Then, in 1998, T S Chandrashekhar, took over as the Municipal Commissioner, and brought about major changes in a mere run of 10 months. (Yay! More power to such men!). He gave Thane its change over – Footpaths, concrete roads, in other words – he gave it life! He had ordered the demolition of 20,000 unauthorised constructions and encroachments coming in the way of public projects. Read more here. Now except for heavy cream I find all other things here – There is even a probability of a planetarium nearby!
In those olden times I missed fresh paneer – I had to get it all the way from the Aarey booth at Andheri, where I worked then. It was because of the unavailability and because I don’t like Amul’s frozen malai paneer that I tried making paneer at home. Now I find it easy and it seems silly to have thought it difficult and OMG how I used to pine for it! (lessons of adversity)
The post in my series of ‘food essentials’ is for all those people who have not cooked much and have just got into it. I have tried to explain with pictures to clear up any doubts. Hope someone finds it useful!
Paneer is a milk product also known as cottage cheese as it was usually made in cottages from any milk leftover after making butter. it is a case of a good thing made from leftovers! Paneer is made in different ways for different preparations.
For sandesh where you need extremely soft paneer it is best to curdle it using a cup of plain curd/yogurt for a litre of cow’s milk/skimmed milk. For all Bengali sweets toned milk is the best choice for making paneer.
If you need it for a mughlai dish or something royal use full cream milk (Buffalo’s) and curdle it with citric acid, half a lime or vinegar for a litre of milk. Cow’s milk is good too but it will not be as creamy as the former. This produces a slightly crumbly textured paneer which sets better than the one curdled with curd!! This is from my experience – so if yours is different from mine please do not hesitate to offer your views in the comments form!!
Recipe: Paneer ~ Cottage cheese homemade
Ingredients for paneer (As in gravies and curries)
Full cream Buffalo milk – 1 litre
White synthetic vinegar – 5tbsp.
Water – 4 to 5 tbsp. to dilute the vinegar
Salt – To be added to the boiled milk
Option 3 : Use 1 to 2 cups of whisked curd/yogurt instead of vinegar or lime.
Option 4 : Dilute citric acid crystals in water and use the same quantity as vinegar instead of it.
1. Boil the milk till it comes up. Add salt and mix.
4. Strain the curdled mixture through a big – eyed sieve and wash under running tap water to get rid of the sour smell of vinegar or citric acid or lime. Curd does not leave a smell usually unless it has turned sour.