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Indian Cookery : How To Make Paneer

Updated on March 1, 2011

Paneer Cubes Made At Home


What Is Paneer

Paneer also referred to as cottage cheese is native to India. A versatile dairy product, it is known as panir or cheena (in Bengal). Made from milk with 2%-8% fat content, it is basically the curd separated from the whey. A good paneer is springy to touch, white and firm enough to be cut into cubes, or rolled into balls. Milk is artificially curdled by adding souring agents such as lime juice or vinegar while boiling, and then strained through a clean muslin cloth. A weight is placed over this to drain out any remaining whey water for a couple of hours and then your paneer is ready to use in dishes you like. Paneer has no taste or flavor of its own and therefore picks up the flavors of the masalas in which it is either marinated or cooked.

Paneer is an important source of protein for the vegetarians.

Paneer is used in most North Indian dishes. The Punjabis are known the world over for their delicious paneer dishes and these are available in Indian restaurants throughout the world. Always served with a dollop of butter the gravies are mouthwatering. Shahi paneer, paneer makhani, paneer jalfrezi,mutter paneer, kadai paneer are some of the dishes made using paneer. Sometimes this paneer is made into balls(kofta) with vegetable stuffing and cooked in a masala based gravy and are called paneer kofta curry.

Soft paneer is the basis for several Bengali sweets such as rasgulla,rasmalai, sandesh,etc, where the paneer is rolled by hand to form little balls and cooked in sugar syrup or milk or mixed with khoya and dried fruits,with various colourings in different flavors.

Dishes such as paneer chilli, tandoori panner, paneer tikka are served as starters.

Delicious Paneer Dishes

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Butter Paneer, Palak Paneer,Kadai Paneer Palak PaneerKadai PaneerPaneer BadamiPaneer TikkaPaneer MakhaniPaneer Pakora
Butter Paneer, Palak Paneer,Kadai Paneer
Butter Paneer, Palak Paneer,Kadai Paneer
Palak Paneer
Palak Paneer
Kadai Paneer
Kadai Paneer
Paneer Badami
Paneer Badami
Paneer Tikka
Paneer Tikka
Paneer Makhani
Paneer Makhani
Paneer Pakora
Paneer Pakora

How To Make Soft Paneer

  • Boil 2 liters of fresh whole milk.
  • While continuing to boil, add 2 tablespoons of vinegar, curd or lime juice or citric acid and stir well. If using citric acid, dissolve it in 2 tbsp water first and then add to the boiling milk.
  • Milk will curdle and it must be removed from heat and set aside for at least 5 minutes.
  • Take a muslin or cotton cloth and spread it in a colander. Place this colander in your sink.
  • Pour the curdled milk into the muslin cloth. Whey water will be drained leaving the curdled milk. (You may collect this whey water in another vessel to be used for kneading parathas or rotis.)
  • Lift up the ends of the cloth and tie it into a tight knot.
  • When all the water has drained, place a heavy vessel or any heavy weight over the cloth- covered mass for a couple of hours or so.
  • Remove the cloth and see the paneer or cottage cheese thus formed is soft and has taken the shape of the vessel that was kept on top of it.
  • Now, the paneer is ready for use in a variety of delicious spicy dishes as well as delectable sweetmeats. 200 gram paneer is obtained from 2 liters milk.

How To Make Paneer At Home

Popular And Delicious Ready-To-Eat Paneer Dishes


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    • Vacation Trip profile image

      Susan 4 years ago from India

      Paneer is one of my favorite food item. Making Paneer and keeping it at home is so useful that whenever we want we can make delicious dishes out of these paneer. I have also written a hub on how to make paneer. Thank you for sharing.

    • jojokaya profile image

      jojokaya 7 years ago from USA

      Thanks for sharing this recipe. I love Indian foods and gonna try this one. Awesome hubs

    • gr82bme profile image

      gr82bme 7 years ago from USA

      So cool. Thank you.