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Forum Thread - Help me to make cheese

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Aveni, on 3/3/2006 06:39am

On 02/03/06, Hussain Al Aveny wrote:

Hi there

I m from India exactly from Hyderabad .

I went through your site and it was really fantastic website spcially carrot ka halwa.

Now i m intersted in making Cheese but what i find is Rennet the problem. From where can i get rennet in hyderabad is it available in medical hall or regular stores

and what does it calledin hindi or urdu?

And yes i found one method of making cheese in your great site.You said appling lemon juice?so whats the difference between using lemon juice and Rennet?

Waiting for your replay

Thanks in advance


Mamta, on 3/3/2006 06:43am

Hello Aveni

I don't know what Renner is called in Hindi.

From Web dictionary, "it is an extract from the membranes of calves' stomachs which contains rennin, an enzyme that aids in coagulating milk or separating curds from whey. Rennet-like enzymes, also used commercially, are produced by selected fungi and bacteria."

Vegetarian Rennet is "produced by fermentation of the fungus Mucor miehei. Vegetarian cheese may also be made using a rennet from the bacteria Bacillus subtilis or Bacillus prodigiosum."

I only make paneer cheese. I will post your question on the Forum on my website, perhaps someone else will be able to tell you. Otherwise, your best bet is ti get hold a book on cheese making or search the web.

Lemon/vinegar is used to make India paneer because Rennet is mostly non-vegetarian and comes from a cow's stomach at that! Can you imagine Hindus ever eating anything that comes from the sacred cow? Even if vegetarian rennet became widely available in India, it will be far too expensive, whereas, lemons and vinegar are dirt cheap!


AskCy, on 8/3/2006 03:38pm

Still haven't got around to making my own cheese yet.. its the cloth bit that I can't source.. would a really clean tea-towel work?

So warm the milk to nearly boiling (but don't let it boil)..

then do I add the lemon juice and let it cool..or let it cool then add?..

If (as I want to do) I want the cheese to be more of a block, do I put it in the cloth and press it while warm or do I wait until cool?

Do I need to add salt? (as cheese is often salty)


Mamta, on 8/3/2006 05:37pm

Hello Steve

I hope yu will make the paneer, it is cheaper and fresher.

You can use an old kitchen towel, provided it is not too rough. You need it smooth, so that the cheese doesn't get caught in it's texture. Don't you have and old, men's handkerchief? That will do very well for a litre or two milk.

Heat the milk to boiling and then turn the heat down, so it is still simmering. If you add lemon to colder milk, it doesn't curdle easily. Now add lemon/vinegar, a spoon at a time, until milk curdles. Let it simmer for a few seconds, until a translucent whey separates.

Place your hankie in a colander, pour the milk over it. Once the whey has drained fully, pull together the corners of the hankie and tie the cheese into a loose ball. Place on a draining board and leave it to press with a pan full of water sitting on top of it for weight. Leave for an hour or so. Longer you leave it, harder it is. Good luck!


AskCy, on 8/3/2006 06:50pm

I am going to give it a go.. one way or another...

will report back when done..

AskCy, on 9/3/2006 01:02pm

Well I've give it a little experiment today...

Frist thing I've noticed.. It takes a lot of milk for a little cheese !

To test I used 500ml of boiled milk

Then added lemon juice (all the time stirring) so it split/curdled

Drained off the water (in a teatowel)

Squeezed as much moisture out in the teatowel and then put it between 2 dishes (to be honest not much came out at this point)

Allowed it to cool (forced it to cool under cold water to be exact, just so I could see if it had worked and take the pictures) I've made it a solid type of cheese rather than cottage cheese type.

And then just to create an aide-memoire to doing it again

Haven't tasted it yet.. thought I should leave it to mature a little...

Mamta, on 10/3/2006 06:30am

Loooks good Steven, I have saved all the pictures.

I hope it was fine after pressing. You can use unpressed/crumbled paneer to make Paneer stuffed vegetables, many desserts/sweets, Paneer keema (mince), paneer balls etc., etc. Just put paneer in the search window and see!


