I love indian food. One of my favourite indian dishes is Saag Paneer - a spinach and indian cheese dish that is super delicious and pretty simple. On my recent Trader Joe's trip I picked up their frozen saag paneer and was super impressed with the amount of paneer cheese in it. Paneer is a really mild cheese that normally has a squeaky/rubbery, chewy texture. It's really delicious pan fried and added to lots of dishes (salads, soups, curries, wraps, sandwiches) and can even be snacked on with fruit and sweeter dishes.
I had recently made Ricotta cheese at home and realized that Paneer cheese is really similar to Ricotta in how it's made so I gave it a try. The texture of the cheese depends on the amount of pressure applied to shape it and the fat content of the milk used.
Here are the basic steps and then some tips at the bottom for changing the texture and taste of the cheese to fit your dish.
I'm not too sure on the shelf life of this cheese so I usually make it for a particular dish and use it up pretty fast.
I like my cheese on the saltier side. Be aware that without salt this cheese is very, very mild.
I have read that adding a tablespoon or so of flour to the curds and kneading them before squeezing them into shape will make the cheese more rubbery and dense - I have yet to try this.
I'm also interested in adding flavours to this cheese before it is shaped - garlic, rosemary etc would probably be delicious.