Navratan korma is a rich luxurious curry dish made with mixed vegetables and lot of dry fruits. This recipe is flavorful and mildly sweet. It is made with 9 ingredients and consists of plenty of nuts, dry fruits, assorted vegetables, fruits, cream, a lot of spices and a few herbs. There are both vegetarian as well as non-vegetarian versions of preparing this dish. This recipe is a delicious vegetarian version of navratan korma.
What is Navratan Korma
Do you know why this recipe is called as Navratan korma? The dish is named as a tribute to the original navratan – the nine jewels or the nine courtiers of the mughal emperor Akbar.
By the way for all those who do not know the Hindi language, ‘Nav’ means nine and ‘ratan’ means a jewel. So the English translation of navratan is nine jewels. And korma or kurma is a dish with yogurt, cream, nuts and seeds paste or a coconut base.
Navratan korma is one recipe which I always dreaded making. Just the name of this dish would scare me. It seemed to me a very royal, rich and time consuming recipe. I was wrong. It is such an easy recipe but yes it is rich, royal and delicious.
You can consider making navratan korma for special occasions like expecting a guest at home, birthday party or during festive times like Diwali, Holi and so on.
So you see this Navratan Korma is a dish made with nine jewels. These nine jewels can be an assortment of nine veggies or nine garnishing ingredients.
About This Navratan Korma
I usually make this dish with 5 to 6 veggies. You can choose your choice of mixed veggies. You can also choose to have a mix of 9 different veggies. Vegetables like cauliflower, carrots, green peas, corn kernels, capsicum (bell pepper), french beans, potatoes, baby corn are a good choice.
I have used 9 ingredients for the garnish. The garnish consists of nuts, seeds, herbs and pineapple. One fruit that is added to Navratan korma is pineapple. I have had navratan korma many times in the Mumbai restaurants and always without fail, there would be pineapple in the korma.
But with Pineapple you have to be careful. Since we are using yogurt and cream in this dish, the pineapple has to be added to the garnishing. If you mix it with the korma, then you should serve immediately. Otherwise even if you serve after some minutes, then you get bitter notes in the korma.
Adding pineapple is optional. So don’t add pineapple if you do not like a sweet taste in a creamy dish. Instead of pineapple you can also add apple or grapes or pomegranate. Another ingredient that can be added is paneer.
Always soak the poppy seeds before blending. Or else they take a lot of time to be ground finely.
The nuts and seeds base together with the mix veggies make this dish nutritious but it is also rich and heavy. There is cream, yogurt and also a rich paste made with melon seeds, cashew, almonds and poppy seeds. Overall it is a luxurious and heavy dish that you can make and enjoy for special occasions.
Navratan korma is an easy recipe because after you are done with making the paste. Then all you have to do is brown the onions with whole spices, add the paste, curd, veggies and let the korma simmer till the veggies are cooked.
All in all this shahi navratan korma is a dish to be thoroughly enjoyed on festive occasions like Diwali or Holi. So I thought of sharing this rich and royal recipe with all of you on the occasion of Holi. The recipe has been adapted from Jiggs Kalra’s book “Prashad – Cooking with Indian Masters”.
Serve navratan korma with tandoori roti, naan, chapati or paratha or rumali roti. It also goes well with jeera rice or biryani rice.
How to make Navratan Korma
To make this dish, there are 3 main steps you need to follow. I have divided stepwise photos guide illustrating these three steps.
- Step 1 – preparing the nuts and seeds paste
- Step 2 – making navratan korma
- Step 3 – preparing garnishing ingredients
Lets start with step 1 – preparing the nuts and seeds paste
1. Take 1 tablespoon poppy seeds (khus khus), 10 to 12 almonds, 10 to 12 cashews and 1 tablespoon melon seeds (magaz) in a bowl.
2. Add enough hot water and soak for 30 to 40 minutes. When the nuts-seeds are soaking, you can chop the veggies.
3. Then from this soaked mixture, remove and peel the almonds. Add them to the grinder or blender jar.
4. Drain the water from the remaining nuts-seeds and also add them also to the jar. Add ¼ cup of water.
5. Grind or blend to a smooth fine paste. There should be no chunks of nuts in the paste. Add more water if required while grinding to a paste. Keep the nuts and seeds paste aside.
Making Navratan Korma
6. Heat 2 tablespoons of ghee in a deep-bottomed pan or pot.
7. Add the following whole spices and saute the spices for a few seconds or till they splutter and become aromatic.
- 2 to 3 green cardamom
- 1 black cardamom
- 3 cloves
- 1 inch stick of cinnamon
- 1 tej patta (Indian bay leaf)
- 2 single strands of mace
8. Then add ½ cup thinly sliced onions.
9. Stir and saute the onions on low to medium heat stirring often.
10. When the onions are caramelizing, take ½ cup fresh curd (100 grams) in a small bowl. With a spoon or a small wired whisk, beat it till smooth. Keep aside.
11. Saute the onions till they turn golden.
12. Then add ½ tablespoon of ginger-garlic paste and 1 chopped green chili.
13. Stir and saute for a few seconds or till the raw aroma of ginger-garlic goes away.
14. Add the prepared ground nuts and seeds paste.
15. Then add the beaten curd and mix well. Before adding the beaten curd either you can switch off the heat or keep the heat to a low.
As soon as you add the curd, combine and mix thoroughly.
16. Now add ½ teaspoon turmeric powder and 1 teaspoon red chilli powder (or paprika).
17. Stir and saute for 3 to 4 minutes on a low heat. Do stir often so that the mixture does not get stuck to the bottom of the pan.
