Sharing very easy and simple recipe of very soft home made paneer, Indian cheese| Cottage cheese | Chhena
Life is all about learning and keep experimenting new things. Benjamin Franklin this quote "An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest" is one of my favorite quote.
I remember when I started making paneer, initially, I use to curdle milk with vinegar and lemon, but as said, we keep learning and keep experimenting, as tried all options to prepare paneer, now i am very confident to say that with curd we can actually make best quality Paneer.
If you are looking for very soft and best quality paneer
- Use milk with good fat content.
- Curdle milk with Curd or Curd Whey.
- Don't press very hard and don't keep weight on it for very long period
- After removing weight keep the paneer in refrigerator for at least 10-15 minutes.
- Never add salt in the beginning, when milk starts boiling. (Result will be salt will affect the protein in the milk, it could interfere with calcium ions and impede the curdling process.). I have image to share with you as when salt is added before start of curdling process, being inquisitive, I keep experimenting, to see the result.
As you can see the quality of paneer, as expected, not proper binding and paneer turn out hard and rubbery.
My observation when we curdle milk with curd, it gives us more soft texture paneer then going with lemon.
I am very confident with my paneer recipe, as being vegetarian, we consume lot of paneer and in month's time, I am making 8-10 times. For me, making paneer is like routine work and more so I enjoy the whole process of making soft, hygienic and best quality paneer.
Another important thing, which is out of box, about the water (whey) which is left after making paneer is very good source of protein, minerals and calcium and good for natural cleaning of digestive system and colon health.
Even that left over water (whey) you can use for making wheat dough and make soft roti.
✒ 1 ltr Milk
When milk is about to boil, add curd, stir constantly, adding curd should be gradual process add one by one spoon and within 8-10 seconds, you can see milk is curdling, if process of curdling not started add little more curd or one drop of lemon juice, in case curd is not working for you..
(When whey is clear, it means milk is fully curdled.)
Now when milk is fully curdle we require colander, paneer making container and heavy weight to give firm shape.
Check these images to get better idea. Here I am using this container for making paneer, this you will get easily in utensil shop in India.
If you want to use next day, then add little water and keep in air tight container as this helps to keep the paneer in same texture.
(Recipe images replaced with new images July 30, 2014)