Kaju Makhana curry | Phool Makhana Gravy Curry

This dish made with fried Cashews and lotus seeds (Phool Makhana) in thick spicy gravy is very popular at wedding feasts. This special curry eaten with Pooris or Chapathis is simply superb and something one can never tire of eating!!!

Of late caterers at Andhra wedding feasts are serving Phool Makhana in one or the other combinations as a special item. After the initial sweet course is over, it has become almost mandatory to serve some type of Makhana curry with Rotis.

Andhra Caterers prepare Makhana curry in different ways. Sometimes it is made along with some vegetables; other times it could be a gravy dish. Anyway, small variations are introduced to dish out something special with Makhanas.

The Andhra style curries are usually high on spices. After serving with Roti, it is also often served along with Pulao in the next course with some variation.

The Phool Makhana curry recipe I am presenting is not exactly in the Andhra wedding style. I have reduced the degree of salt and spices. This curry will go very well with Rotis as well as with Pulao.

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Kaju Makhana curry |  Phool Makhana Gravy Curry


Cashew Nuts:

Whole Cashew nuts are better than halved nuts in this curry. However, you could use whichever you like.

Makhana (Lotus Seeds):

Roast the Makhanas in a little oil on low flame carefully until they are crisp and brown. If the Makhana is not fried uniformly crisp and brown it will retain a raw taste when it is put in the gravy. Moreover it will not absorb the gravy and its flavours if it is not crisp enough.

Khuskhus (Poppy Seeds):

Khus Khus is a ubiquitous ingredient in much of South Indian cuisine. Actually Khus Khus enhances the taste of the gravy. If Khus khus is not available you could use Cashew Nuts. But keep it in mind that Khus Khus is the secret to the special taste of this curry.

Getting the Gravy right:

Let the gravy cook slowly on a low flame. The flavours of the spices will get absorbed by the gravy while the gravy thickens. Keep stirring the gravy now and then to avoid it from sticking to the bottom of the pan.

Finally, once Makhana is added to the gravy, let it cook just for two minutes. Too much of cooking may turn the Makhanas into a lumpy paste.

Kaju Makhana curry | Phool Makhana Gravy Curry - Recipe Video

Kaju Makhana curry | Phool Makhana Gravy Curry

Veg Curries | vegetarian
  • Prep Time 5 mins
  • Cook Time 25 mins
  • Total Time 30 mins
  • Servings 5


  • 75 gms Cashews (Whole)
  • 1 cup Lotus Seeds (Phool Makhana) (large cup)
  • For Gravy
  • 4 tbsp Oil
  • 1 inch Ginger
  • 7 - 8 Garlic Pods
  • 1 cup Onion
  • 1/4 cup Dry Coconut
  • 4 - 5 Green Chilli
  • 1/4 cup Pepper
  • 1 tbsp Poppy Seeds (Khus Khus)
  • 2 Tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup Curd
  • For the Curry
  • 2 tbsp Oil
  • 1/4 tsp Turmeric
  • 1 tsp Coriander Powder
  • 1/4 tsp Cumin (Zeera) Powder
  • Masala Gravy
  • 1.5 cup Water
  • Salt – To taste
  • 1 tsp Ghee
  • Coriander Leaves (Kothmir) chopped – a little


  1. Heat 2 tbsps oil in a pan. Fry cashew nuts to a golden brown colour and take out. In the same pan fry the Phool Makhanas on very low heat till crisp and keep aside.
  2. Now add 2 tbsps of oil for the gravy and add the spices (Ginger, garlic and pepper), onion, green chillies and coconut. Fry till onions turn light golden colour.
  3. Add Poppy seeds and fry till the Poppy seeds start to splutter. Now add tomatoes and cook till soft.
  4. Let the mixture cool. Then grind the whole in a mixer. Add curds and a little water to get a paste of a creamy texture.
  5. Now heat the oil reserved for curry. Put in turmeric, coriander powder and cumin powder and fry, Add little water to the masala and take care to avoid burning.
  6. Add the ground paste, salt and water to the fried masala. Close the lid and let it cook till gravy thickens and oil floats to the top. Keep stirring occasionally. (If the gravy appears too thick you may add a little water to get desired consistency).
  7. It will take 12- 15 minutes for the gravy to thicken and oil to separate. At this point add the fried cashew, fried Makhanas, chopped coriander leaves and ghee. Mix well and let cook. Take it down from the stove after two minutes.
  8. The ratio of spice is just ideal if this curry is to be eaten with Roti or Pulao. If you choose to eat it with plain rice you may need to increase the amounts of spices a little bit.

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Kaju Makhana curry |  Phool Makhana Gravy Curry