Indian Fresh Cheese
A Cook’s Staple
Paneer पनीर is a kind of Indian-style fresh Cheese. A cook’s staple, it appears in many dishes, notably in the standard Sag Paneer.
Paneer / पनीर
½ gallon Milk
2 to 3 tale spoons fresh Lemon Juice (the juice from one large Lemon)
Cheesecloth or similar
Heat there Milk to boiling in a large pot.
While the Milk is coming to the boil, juice the Lemon.
As soon as the Milk boils, add the Lemon Juice, 1 tablespoon at a time, stirring with a wooden spoon. Keep adding he Lemon Juice until the Milk completely separates out, forming tiny clumps, and the whey appears clear, as opposed to milk.
Line a strainer or colander with several thicknesses of cheesecloth. Set this in a large bowl. Pour the Milk into the strainer. Strain the Paneer clear of the whey, then let the Paneer remain in the cheesecloth in he strainer under a light weight. Or you could hang the cheesecloth from a faucet to drain off most of the remaining whey.
When it forms a solid piece, cut into small cubes with a very sharp knife. Refrigerate, covered.
How to use it: In a dish like Sag Paneer.
Sag Paneer could appear in a meal like one served by Mrs. Ratna Sarat, executive director of the Yak and Yeti Hotel in Kathmandu, Nepal..
In this Indian vegetarian meal, Mrs. Sarat had her cook prepare a Yellow Lentil dish, a Dal. This was served with Rice colored yellow with Turmeric and made with Raisins and Nuts. The meal included several vegetable dishes including Sag Paneer and salad.
The most common Indian Slad is made of raw sliced Onions, Tomatoes and Green Peppers with fresh Lime Juice for a dressing.
The meal was served with two kinds of bread: Phulka, an unleavened whole wheat rounds first baked on a hot griddle, then held directly in the lame so that they puff up; and Poori, similar to Phulka, except that it has a sheen and more flaky texture from being deep-fried to a puffed up state.
Dessert was a rice adding and candy, followed by Tea.
A similar meal could be designed in the same way, perhaps with a Chutney or Yogurt
with chopped Cucumbers.