Homemade Herbed Paneer Cheese
Epicurious March 2015
Photo by Chelsea Kyle, food Styling by Katherine Sacks
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Serve this take on the traditional Indian fresh cheese with olive oil, salt, and pepper for a simple yet impressive appetizer. The tofu-like texture also works well folded into soups or curries or… Read more
YIELD: 6 as an appetizer
ACTIVE TIME: 15 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 2 hours 10 minutes
- 8 cups whole milk
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 3/4 cup distilled white vinegar
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh herbs (such as parsley, basil, and/or oregano
Slowly heat milk and cream in a 6-quart pot over medium heat, stirring occasionally to avoid scalding, until mixture foams and reaches 190°F, 25–30 minutes. Add vinegar and 1 1/2 tsp. salt, stir once, and continue to cook, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat and let rest until mixture separates into clumps of milky white curds and whey, about 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, line a large sieve with 2 layers of cheesecloth and place it over a large bowl. Using a slotted spoon, carefully transfer curds into strainer, letting whey collect in bowl. Strain until curds begin to firm up, 15–20 minutes, then transfer curds to a medium bowl with slotted spoon. Discard whey or reserve for another use.
Fold chopped herbs and remaining 1 Tbsp. salt into curds. Transfer both layers of cheesecloth to a large plate and spoon herbed curds into the center. Use the back of a spoon to flatten curds into a round 3/4-1″ thick. Gather ends of cheesecloth and wrap tightly around curds. Place a second plate on top and use a can or other heavy object to weigh it down. Refrigerate at least 1 hour or up to overnight.
Remove cheesecloth and place pressed cheese onto a cutting board. Cut into 1″ cubes and serve or use as desired.
Do ahead: Cheese can be made, wrapped in plastic, and refrigerated up to 4 days.