18. Now add the mixed veggies. I have added the following veggies:
- ½ cup chopped carrots
- ½ cup shelled peas or frozen peas
- ¾ cup chopped potatoes or 150 grams
- ¼ cup chopped green beans or 40 to 50 grams
- 8 to 9 babycorn – chopped (optional)
- 1 cup chopped cauliflower (gobi florets) – optional
19. Stir and mix very well again.
20. Add 1 cup of water.
21. Stir and mix very well.
22. Season with salt as per taste. Cover the pan and allow the veggies to cook.
For garnishing navratan korma
23. When the veggies are cooking, you can prepare the garnish and keep it aside.
To make the garnish – heat 1 tablespoon ghee in a small frying pan. Add 6 to 7 blanched almonds (You can soak these almonds when soaking the nuts for the paste or separately blanch them).
24. Saute almonds till they turn a pale golden.
25. Take them to one side of the pan and now add 10 pistachios, 10 cashews, 10 walnut halves. Saute till the cashews turn a light golden.
26. Now add 1 tablespoon raisins and ½ tablespoon melon seeds. Saute for some seconds.
27. Then add ½ cup chopped pineapple cubes. Saute for a minute.
28. Next add 1 tablespoon mint leaves, a pinch of saffron strands and 2 teaspoon ginger julienne.
29. Saute for half a minute and keep aside.
30. It will take 25 to 30 minutes for the veggies to cook. While cooking, if the gravy becomes too thick then do add some water.
You can keep the consistency of the gravy to medium to medium-thick.
31. When the veggies are cooked, add ⅓ cup light cream or ¼ cup heavy cream. This is a rich creamy luxurious dish made for special occasions.
32. Stir and mix very well with the rest of the korma. Switch off the heat.
33. Lastly sprinkle ¼ to ½ garam masala powder and stir.
34. While serving garnish the korma with the sauteed garnishing ingredients. Serve navratan korma with tandoori roti, naan, chapatis or parathas. It also goes well with cumin rice or biryani rice.
More awesome curry recipes
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Navratan korma is made with 9 ingredients and consists of plenty of nuts, dry fruits, assorted vegetables, fruits, cream, a lot of spices and a few herbs.
Prep Time 40 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 1 hr 10 mins
For the nuts and seeds paste
Preparing nuts and seeds paste
Soak all the dry fruits and seeds in hot water for 30 to 40 minutes.
Remove the peels from the almonds and add the peeled almonds in a grinder or blender jar.
Then drain water from the remaining nuts-seeds mixture and also add them to the grinder jar.
Add ¼ cup water and grind to a smooth fine paste. Add more water if required while making the paste. Keep this paste aside.
Making navratan korma
Heat ghee in a thick bottomed pot or a deep pan. Add all the “whole spices” mentioned above and fry till they crackle and become aromatic.
Add the sliced onions and saute them till they turn golden stirring often.
Now add the ginger-garlic paste and chopped green chilies. Saute for a few seconds or till the raw aroma of ginger-garlic goes away.
Now add the nuts-seeds paste and curd. Mix well. When you add the curd then either keep the heat to low or switch off the heat. Make sure you beat the curd before you add and mix it quickly as soon as you add it.
Then add turmeric and red chili powder. Stir again.
Stir and saute for 3 to 4 minutes on a low heat. Do stir often so that the mixture does not get stuck to the bottom of the pan.
Then add the mixed veggies. Stir.
Next add 1 cup water. Season with salt. Mix very well.
Cover and simmer the veggies till they are cooked and fork tender. Take care not to overcook them.
Once the veggies are cooked, add the cream and stir it with the rest of the gravy. Switch off the heat.
Sprinkle garam masala powder. Cover and keep aside.
Garnishing navratan korma
Heat 1 tablespoon ghee in a small frying pan. Add 6 to 7 blanched almonds (you can soak these almonds when soaking the nuts for the paste and then peel them).
Saute almonds till they turn a pale golden.
Take them to one side of the pan and now add 10 pistachios, 10 cashews, 10 walnut halves. Saute till the cashews turn a light golden.
Now add 1 tablespoon raisins and ½ tablespoon melon seeds. Saute for some seconds.
Then add ½ cup chopped pineapple cubes. Saute for a minute.
Next add 1 tablespoon mint leaves, a pinch of saffron strands and 2 teaspoon ginger julienne.
Saute for half a minute.
Serving navratan korma
While serving garnish the korma with the sauteed nuts, seeds and pineapple cubes. Serve it with indian flatbread like tandoori roti, naan, chapatis or parathas. It also goes well with cumin rice.
- If you do not have melon seeds, still you can make the korma with the rest of the ingredients. Just increase 1 tablespoon of almonds and 1 tablespoon of cashew.
- Always soak the poppy seeds before blending. Or else they take a lot of time to be ground finely.
- Adding pineapple is optional. So don’t add pineapple if you do not like a sweet taste in a creamy dish. Instead of pineapple you can also add apples or grapes.
- You can also add paneer in it.
- You can choose your choice of mixed veggies or you can also choose to make navratan korma with a mix of 9 different veggies. You can add mixed vegetables like cauliflower, potatoes, green peas, baby corn, corn kernels, bell pepper, french beans, carrots.
Amount Per Serving
Calories 374 Calories from Fat 216
% Daily Value*
Saturated Fat 9g56%
Trans Fat 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat 5g
Monounsaturated Fat 8g
Vitamin A 4569IU91%
Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) 1mg67%
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) 1mg59%
Vitamin B3 (Niacin) 2mg10%
Vitamin B6 1mg50%
Vitamin B12 1µg17%
Vitamin C 42mg51%
Vitamin D 1µg7%
Vitamin E 1mg7%
Vitamin K 16µg15%
Vitamin B9 (Folate) 66µg17%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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This Navratan Korma post from the blog archives first published in March 2012 has been republished and updated on 4 September 2021.