Recipe: Cauliflower & paneer skewers in manchurian sauce

A hot & spicy appetizer bringing back childhood memory of devouring street food

Cauliflower and paneer manchurian skewers in a pan, with a cloth underneath.
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Soft cubes of paneer and tender cauliflower florets cooked in a manchurian sauce, that will remind you of rainy evenings stood at a chaat stall devouring whole plates of spicy food. That’s the best way, we at myHoogah could sum up our experience of enjoying this, because reminisce is all we did. 

These skewers are a great appetizer to get an intimate dinner party going. They’re fairly quick to make and are a guaranteed crowd pleaser! 

Cauliflower and paneer manchurian skewers, placed on a white parchment paper.
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Cauliflower & Paneer Skewers in Manchurian Sauce

Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: Indian
Eat, Eat - Appetizers
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
30 minutes
Yield: 4


Cauliflower & Paneer Pieces

  • 20 nos. Cauliflower (florets)
  • 200 gms Paneer (cut into 1-inch cubes )

For the batter

  • ½ cup Gram Flour / Besan
  • ½ cup Rice Flour
  • ¼ cup Cornflour / Cornstarch
  • ½ inch Raw Ginger (finely chopped )
  • 2 Garlic Pods (finely chopped )
  • 2 Green Chillies (finely chopped )
  • 1 tsp Red Chilli / Cayenne Powder
  • 1 tsp Cumin Powder / Jeera Powder (roasted)
  • ¼ tsp Dry Mango Powder / Aamchur
  • ½ tsp Salt
  • ¼ cup Water
  • Canola / Vegetable Oil
  • 1 tsp Chaat Masala (optional)

Manchurian Sauce

  • 1 Red Bell Peppers (cut into cubes )
  • 1 Green Bell Peppers (cut into cubes)
  • 4 tbsp Garlic Pods (finely chopped)
  • 3 - 4 Green Chillies (finely chopped )
  • 1/2 Medium Sized Onion (medium sized, finely chopped)
  • 1 tbsp Dark Soy Sauce
  • 1 tbsp Schezwan Sauce
  • 1 tbsp Red Chilli Sauce
  • 2 tbsp Tomato Ketchup
  • 3 cups Water
  • 1/2 tsp Black Pepper Powder
  • Salt (to taste)
  • 2 tbsp Canola / Vegetable Oil

For the cornflour mixture

  • 2 tbsp Cornflour / Cornstarch
  • 2 - 3 tbsp Water


  • Frying pan


Marinating the cauliflower

  • Wash the cauliflower florets well and rinse with hot water
  • Spread it on a paper towel and let it dry completely
  • Transfer to a large bowl and sprinkle with salt and chili powder. Toss them slightly and let them sit for 10 minutes so they absorb the seasoning

Making the batter

  • On a chopping board, finely chop the ginger, garlic and green chillies together
  • In a separate bowl, add rice flour, gram flour, cornflour, salt, chili powder, cumin powder and the chopped items from the earlier step. Mix everything well
  • Slowly incorporate water into this dry mixture, folding it fully every time. Continue adding water until the batter reached a consistency that’s neither too thin nor too thick
  • You can use your hands or whisk to ensure that there are no lumps developing
  • Adjust the consistency, by either adding more water or rice flour if it’s too thick or thin respectively

Frying the cauliflower & paneer

  • Pour oil into a large thick frying pan, and heat it on a medium flame for a couple of minutes
  • Dip the cauliflower florets into the batter, one at a time, and drop into the hot oil
  • Deep fry them on a medium flame for about 6 - 8 minutes or until they turn golden in colour*
  • Once done, transfer them to a bowl covered with paper towels so they soak the excess oil
  • Sprinkle chaat masala or salt and pepper on the florets, based on how you like them. Toss them and serve hot just like this!
  • Once all the cauliflowers are fried, dip the paneer cubes as well and fry them in the hot oil and drain out any excess oil
  • If you would like to make the fried cauliflower more appetizing, follow how to make munchurian sauce below

Making the manchurian sauce

  • In a large bowl, mix all the sauce and keep aside
  • In a saucepan, heat oil over a high flame for a minute 
  • Add garlic and saute till they turn golden brown
  • Then add in chopped onions and green chillies. Saute them for a couple of minutes
  • Add the all the sauces one by one and stir together. Make sure your kitchen windows are open or exhaust fans are on because this can get quite spicy!
  • Add 3 cups of water carefully to this sauce mixture and let it come to a boil
  • As it’s boiling, in a small bowl mix cornflour and water to form a paste. Pour this into the boiling sauce, little at a time
  • Keep mixing it throughout, till you get a smooth and silky sauce 
  • Finally add in the bell peppers and saute for couple of minutes, this does not require much of cooking, better to retain the crunchiness in them
  • Add salt and pepper based on your taste and switch off the heat

Making the Skewers

  • Add the fried cauliflower and paneer into the munchurian sauce and coat them well
  • Take a skewer and pierce the coated cauliflower and paneer alternatively with bell peppers in the middle till you reach the tip. Make sure not to over do
  • Once you skewered all of them enjoy with your friends and family the joy of eating a delicious appetizer!
Two hands feasting on cauliflower and paneer manchurian skewers, placed on a white parchment paper.
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  • Before you go ahead and make the delicious skewers : 

  • The cauliflower florets might stick to each other during the frying process, which is completely normal. You can separate them once they’re out of the oil

  • These fritters go deliciously well with the classic combination of sweet tamarind chutney and mint chutney

  • Best had within a few hours of being made, we suggest not storing them beyond this point

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