Paneer is the most common type of cheese used in traditional cuisines from the Indian subcontinent. The use of paneer is more common in India, Nepal, Bangladesh and Pakistan. There are endless preparations using paneer and it’s really healthy too. Interestingly the Portuguese introduced the technique of “breaking” milk with acid to Bengal in the 17th century. Thus, Indian acid-set cheeses such as paneer and chena were first prepared in Bengal, under Portuguese influence.
300 Gm Paneer
Full cream milk
2 tbsp (or more)
Boil milk on high heat. I use 2% milk but you can use whichever milk you use regularly.
Let it cool for 5 minutes.
Slowly add lime juice drop by drop and keep stirring. Milk will start separating. Once you see greenish water, the curdling is complete. Do not put all the lime in one go because that will make the paneer harder.
Wait for about 5 minutes. Stir occasionally.
Line a sieve with muslin cloth and pour milk in it. Run it under cold water but do not disturb it too much. This is the time the paneer starts to lump together and disturbing may prevent that.
Let it sit for about 1 hour.
Turn it over on a cutting board and cut or mash as desired. Home made paneer is ready.
Don’t set the paneer very thin otherwise it will not be soft when used in curries.
Paneer is a fresh cheese common in South Asia, especially in India. It is an un-aged, acid-set, non-melting farmer cheese. In eastern India its crumbly and moist form (cheese curd or acid-set cottage cheese) is called chena.