)

  3. Nice entry pavani. Looks delicious. Viji

  4. Delicious Thali, Pavani...I must say WOW!!
    All the recipes look tempting!! I am inviting myself :)

  5. Hi Pavani! Tha Paneer dish sounds lip-smacking. Can we have a close-up shot of it (if you have!) pls.....

  6. Pavani ...your punjabi tali looks great..naan looks so tempting...and you have a nice blog here..


  7. hey, that looks like one wholesome thali :) liked the name paneer makhmali, gravy looks so thick & creamy, true to it's name :) tandoori gobi must taste YUM with all those spices!
    thanks for this lovely thali!

  8. Oh,you came up with the whole thali,did you?:))
    Looks so delicious,I could invite myself over!

  9. Pavani, u have a feast laid out., even im not a big fan of yogurt based sweet drinks...

  10. Your Thali looks very inviting! Your recipe for tandoori gobi is being bookmarked. :)

  11. these are just awesome recipes...I am sure going to try the tandoori gobi

  12. hey you made a thali too!! that looks great. loved the name paneer makmali. nice selection of recipes!!

  13. Lovely thali here. Liked your gobi recipe dear.

  14. This is not fair. Just the thali? When are we invited?

  15. Hi Pavani! your punjabi thali looks fabulous and lovely Great entry to RCI. Thanks for sharing.

    BTW you have been tagged by me on my meme article. If you get the time, have a look at my blog. Thanks and have a great day.

  16. Delcious Pumjabi spread there Pavani!!!

  17. Tandoori gobi sounds great. I have to try this soon.Nice recipe.


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