A few days ago I made fresh Paneer at home after a very long time. My initial thoughts after taking my first bite of homemade Paneer and watching my kids enjoy homemade Paneer was that I will never buy store brand again. Okay that was wishful thinking but I know I will try to make it at home as often as I can because fresh homemade Paneer tastes so creamy and so delicious that you can just eat it plain.
Paneer is Indian cheese made from curdling milk with an acid and separating the whey and the curds. It is extremely popular in Indian cuisine and is the star ingredient in dishes such as ‘Saag Paneer’ or ‘Paneer Tikka Masala’. Paneer is a great source protein; we rotate it in our home with tofu and beans (lentils) as vegetarian protein sources. My kids love it in any form and you can quickly make any dish using Paneer. At home we use it for breakfast, lunch, dinner and dessert recipes!
For breakfast I will use it as a substitute for eggs and cheese to make scrambled Paneer, or grilled Paneer toast. For lunch and dinner we use it in curries or BBQ it.
You probably already know of my love for Puff Pastry. Here’s the newest way we have been eating Paneer at home. Puff Pastry Pizza with veggies and fresh homemade Paneer. This dish took about 20 mins including 5 mins of active hands on time.
1 8×8 inch puff pastry sheet (I used Trader Joe’s Artisan Puff Pastry)
2 medium zucchini
1 cup corn kernels
2 cups fresh homemade Paneer or 2 cups cubed Paneer
1 tbsp cooking oil
Salt to taste
1) Thaw the puff pastry for 5 mins (per packaging instruction).
2) While the puff pastry is thawing. Dice the zucchini and tomatoes.
3) Heat cooking oil in a frying pan on medium heat and add the diced Zucchini and corn and sauté for 2 mins.
4) Add the diced tomatoes and sauté for about 3 mins. Add salt per taste.
5) Remove the veggies from the fire.
6) On the thawed puff pastry, place the Paneer and the veggies till the puff pastry is covered.
7) Bake in the oven at 400F for 15 minutes or till the puff pastry turns golden brown.
Remove and serve. Pour some sriracha or hot sauce on top if you want some heat (for yourself!).