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Emigrated from America to New Zealand and never looked back. Couldn't have asked for a better husband, family & life!

PALAK PANEER

Sorry, it's been a few days...just been so very busy sorting out Thanksgiving plans for 30 people or so, and trying to assist with the school's upcoming "Lamb & Calf Day Gala", which coincidentally means I'll be baking again today for the cake stall on Saturday!

Anyway, this is a new recipe I had seen one version of and decided to give it a go and see if we liked it. Our daughter wasn't crazy about it, but she did well. I think I might put it into a pita bread next time.

Okay, Palak Paneer is an Indian spinach curry with homemade fried cheese. Palak means spinach and Paneer is cheese. This was my first time attempting to make palak paneer and it was quite fun (and tasty). I had no idea how easy it would be to make cheese at home – how REALLY easy!!! I love spinach and feta, Mediterranean style salads and things, so I thought this would be a good challenge for me.

This dish would ideally be served wrapped in a flatbread like naan or a pappadum. I quite liked the sort of "squeaky" texture of the fresh cheese and might opt to make some herbed cheese with some of my favourite flavours thrown in for future gatherings!


INGREDIENTS ~ PANEER:

2 Litres (8 Cups) Whole Milk
6 Tbsp Plain Unflavoured Yogurt
4 Tbsp Fresh Lime/Lemon Juice


DIRECTIONS:

First, whisk the yogurt and citrus juice together and set aside.

In a large stockpot, slowly and carefully bring the milk to a boil, stirring constantly.

Once boiling, immediately remove the milk from the heat and stir in the citrus/yogurt mixture.

You will immediately see the milk begin to form curds.

Now, return the pot to the heat and continue to boil until the curds stop developing, about 2 minutes.

Line a colander or sieve with cheesecloth and carefully pour the contents of the pot over the cheesecloth and allow it to drain away all of the clear liquid.

Allow the curds to drain until the cheesecloth is cool enough to handle and then twist the cloth as tightly as possible to remove any excess moisture that remains in the curds.

Put the wrapped curds in the refrigerator between two plates and weight it down with heavy cans (or other heavy items) to smash it into a flat disk about a centimetre or two thick for at least three hours to allow it solidify.

When you are ready to fix supper, unwrap the cheese, cube it, and brown it in a preheated pan that has been coated with cooking spray over medium high heat.


The paneer takes a bit of planning, but the results are so very worth it. I feel like a genuine Kiwi milkmaid or something and I didn’t have to pinch a teat or anything! Ha!

Now, for the curry dish…


INGREDIENTS ~PALAK PANEER:

500 Gms (about 1 Lb) Frozen Spinach, thawed
2 Cloves Crushed Garlic
1 Tsp Ginger, finely minced
1 Small Onion, diced
100 Gms Small Mushrooms, washed
(sliced and/or canned shrooms are okay)
1 Green Chilli, finely minced
1 Tsp Garam Masala
*Flaky Sea Salt
*Canola Oil Cooking Spray, or comparable substitute
1 Batch Paneer, cubed and browned (recipe above)

*Amounts vary to individual tastes.

DIRECTIONS:

First, combine thawed spinach, garlic, and ginger in a blender and puree then set it aside.

Now spray a large pan with a generous amount of canola spray and place over medium heat.

Add the onion and chilli and cook it until it begins to brown.

Now that the onion is beginning to brown, add the mushrooms and get them heating through.

Next, add the spinach puree and garam masala and continue to cook until all of the ingredients are heated through and well combined.

Lastly, add the cubed and browned paneer then salt to taste.

Serve with a flatbread such as naan, or with pappadums.

Enjoy.

2 Thoughts & Remarks:

Cheryl said...

Man oh man, you couldnt be more timely. I just had a curry last week with a substance in it I could not figure out and I later found it was that cheese you made! Delicious and squeaky too!

NuKiwi said...

Yeah - the cheese frys up REALLY well too, so it's a great addidtive or snack if seasoned properly. Without seasonings it's a bit plain/bland, but even just salt and/or pepper makes a big difference!