Author Topic: FREEZING PANEER  (Read 4478 times)

Offline dthelmers

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FREEZING PANEER
« on: December 15, 2011, 08:41:15 AM »
Have any of you frozen paneer? I'm thinking of cutting it into individual portion sizes for a quick meal or when company arrives unexpectedly.
Dave in CT


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Offline dthelmers

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Re: FREEZING PANEER
« Reply #1 on: March 05, 2012, 10:39:40 AM »
I guess that no one has, so I tried it. I froze a couple of slices from a batch and wrapped them in plastic wrap and froze them. I thawed them out and used them Friday, after four weeks frozen, and there was no appreciable loss of quality. I made another batch yesterday, made matter paneer with half of it, and froze the other half for another meal.
Dave in CT

Offline tinysar

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Re: FREEZING PANEER
« Reply #2 on: March 06, 2012, 08:00:35 AM »
Thanks for the update. What kind of paneer did you make? Wet/dry, crumbly/pressed? And how did you cook it for your mattar paneer? Fried in chunks, scrambled, or just crumbled thru with the peas? When you say "no loss of quality", do you mean that the texture was unchanged?

I'm just wondering because when I freeze firm tofu, the water in it forms into large ice crystals, which leave the tofu much drier and with big holes (like a coarse sponge) when thawed. This is used to good effect in some recipes, as the spongey texture sucks up sauce very nicely, but it definitely isn't the same thing after being frozen. I had always thought that paneer-like cheeses, having a similar texture to firm tofu, might respond like that to being frozen, but maybe the different composition (more fat, less water) protects it somehow.

Offline dthelmers

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Re: FREEZING PANEER
« Reply #3 on: March 06, 2012, 01:18:26 PM »
I was afraid that it might freeze like tofu, too, but it held up well. It was  a pressed dry paneer, sliceable, the kind that's good for frying. I cut it into cubes for mattar paneer, and I also add sliced mushrooms. Sometimes I fry it first, but lately I have been just adding it in at the end of cooking just to get it hot, and adding a bit more almond flour to the sauce.
By "no loss of quality", I mean that it seemed the same as fresh paneer. I was afraid that it might turn crumbly, or else rubbery, or even both, as some Swiss I have frozen has done; but it came through just fine.
The batch of paneer that I made on Sunday was boiled for a couple of minutes, instead of being brought just to the boil. I drained it and pressed it at 1 psi for a half hour, then increased to 2 psi for another 2 hours, then removed it from the press as I needed the press for another cheese. I let it sit on the counter on a cutting board for a few hours until I cooked dinner, during which time it seemed to dry out a bit more. The texture was quite like chicken, and the cubes didn't even round their corners in cooking and stirring. It has held up nicely to re-heating, unlike previous batches that seem to crumble with handling.
Dave in CT

Offline tinysar

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Re: FREEZING PANEER
« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2012, 12:13:56 AM »
Hey, thanks for the info - I had been told that it was possible to freeze paneer, but always just assumed that it would come out changed somehow, so that's good to know.


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