Paneer making in steps summarised.
1. First mix lemon juice in half a cup of hot water and keep
2. Boil the milk in a heavy bottomed over
medium-high heat. Stir frequently so that the milk doesn't burn.
When the milk comes to a boil, add the lemon juice
slowly and stir the milk gently. The milk will start to split and the curd will separate from the whey. Switch off the gas.
When the fat has separated from the
whey, drain using a cheesecloth or muslin cloth. Save the whey for other uses like kneading chapati dough.
5. Wrap the curd in a cheese cloth, rinse under cold
water, drop some ice cubes to stop the heat. and squeeze well. This will remove the sourness from the lemon.Keep squeezing out as much water as possible and then hang it on a tap or a door handle till water completely drains off.
6. To take out the excess water squeeze the
cloth, or press the wrapped paneer under a heavy object like a stone for about one hour. I usually place a heavy bottomed pan on top of the cloth and it drains well and gives a good slab of firm paneer. This method is good for making paneer cubes .
7. To check if sufficient water is out of the paneer, take
a little piece of paneer on your palm and rub with your fingers. After rubbing
the paneer , you should be able to make a firm but
8. If the paneer is too dry, add a few drops of water,
using the water squeezed from the paneer.
I prefer to keep the paneer in the fridge for 15 minutes for it to chill well and will be easy to handle.
9. Once the paneer is drained, place on a dry, clean
surface and knead the paneer for 3-4 minutes until the paneer is rolled into smooth soft dough.
How to make Ras Malai
Take out the cooked paneer balls/ Rosogollas from the syrup and squeeze
them lightly,and keep aside to make rasmalai
To make the rabdi/ thickened sweet saffron infused milk sauce
Bring the milk to a boil in a deep, thick-bottomed non-stick pan on high heat
Lower heat to medium and cook, stirring, till it reduces to three-fourth its
original volume. Scrape off the cream that will collect on the sides. Let it cook for few minutes. Add the cardamom and mix in. Garnish with sliced
almonds and pistachios and strands of saffron. Serve the Rasmalai chilled.
For stove top cooking method of paneer balls.
1. If you are preparing sugar syrup in an open vessel, then collect the scum which floats on top after the sugar dissolves.
2. When the syrup begins to boil add the paneer balls . Add some flour-water mixture. About half teaspoon of flour mixed with water will be sufficient. The syrup will froth.
3. Keep agitating the syrup so
that the balls do not stick to the bottom of the pan.
4. Slowly drizzle half a cup of water along the sides of the pan every few minutes so that the syrup does not thicken.
Continue cooking for fifteen
minutes or till the paneer balls spring back when pressed. Handle with care as they are still fragile and likely to crumble.
Ras malai can also be prepared by using store bought cottage cheese or Ricotta.