Sunday, November 09, 2008

Paneer (Page 577)

RECIPE #861

  • Date: Monday, November 3, 2008 -- 8pm
  • Location: Bloomington, IN
  • Kitchen: My Apartment
  • Dining Companion: Matty
  • Recipe Rating: A-

This past week I had a little more time than usual (amazing how much time it frees up to not be running 5 days a week!), so I decided to finish some of the recipes that I made component recipes of a few weeks ago. In particular, a couple weeks ago I made some ghee. That recipe took only a few minutes (which was why I selected it), but it was a component of a palak paneer recipe that has an Active Time of 2 hours. This paneer recipe is another component of that recipe (which I will blog about soon). My special gentleman loves paneer (and in particular palak paneer) so he was very excited about this venture. Paneer is a fresh Indian cheese. Making it was extremely simple: I brought a lot of whole milk to a boil, then dumped in a bunch of lemon juice. The milk began to curdle, and I let it sit for a few minutes to separate. Then I poured the milk and lemon mixture through cheesecloth, and rinsed off the curds that remained. I then gathered the cheesecloth and wrung out the extra liquid. I formed the cheese into a disk (still wrapped in cheesecloth), and weighted it down to get out any excess liquid. Once the liquid had been pressed out I put the disk of cheese in the fridge until I used it in the palak paneer. I forgot to take a picture of the whole disk -- I started cubing it to make the palak paneer and realized halfway through that I needed a picture. That's why it looks a bit odd in the photo above. This recipe produced nice paneer. It had a good texture, and a mild flavor. It held up well when fried (which was important for the palak paneer recipe). I was very happy with it. My special gentleman kept sneaking pieces of it off the cutting board while I was cubing it, so I think he liked it too!

Here is the recipe.

Yesterday morning I headed from South Bend, Indiana to Chicago to work with Vigleik. It should have been about a 90 minute drive, but I got lost leaving South Bend (surprise, surprise -- I am chronically lost!), and then encountered a bad roadside fire situation in Chicago which slowed things down. I made it eventually though, and Vigleik and I put in a very solid day of work. There is a paper that we have been working on for a while, and we were both anxious to get it done. So I insisted that I wouldn't leave his apartment yesterday until we finished! Obviously, in order for that to be realistic, it was already almost complete. But there is always a lot of editing/checking/fine tuning to be done at the end, and if you let it drag out, it will! We were determined yesterday, though, so we sat in his living room, working/editing/typing, until it was complete. We took a few little breaks to eat and play with Henrik (V and Shihchi's baby), but mainly we stayed focused on the task at hand. It was a Saturday well spent!

Today I am back in South Bend, working in the hotel room until my special gentleman's conference finishes up, and then it is back to Bloomington for a night!

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