Paneer masala – Fried and soaked cheese cubes

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There are many ways to cook paneer. For this one, you soak the fried cheese cubes in a spicy broth until they absorb the flavor of the spices and become soft and juicy. Having soaked from twenty minutes to two days, the cubes can be used to enhance vegetable dishes, or served as a snack or side dish.

Preparation and cooking time: 25 min
Soaking time: 20 min


  • 10 oz (275 g) paneer
  • ghee or vegetable oil for deep-frying
  • 1 tbs ghee or vegetable oil
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 2 cinnamon sticks, 2 inches (5 cm) long
  • 4 cloves
  • 1/2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp asafetida
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp salt


1Make paneer as described on this website and reserve 2 1/2 cups (600 ml) of the whey. Gather the paneer in a cheesecloth and rinse it under cold water for a few seconds. Now, flatten the cheese in the cheesecloth to a thickness of about 1 inch (2.5 cm) and weight it down evenly so the result will be a flat slab of firm cheese. Do this on top of the sink so the liquid has a place to drain. Leave it for 30 minutes.

2Remove the cheesecloth and cut the cheese into 1-inch (2.5 cm) cubes, or into rectangles or diamonds 2 inches (5 cm) long. Deep-fry them in ghee or vegetable oil. It should take about 4 or 5 minutes to brown the cubes lightly. Drain.

3Start a masala by heating a tablespoon of ghee or vegetable oil in a small saucepan. Stir-fry the cumin seeds, cinnamon sticks, and cloves. After about 30 seconds, follow with the powdered spices and stir-fry for a few seconds more. Now pour the whey into the masala, add the salt, and bring to a boil, then remove from the heat. Put the fried cheese cubes into this liquid masala and allow them to soak for at least 20 minutes. Just before serving, reheat the paneer masala; then drain off the liquid.

Do not forget to offer everything to Kṛṣṇa through His bonafide representative – His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupāda



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