Homemade Paneer{Indian cottage cheese}

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Back to basics today. I have to confess that it took me literally years before I tried making paneer at home. Still, at times, I use the store-bought paneer, of course only after checking that it does not have any extra additives or preservatives. Homemade paneer by far has the freshest taste and beautiful soft texture. It is super easy to make with just 2 basic ingredients! So if you have time or can plan ahead homemade paneer is the way to go.

Paneer is fresh unsalted white cheese used in Indian cooking, that can be made at home with just whole milk and lemon juice! It has a very mild creamy flavor and crumbly texture that goes well with many curries and desserts!

Fresh paneer can be grilled on skewers for some fun kebabs and also used in sandwiches, wraps and pita pockets! It is a very versatile ingredient to use in Indian curries like Palak Paneer , Matar Paneer or Paneer Tikka Masala. Homemade paneer can also be used in making many Indian desserts, I love making delicious homemade Rasmalai!

Here is a step by step recipe:

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Chana Masala Spice blend

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I have been working to perfect the spice blend for my restaurant style chana masala for almost a month. There is no wrong way to make this spice blend as long as you have some basic key ingredients. The only tricky part was figuring out the proportions so that the dish is a perfect blend of spicy and tangy flavors, without over complicating the recipe by using too many ingredients. I am so excited that I finally have my recipe nailed and happy to share it with you. Here is how I make my favorite homemade chana masala spice blend.

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Homemade Ghee

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I love ghee! Ghee is a staple in traditional Indian cooking and Ayurveda.  It enriches the food with its nuttier flavor and rich golden color. I use it in curries, daals, parathas, baking, frying and Indian desserts!

Ghee is essentially clarified butter that is cooked a bit longer until the clarified butter is golden and the milk solids at the bottom are light golden brown. It has a very high smoke point making it an excellent replacement for refined Oils.

When made from high quality butter, it is a great source of fat soluble vitamins like Vitamin K and is great for teeth, hair, skin and nails.

Ghee is made from butter but since the milk solids and impurities have been removed, most people who are lactose or casein intolerant have no issue with ghee.

All you need to make ghee is  good quality unsalted butter. I like to use grass fed  kerrygold unsalted butter. I always make a big batch that usually goes for 4-6 weeks!

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