How To Make Paneer (Indian Cottage Cheese)

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How To Make Paneer (Indian Cottage Cheese)

If you’ve never made cheese before you’ll be delighted by how easy it is to make traditional Indian cottage cheese, paneer, from just milk and lemon juice. Paneer simply means ‘cheese’ in Hindi as it’s the most common cheese throughout the Indian subcontinent, used for both sweet and savoury dishes. Usually homemade, paneer has a mild flavour and springy texture and softens without dissolving when it’s heated. You should get a 10-15% yield when making paneer (100-115g/litre of full cream milk). If you don’t get sufficient yield and the whey is still white rather than translucent, reheat it, add a little more lemon juice and make a second batch; just like making ricotta!

Makes about 110g

Ingredients
  • 1 litre full cream milk
  • 2½ tablespoons strained lemon juice (50ml)
  • Muslin, for draining
Method
  1. Line a sieve with muslin so that it hangs over the sides.
  2. Place it over a large bowl.
  3. Place milk in a saucepan and bring to the boil over medium heat.
  4. As it comes to the boil, stir in lemon juice then immediately remove from heat. Set aside for a few minutes.
  5. Ladle or pour into the cloth-lined sieve and leave to drain for a few minutes.
  6. Draw the ends of the muslin together and twist to tightly enclose the curds.
  7. Squeeze gently to remove some of the excess moisture.
  8. Flatten into a disc and place on a plate with the excess cloth to one side, place another plate on top, weigh down with a can or heavy jar and refrigerate for 30 minutes or so.
  9. Remove and discard muslin.
  10. The paneer is now ready to use or to be refrigerated in a sealed container or zip-lock bag for up to a week.

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How To Make Indian Paneer

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