Cashew Cauliflower Makhani (or Butter Chicken with Cashews)

I made one of my favorite new curry recipes last night. It’s based on a simple recipe for butter chicken, but since I’m generally unimpressed with chicken (I like to call it non-vegetarian tofu in a derisive tone), I make it with cashews and cauliflower instead. It can, of course, be made with chicken, as well. After a couple of tweaks to the original recipe, I’ve finally got it where I want it. Enjoy!


1/3 cup unsalted cashews
1 oz butter
1 lb. of chicken, cubed, or 1 lb. of cauliflower florets
1 bell pepper, seeded and cut into strips
1 onion, peeled and chopped
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground hot red pepper or paprika
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon garam masala
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 (6 oz) can tomato paste
1 (8 oz) can tomato sauce
1 cup sour cream or plain yogurt
extra water, as needed

Melt butter over medium-low heat. Add cashews and roast slowly until golden; lower heat if necessary to keep from burning. Add cauliflower, onion, garlic and peppers and sauté in the cashew butter mixture a few minutes. Add ginger, spices, tomato paste and tomato sauce to the pan, along with some water.

Simmer covered until chicken or cauliflower reaches desired doneness. If sauce gets too thick, add more water. Add the cream and heat through. Serve over rice or with bread.

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