Paneer cheese is a non-aged cheese that is common in India. It’s very easy and quick to make! You can have delicious home-made cheese in 30 minutes, with only a few ingredients. Because this cheese is not made using rennet; it’s Vegetarian; although not Vegan because it’s made using milk. What’s very interesting about Paneer cheese is that it doesn’t melt, so you can use it in some dishes as the main protein. I will include some links to some very delicious recipes at the end of this tutorial.
Here is what you need:
Ingredients (you can double or half this, or whatever amount you want, but this is the base):
8 cups of whole milk
1/4 cup white vinegar
1/4 cup lemon juice
(or you can use a 1/2 cup of either; but this is what has worked best for me)
salt to taste
A large wide pot
A plate, and something slightly heavy like a big can of food or a cast iron pan to flatten the cheese afterward.
1) Bring the milk to a rolling boil over medium heat; stirring frequently to prevent scalding.
2) It’s beneficial to have cute helpers!
3) Once the milk is at a rolling boil, reduce the heat to low, and pour in the lemon juice and vinegar a little at a time, and stir. You will see the curds separate from the whey. Stir for two or three minutes until fully separated.
4) Meanwhile, spread your cheesecloth over a colander and place in the sink; or over a bowl if you choose to save your whey to use later. Pour the curds and whey through this; and rinse with cold water 5 or six times which reduces the lemony / vinegary taste. Add salt to taste. Sorry my cheesecloth is a weird color; I don’t use bleach and I got some food coloring on it at one point in time…
5) Once the cheese has cooled enough to squeeze, twist up the cheesecloth and squeeze out the excess liquid. I like to rinse a couple more times also, and squeeze.
6) Leave cheese in cloth, once squeezed, and shape into a disc shape. Put on a plate. Put a heavier object on top such as a can of food, or a cast iron pan, and put into the fridge for 20 minutes. This will harden the cheese.
7) Unwrap and enjoy!
I had some for breakfast with tomatoes, and I put salt and pepper on top 🙂 I also decided after I took this picture to add some avocado. It was so good!
And as promised; here is a link to some recipes that use paneer cheese in them that you can make! It’s wonderful! I highly recommend Saag Paneer especially.