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5 from 5 votes

Creamy Phool Makhana Curry (Lotus Seed Curry)

Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time30 mins
Course: Curry
Cuisine: Indian
Servings: 6
Author: Vaishali Honawar


  • 2 cups phool makhana or lotus seeds (they keep in the pantry forever-- I am not even sure which year I bought mine, and they're still great)
  • 1 cup green peas
  • 1 medium onion , chopped
  • 3 tsp vegetable oil , like canola
  • 5 cloves of garlic , smashed or minced very fine
  • 2 tsp ginger paste
  • 1 tbsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1/2 to 1 tsp red chilli powder , like paprika or, if you've more adventurous tastebuds, cayenne
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 cup tomato puree
  • 1/4 cup kasoori methi (dried fenugreek leaves-- pick them up when you shop for the lotus seeds at the Indian grocery store)
  • 1/3 cup of cashews
  • Salt to taste
  • 1/4 cup chopped coriander leaves


  • Heat 1 tsp of the oil in a cast-iron or nonstick skillet and add the lotus seeds. Stir-fry them, stirring constantly, until they turn golden-brown and crisp. You don't want them to blacken.
  • Put the lotus seeds in a bowl and set aside.
  • Make a paste with the cashews and 1 cup of water and set aside.
  • Heat the remaining oil in a skillet (if you used a cast-iron one to roast the lotus seeds, replace it with a nonstick or stainless steel one for the rest of the recipe. You're using tomato in the recipe and acidic ingredients don't react happily to cast iron).
  • Add the onion and saute over medium heat until it turns transparent, about 5 minutes.
  • Add the ginger and garlic and saute for a few seconds.
  • Add the powdered spices and saute another 30 seconds.
  • Add the tomato puree and mix thoroughly. Cook, stirring frequently, until the tomatoes darken and the oil begins to express itself.
  • Add the lotus seeds, the frozen green peas, and the kasoori methi. Give it all a good stir and a cup of water.
  • Once the curry comes to a boil, add the cashew paste and salt to taste. If the curry is too thick, add some water. I like my curry rather thick-- perfect to scoop up with an oven-fresh
  • naan.
  • Spritz in a few drops of lemon juice for some added complexity. Garnish with chopped coriander.
  • Enjoy!