While preparing lunch today I made another batch of paneer. To avoid disaster it is advisable to be present in the kitchen while heating milk. I am famous for multitasking while cooking, and the other activities are sometimes in locations other than the kitchen. The again, it is not unusual for milk to scald or boil over while I am standing right next to it while busy with other food preparation or preoccupied with my own wandering thoughts.
I won’t repeat the procedure for making paneer in this post as I have covered that previously. This time I did a couple of things differently. I added powdered skim milk to the 2% milk I was using to increase the yield of cheese, and in addition to lemon juice to curdle the milk I used ume plum vinegar and brown rice vinegar.
Ume plum vinegar is fruity and salty, and brown rice vinegar is salty with an earthy quality I like. These vinegars gave the cheese a subtle flavor which is typically lacking in paneer. I like the idea of paneer having a flavor of its own rather than relying on the infusion of other flavors in a dish.
Some people like to rinse the curds to get rid of the taste of the curdling agent, but I don’t mind a slight tanginess. In this instance especially, I wanted to preserve the flavors of the vinegars in the cheese.
This is a cheese worthy of being eaten on its own without a lot of meddling. How I use the paneer will be the subject of the next post.