Friday, October 12, 2007

paneer, crap, lawyers wig

I have been wanting to make the Indian curd cheese called paneer ever since I saw it done on television. You bring milk to the boil, add lemon juice or yogurt and wait until curds form. You then strain the milk through a muslin-lined sieve, drain, wash the curds, still in the muslin, with cold water, and leave them to drain further. Then, keeping the curds in the muslin, tie it at the corners, press the cheese flat on a board or large plate, put a weight on it and leave it for a further hour. You are left with a fresh , milky cheese, which you can cut into cubes. Though it has little taste on its own, it acts like a sponge to absorb flavour when used with spices, and a variety of sauces.

As I pass a group of taxi drivers talking outside the station, I hear a woman taxi driver say intriguingly: "I'm just about crap at noticing other cars."

Pushing through the gravel on the drive of the house opposite is a pointed, white fungus, like the tip of a closed parasol. It is a Shaggy Ink Cap, also known as Lawyer's Wig. You can eat it while it remains white, but I have never felt inclined to.


Rashmi said...

I had a lovely prepartion of paneer for lunch just an hour ago, which my cook dished out for me... Don't ask me how she made it though! You'll find it a little surprising, mybe, that we Indians rrely ever make our own paneer. We usually get it from the corner dairy... Happy paneer adventure to you though!

Lucy said...

Shaggy ink caps taste of nothing at all and are almost all water!
Paneer is much nicer.