Originally Posted by Welshrarebit
I use to make paneer/farmers cheese at my last job. Similar to your recipe without the spices and we used lemon juice as the acid.
I make paneer cheese too, here's the simple recipe that I use,
- 1/2 gallon whole milk (not ultra pasteurized)
- 4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Pour the milk in a large pot over medium-high heat. Stir occasionally to prevent the milk from scorching on the bottom.
Heat the milk for 10 to 15 minutes until it just barely begins to simmer, You don’t want a rigorous boil. The temperature of the milk will be right around 180 F just as bubbles start to form.
Slowly add the lemon juice, stirring gently as you do. Turn off the heat and let the milk set for several minutes. It will separate into curds and whey, with a thick layer of curds forming on the surface.
Line a colander with 2 layers of cheesecloth, long enough to hang over the sides of the colander.
Gently pour the curds and whey through the cheesecloth lined colander. If you want to save the whey, put a bowl under the colander first.
Let the curds drain for a few minutes. Sprinkle 1/4 teaspoon of salt or more to taste. Add any other spices of herbs you may want. Gently stir to mix. Gather the corners of the cheesecloth together to form a bundle around the curds. Twist and squeeze gently to remove excess moisture.
Secure the cheesecloth in a tight bundle. Place the bundle of cheese between two plates (a rimmed plate is ideal, to catch the whey) and set a weight on top. If you're concerned about the shape of the cheese, now is the time to form it into a nice looking rectangle or other shape of your choice.
Let the cheese set on the counter for 1 hour. Drain the liquid that gathers once or twice. After 1 hour, remove the top plate and weights and drain the liquid. Ready to serve!