Paneer - An Inseparable Part of Indian Cuisine
If you are an ardent cheese lover, then you must know about Indian cheese called 'paneer'. It is one of the main dishes for vegetarians. You can eat paneer as an appetizer, as snacks or cook it for a meal course. Paneer is a significant and tasty part of Indian cuisine and available at almost all the places and restaurants around the country. The best part is that you can make paneer all by yourself at home and enjoy its various delicacies.
Health Benefits of Paneer Intake
There are valid reasons why you should add more paneer to your diet.
- Paneer is rich in protein - Paneer is a good source of protein, especially for the vegetarians who do not get the much-needed protein part from meat. Protein removes weakness and makes the body fleshy. One hundred grams of paneer consists of about 18 grams of protein. A cube of paneer therefore makes a powerhouse of protein in the body.
- Keeps the hunger pang and diabetes spikes at bay - It releases energy slowly in the body and keeps you satiated for a longer time after eating it. Magnesium in paneer helps in maintaining and regulating blood sugar level and does not cause a spike to diabetes.
- Keeps bones and teeth healthy - Though it is a milk product, it is better than when it comes to nutrition. Calcium in paneer helps in building up healthy teeth and bones. Minerals and Vitamin D prevents gum disease and tooth infection. Paneer also prevents joint pains and ailments like osteoporosis.
- Other health benefits - Paneer keeps the heart healthy and prevents the growth of deadly-cells like cancer. It also helps to burn fat and lose weight. It improves digestion and prevents constipation. It also enhances the immune system, concentration and memory, and prevents anaemia and stress.
How to Make Paneer with Spoiled Milk
Thinking of the spoiled milk itself can ruin your appetite, and you can recognize spoiled milk instantly by looking at it. But sour milk can be utilized in many ways, especially making something out of it, just like in the old days. Paneer is widely known as 'chenna' in India and can be easily made at home from spoiled milk. To make homemade paneer from spoiled milk, you will need to go through the following easy steps.
Heat the milk and put lemon or vinegar in it and stir gently in one direction until the milk curdles fully.
Stirring the spoon in one direction will help to encourage the curd growth and form larger clumps.
Leave the mixture for a few minutes as soon as the whey separates from the curdled milk. You can pour some water at room temperature and let it sit for a minute.
Take a clean muslin or cheesecloth and a big bowl and keep the cloth over it. Then carefully pour the mixture over the cloth and squeeze the fabric gently to extract the liquid as much as possible from the paneer. It is said that if you leave the fabric and hang it, you will get softer cheese and if you squeeze it, you will get the harder one. It depends on your preference which kind of paneer you want. If you're going to fry, hard paneer is always preferable.
Next, press the paneer in the cloth with some heavy object and keep it for some time. This process will squeeze out all the excess liquid. If you want to use the paneer immediately, then you can skip the stage as it can make the paneer crumble up. The block of paneer is ready to refrigerate. You can chop it and keep in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for two to three days or freeze it for two months or do the same without chopping.
The Usual Way to Make Paneer at Home
If you get good quality paneer outside then why will you need to make it at home? The reason for doing that is homemade things are always healthy and hygienic. They are preservative-free and organic too. Paneer made at home is soft and delicious and so easy to make that you will not depend on shops for it while making any dish. You can make paneer in just 30 minutes. If you use whole fat milk, you will get the best taste of paneer. For curdling the milk, you will have to boil it, and then you can use lime juice curdle. If you want firm paneer, then try vinegar instead. With a muslin cloth strain the water by squeezing and keeping it like that for some time until the water drains completely. Refrigerate the paneer and use as needed.
Other Uses of Spoiled Milk
If you are using spoiled milk, you will need to understand if the milk is still good to use. If the milk is too old, becomes slimy, has a foul smell, starts to curdle or grow mould, it is best to discard it. But if it has a slightly acidic smell, you can use it in several ways. Use it as a salad dressing like Caesar, blue cheese or ranch. If you splash it in the stew, soup or casseroles, it can make the gravy thicker. You can substitute it with regular milk, buttermilk or curd in the recipe of pancakes, biscuits or cornbreads. Soak uncooked whole grain in it or marinade it to tenderize fish or meat. You can also add it in juices or smoothies (no lemon) to increase the nutritional or protein value. You can also add it in desserts to increase the nutritional value.
Some Homemade Paneer Dishes to Try
With delicious homemade paneer, you can make any recipes you want. The only thing you will need is tight paneer with no dripping water. After refrigerating, you can cut the paneer in cubes and use it in your cooking. Paneer tikka masala, samosa, dum paneer, Kadai paneer, paneer bhurji, paneer makhani biryani are some of the famous paneer recipes you can try to cook. Also making sandwiches with vegetables, sauces and paneer slices are one of the most craving options to eat paneer as raw ingredients. As it will be homemade so this is one of the healthiest vegetarian options for anyone who loves paneer.
All the recipes made from homemade paneer are exceptionally famous in India and can be made at home easily. The only thing you will need to keep in mind is that you have to use the paneer in two to three days after refrigerating as it can get the foul smell or lousy shape very quickly. Now you can enjoy the delicious and nutritious food made at home anytime.
Looking for That Perfect Paneer Recipe?
Preparing paneer at home is extremely simple and making paneer recipes is simpler than it. We’ve published many articles on the delicious paneer recipes you can find it in our food category. This category of Paneer Recipes is a must for all the Vegetarians and the Non-Vegetarians as well who savour Paneer too. Find conventional, restaurant-style, and unique Paneer recipes for everyone to try out. Those quick and easy paneer recipes by our chefs which are a delight for any occasion - be it a family dinner or when guests come home!