Vegetable ‘Butter’ Masala

Jackie Kearney

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  • Selection of vegetables:
  • 350g new potatoes, skin on and 2-3cm diced
  • 2 carrots, peeled and 2cm diced
  • 200g cauliflower, 2-3cm florets
  • 100g green beans, top and tailed
  • 100g mushrooms, 2-3cm diced
  • 2 tbsp shashlik paste, mixed with 1-2 tbsp plain soya yoghurt or substitute with following simple marinade
  • Basic marinade:
  • 1-2 tbsp plain soya yoghurt
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed and chopped
  • 1” piece of ginger, finely minced
  • 1 green chilli, finely chopped
  • 1 large red chilli, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp paprika powder
  • ½ tsp chilli powder
  • 2 tsp garam masala
  • For the butter masala:
  • 50g veg oil
  • 6 cardamon pods, crushed
  • 2” piece of cinnamon
  • 6 cloves
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2” thumb fresh ginger, finely chopped
  • 4 green chillies, cut lengthways (add less if you want it less spicy)
  • 2 ½ tsp paprika powder (mild variety)
  • ½-1 tsp hot chilli powder (add less if you want it less spicy)
  • 1 tsp garam masala powder
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 4 tbsp tomato puree
  • 120ml soy or almond cream
  • 2 tbsp agave syrup
  • 1 tsp fenugreek powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Handful of fresh coriander


  • Marinate prepared vegetables, using the basic marinade you have made yourself. Cover and set aside in fridge for half an hour.
  • In a large pan, add the vegetable oil then add the cardamom, cinnamon and cloves. Gently fry until aroma is released, then add chopped onion. Fry gently until onion is transparent and starting to turn golden. Remove the whole spices.
  • Lay the marinated vegetables (except the green beans and mushrooms) on a well oiled tray and bake in a hot oven (200C) for 15 minutes, turning occasionally to ensure nicely browned on all sides. The potatoes may need an additional 5-10 minutes depending on the size of the pieces. Check they are cooked through. Add the green beans and mushrooms to the tray and bake for another 10 minutes.
  • Add the ginger, chillies, paprika, coriander, garam masala and fenugreek powder to the large pan, and fry gently for 2 minutes. Then add the tomato puree, syrup and two cups of water. Bring to simmer and season to taste with salt. Simmer gently for 10-15 minutes, then add soy or almond cream and bring back to simmer.
  • I prefer to place the roasted vegetables in a bowl and pour over the masala, as this helps the vegetables keep their lovely marinade. But you can add the vegetables to the large pan also, stir gently and then serve immediately.
  • Serve with steamed rice and soft chapatis or parathas, garnish with fresh coriander, and some freshly sliced cucumber, red onion and a wedge of lemon on the side.


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