|1 litre||Whole milk|
|3 tbsp||Lemon juice|
What do you need to make paneer????
2. Lemon juice
3. Cheese cloth or muslin cloth or clean thin kitchen towel.
5. Small Sieve would be wonderful but not really necessary.
How to make Paneer????
Take a heavy bottomed pot and warm the milk. When its about to boil, get ready with the lemon juice. When it actually boils pour the lemon juice immediately and stir gently until the curd separates. Here milk literally spits into 2 forms 1. a transparent liquid (whey) and 2. soft lumps of curd which is nothing but cheese. Everything happens very quickly, so be vigilant and wise, use a big pot to avoid a mess all over the stove.
Wrap a cheese cloth over a colander and place a bowl underneath. Pour the curled milk and strain. Do not discard the whey, use it for future prparations.
Collect the curd, run it under cold water for a couple of times, to give it quick rinse inorder to get rid of the lemonly smell.
Twist the gathered curd in the cheese cloth to strain and squeeze out, as much liquid as possible. After this stage you can either tie a knot and suspend the cheese, from a sturdy kitchen cabinet knob, placing a bowl underneath to collect all the extra liquid by squeezing gently or do as explained below.
I would like to place the cheese with cloth in a sieve and press out the whey with the help of a heavy object. Leave it for about an hour in the fridge, this way some more liquid would be released, just discard it. I pressed mine this way, as it seemed easier, but, you can always use your imagination and come out with something better.
Remove the cheese from the sieve (will look in circular shape) and cut into small cubes, but edges might tend to crumble and thats OK.
Voila!! you have fresh home made cheese from scratch. Use it the same day or refidgerate for upto 3 days. Fry the paneer pieces with little ghee or oil, if you wish to preserve little longer.
Paneer sold at Indian stores looks much firmer(bcos it includes preservatives & corn starch) and whiter (as its mostly made from buffalo’s milk), a pack of 500 grams could cost around $6 to $7. This recipe yields about 250 grams (approx) of Paneer and might cost only a dollar and little energy.
Cheese cloth is available in most American grocery chains, look in the pots and pans section or under the bottling section where they sell glass jars, cans and lids. Usually each pack may have about 2 yards @ $2.
Whey is very nutritious, excellant source of protiens, vitamins and minerals. Use this while preparing chapatti instead of plain water or add as a stock for any gravy type dish.