Paneer Cheese || How to make paneer cheese

Paneer Cheese || How to make paneer cheese

What is paneer cheese? Do you like paneer cheese? Can you make paneer cheese by yourself? Have you been desiring to make your own paneer cheese but don't know how to do so?
Paneer cheese, which is also known as Indian cottage cheese is a type of fresh cheese produced from cow or buffalo milk. Paneer cheese is basically made from fresh milk, preferably whole milk. This type of cheese is common in India. In fact, whenever I visit Indian restaurants, stir-fried paneer cheese is on top of the list of my favourite dishes to order. Paneer cheese is also known as Chhena, Poneer, Chhana or Fonir. It is one of the easiest cheeses to make at home. The interesting thing is that you can make paneer cheese and eat it right away unlike other types of cheeses that require culturing or aging. Poneer soft cheese is processed by curdling milk with either a lemon fruit juice, white vinegar, yoghurt or citric acid.
Homemade paneer cheese is pretty easy to make. All you require are:
1. Milk
2. Salt
3. Lemon or white vinegar, yogurt or citric acid. (The acidity from these items helps to separate the milk into curds and whey). You use either one of them. Don't use the four items together.
To make paneer cheese, start off by boiling some quantity of milk in a clean pot. Once the milk starts boiling, you can then pour a lemon juice or any of the aforementioned curdling items into it.
Adding the lemon juice into the boiling milk helps to separate the curds from the whey. The mixture is then poured into a cheesecloth or muslin cloth to drain. The resulting paneer is then rinsed in cold water to eradicate the lemon from it and improve the appearance and texture of the cheese. 
At this stage, the preparation of paneer can take various directions depending on how one wants to use it or for what purpose. Personally, at this point, I love to add some salt and mix in the salt into the paneer for a tasty outcome.
Afterwards, you place a hard object on top of the cheese to continue to drain any excess water. At no point should you try to squeeze out water from the paneer as this will harden it up. Once the cheese has drained for like 15 to 20 mins, place it on a flat surface and then use the palm of your hand to mould it into your desired shape. You can shape it by tying it in a cheesecloth and then it turns like tofu. Pressing the paneer for a shorter time (approximately 20 minutes) leads to softer and fluffier paneer. However, if you want a harder paneer, then be ready to spend more time pressing it. Place it in a fridge and allow it to stay for like 15 to 20 mins. This is to allow the paneer to set properly and to prevent it from breaking apart when you want to cut it up into cubes.
Uses of Paneer Cheese: Paneer cheese cubes can be used in stir-fries, for making curries, sauces, sweets etc. Indians usually cook paneer with peas or assorted veggies and they also stuff them in Paranthas (a flatbread). Paneer cheese can be marinated and grilled.

Meanwhile, watch this video tutorial on how to make Paneer Cheese!


Go ahead and make some paneer cheese for yourself, family and friends.


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