AskCy, on 10/3/2006 07:44pm

I've tried it and its a bit plane .. but like I said I didn't add anything like salt and used fully skimmed milk.

It does seem to have gone slightly more yellow on colour today (as you might expect a cheese to look as its aged ? )

would using semi-skimmed or full fat milk give it a different flavour? (thinking the fat content must add to the flavour)

Mamta, on 11/3/2006 09:06am

Hello Steven

To make best cheese that is soft, use blue top milk. I have amended the recipe to include this.

Paneer cheese is a little bland in taste, though I love it. Remember, it is fresh cheese, with no maturing involved. No salt needs to be added. Usually, it is cooked with spices, salt, vegetables, batter etc. Try deep frying some cubed fresh cheese and eat it with a sause/chutney. It is lovely! Add a few cubes to the Peas Pilaf;

In old days, before you could buy it ready-made in UK, I used to make paneer from a full crate of milk at a time, and freeze portions. My milk-man used to tease me, "are you having a milk bath again today then"?


AskCy, on 12/3/2006 02:20pm

Milk baths are supposed to be very good for the skin... LOL

I presume "blue top" is Full fat (whole milk) as it changes depending on which farm/dairy/supplier you get your milk from.

I might try adding a couple of bayleaves or some peppercorns in during the actual making...

Mamta, on 12/3/2006 02:46pm

That is a good idea! You can add cumin, chopped chillies, chopped coriander leaves, mint, garlic, red peppers etc. etc. Sky is the limit. add and mix it before you press the cheese.

You can buy some thse variations from india shops, so why not make them at home.

Since you are agood cook, why not try making a cheese sweet like rasagullas, cheese calls in sugar syrup, they are yummy!

I keep typing wrong letters, the keyboards here in India are slightly different!!


AskCy, on 13/3/2006 09:50pm

(you know when I'm abroad and can't find a letter or icon on the keyboard, I look for it within other text on the board I'm on and copy and paste it)

I haven't quite mastered cheese yet.. not quite ready to move onto making things with it... maybe one day..

glenys, on 28/3/2006 10:51pm


Thank you for your photos attached to this thread. They are certainly very clear and will be very useful. I have always been hesitant to make paneer but now I will give it a try.


Gill the Painter, on 3/4/2006 10:30am

I was just reading this thread & the only contribution (my first here) I can make is to go to your local hardware store - or even Robert Dyas.

There is always a cooking/utensils aisle, pots pans pastry cutters ... and cloths for straining cheese are about £3.

I would buy two as the double thickness prevents the mixture oozing during the straining process.

AskCy, on 31/7/2006 05:43pm

This topic might help with the Paneer question

caroline, on 1/8/2006 06:40pm

Don't throw the the liquid away when you make the cheese - use it when you need liquid when making a curry etc - freeze it if you have to.

syed, on 4/8/2006 11:46pm

This thread reminded me of our visit to my brother-in-law.

He offered to make Gulaab Jamun, But the milk didm not break

even when a whole bottle of lemon juice had been used.

It was long life.

Mamta, on 5/8/2006 07:37am

Hello Sayed

You brother in-law must have added lemon juice to cold milk. You only need a couple of spoons to a liter.

Anyway, Gulab Jamuns do not need paneer, unless he was making Kala Jams.

For paneer, follow either Paneer making or Steven's (AskCy) step by step guide further up in this thread.


Mongoose, on 22/8/2006 08:39am

Hi - I started making paneer at home recently because I don't live near anywhere that sells it. I use skimmed milk for mine because I don't have a very high fat tolerance, and it works all right but it is a bit crumbly, even though I press it well. This doesn't really matter, since the saag paneer still tastes just as good. :-)

I really appreciate all the suggestions here, especially the one about adding spices. I think I'll try that next time!

AskCy, on 22/8/2006 08:35pm

Glad its worked out well !

I was surprised, its not as hard as you might think. I'm sure I wouldn't have tried to make my own without this site to ask for help and directions.

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