How to Make Paneer, Paratha & Paneer Butter Masala

For the third instalment of the ‘cheese and bread’ project series we’re making an Indian cheese. This time the leftover whey will not only be used to make bread, but it will be also added to the curry (paneer butter masala) which will contain the cheese.

The recipes are quite basic and easy, but the results are extremely tasty and moreish. For me, the best part is that all the elements of this meal are made by hand and by ourselves, and they are all tied together by the same ingredient.

As the projects move on the cheese recipes become simpler. First, we made Latvian caraway cheese which contained a few different ingredients and a couple of them were quite unusual for a cheese recipe. Then we made a type of cheese similar to mozzarella. While it only contained two ingredients, the process of making it was a bit hands-on.

Paneer is as basic as it gets with only two ingredients and a very simple method. We will warm up the milk and mix it with lemon juice the acidity of which will make the curd separate from the whey. After the curd has separated it will be strained in a cheesecloth, pressed, and cooled.

Paneer can be used in many different Indian dishes. It’s a great vegetarian protein. Paneer butter masala is a fragrant and creamy curry usually served with a flatbread. Paratha is the perfect accompaniment to this dish.

Do not use ultra pasteurised milk (UHT) because it may not work. Use freshly squeezed lemon juice.

The flatbread is made with atta (Indian whole wheat flour), but you can use regular whole wheat flour instead or make a mix of white and whole wheat.

This recipe makes enough curry and paratha for two very hungry people. To make more simply multiply the ingredients.

Watch the video down below for detailed instructions.


For the cheese

2L (0.5gal) full fat milk

60g (2.1oz) lemon juice


For the paratha –

300g (10.6oz) atta

230g (8.1oz) whey

6g (0.21oz) salt

Butter for the layers

Oil for cooking


For the curry base –

30g (1oz) butter

100g (3.5oz) onion

20g (0.7oz) garlic

20g (0.7oz) ginger

400g (14.1oz) tomato

30g (1oz) cashew nuts


5 cardamom pods worth of seeds

1 bay leaf

4 cloves

1g (0.035oz) cinnamon

4g (0.14oz) chili powder

5g (0.17oz) ground coriander

5g (0.17oz) garam masala

2g (0.07oz) salt

*Grind everything to a powder or use pre-ground spices.


To finish the curry –

280g (9.9oz) paneer. It is all the cheese you will get from the ingredients above.

30g (1oz) double cream

Fresh coriander

Whey for adjusting the consistency.


  1. Make the cheese. Bring the milk up to a boil. Switch the heat off and add the lemon juice. Stir until the milk splits up into whey and crud.
  2. Strain through a cheesecloth. Reserve the whey. Cover and press the cheese. Leave to cool down and then cut into cubes. Place in the fridge for later.
  3. Make the dough. Combine whey and salt. Mix well to dissolve the salt. Add the flour and mix to a dough.
  4. Divide the dough into 8 equal pieces and shape into balls. Cover and chill for 30 minutes.
  5. Roll out the dough and brush with butter. Fold up, roll up, tuck the tail underneath, and flatten. Cover and chill for at least 30 minutes.
  6. Make the curry base. Melt the butter in a pan on medium-high heat. Add the onion, garlic, and ginger. Cook for 10 minutes or until golden brown.
  7. Add the spices, stir, and cook for a minute. Add the tomatoes and cashews. Cook for 10 minutes. Leave to cool down.
  8. Blend the curry base to a smooth paste. If it is very thick you can add some whey to it.
  9. Cook the paratha. Roll the dough out to about 18cm (7in). Place in a pre-heated pan on medium-high heat. Brush the top side with oil. After 30 seconds flip the flatbread and brush the other side with oil. Cook the bread for 2.5 – 3 minutes in total flipping it every 30 seconds.
  10. Finish the curry. Reheat the base and adjust the consistency with whey if necessary. Add the paneer and heat it through. Finish with the double cream and chopped coriander. Serve.

Enjoy your meal!

Watch The Video Here

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