“Age is something that doesn’t matter, unless you are cheese” – Luis Bunuel
In this case, the age would be ‘newborn’ because paneer is a fresh cheese. I stand to be corrected but to my knowledge, paneer is the only Indian cheese. Paneer is a lot like ricotta but made solely with milk and not cream. It’s light and creamy and my favourite way to eat it is with palaak (spinach) and the warm spiciness of garam masala.
I got into a frenzy about eating Indian food on Sunday.
Because Even though I was a little muzzy from the night before, I have always believed that cooking for oneself is the way to nurture oneself and so I set off on making my Sunday lunch dreams come true.
2L full cream milk
6 Himalayan salt crystals
Bring milk to scalding point with salt. Thats the point when you can see bubbles at the edge of the pot, steam raising, but not boiling yet.
Take the pot off the heat and squeeze the lemon into the pot of hot milk. Be careful not to squeeze the lemon seeds into the milk. Stir the pot with a wooden spoon and set aside for 10-15minutes. In that time, the curds and whey (yes, intsy-wintsy-spider style) will separate. The curds will be the lumpy milk solids and the whey is a sour-looking liquid that will separate to the top of the pot.
Ready a strainer or sieve lined with muslin cloth or a new kitchen cloth. Cut your piece of string before you pour the curds and whey into the cloth.
Pour the liquid into the muslin. Tie the cloth closed with the string and suspend. The curds needs to hang to allow the excess liquid to drain off ±45minutes. Once most of the liquid has drain off, place the muslin cloth with the paneer in it between two flat surfaces – a dinner plate weighed down with a side plate and a pestle will do. Once the curds have drained dry, cut into squares and add to your curry sauce.