Lime paneer and paneer parantha (Indian Cheese Flatbread)
Friday, June 30, 2017 at 4:24PM
The Lone Baker in "Indian", "flatbread", "golden', "indian cheese'., "make paneer', "smoked paneer', green, lime, paneer, recipe

                             lime smoked paneer parantha 

Paneer is a fresh curd/cottage cheese common in South Asia, especially in Indian, Pakistani, Afghan, Nepali, Sri Lankan, and Bangladeshi cuisines.

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Surprised by limes was I.

An unprecedented bounty of limes on the backyard lime tree this year took me by surprise; at first I was enjoying the lime slices in soda and the freshly squeezed lime in salad dressings, followed by lime curd, lime sorbet and then came the slight panic that the limes will fall soon and the tree still seemed to have 1000 fast ripening limes. Juice has been frozen, zest is dehydrating and now I'm up to making lime paneer! 

This simple two ingredient fresh cheese can be used in many Indian/Indian inspired dishes such as the paneer parantha recipe today or anytime you need a cottage cheese. 

You'll need a deep colander lined with muslin and your ready to make your cheese.

Lime Paneer


I litre or quart of full cream milk 

60 mls (2 fluid oz) of lime juice in small jug


In heavy based saucepan bring your milk almost to the boil, your milk will be hot and there will be tiny bubbles around the side of your saucepan. For those who love their cooks thermometer the milk will around 80 Celsius (175F). Turn off the heat.  

Immediately start adding your lime juice a drizzle at a time, stirring gently after each addition. Keep adding the lime juice/gently stirring until the milk separates and you have curd and whey.

gently stirring lime juice into hot milk

It doesn't look attractive at this stage, a pale green water with white floaty curd.

Leave the saucepan to cool for around 30 minutes, place your prepared colander in your kitchen sink before gently pouring in your milk mixture. 

Gather your muslin up from the sides, twist top and start to gently squeeze the excess whey (fluid) from the curds. The more whey that is removed the firmer your finished cheese will be. This will take a few minutes to do. 

cheese squeezed and ready to be pressed

Time to press into a block. Untwist the top of your muslin and wrap excess length around your cheese, place your cheese between two chopping boards and apply weight to the top board. Weight can be a stack of books to another saucepan filled with water, anything to squish the cheese. Leave your cheese for 30 to 45 minutes to press. 

Ta daaa! Finished fresh paneer/cottage cheese, you should have about 250g (8.8OZ).

From here you can use it in recipes like palek paneer the spinach and cheese curry and the stuffed flatbread parantha paneer. 

 I've included "Jimmy's" recipe video for making the flatbread, I have used his brand of atta flour... oddly recipe on side of flour is different than what is shown in video... both methods work. 

Parantha Paneer


2 cups of *Atta flour (you can use wholemeal flour) 

1/2 tsp salt

150 ml luke warm water, more if needed. 

Plus a neutral oil for oiling your pan, I used Grapeseed oil. 

*atta flour is a semi strong indian grown/processed wholemeal flour perfect for making flatbread... you can see it's a finer mill than western wholemeal flour, worth seeking out but standard wholemeal flour will also work. Here atta flour is seen with salt added ready to be mixed. 

Food processor: place flour and salt in food processor and turn on whilst pouring enough water down chute to form a soft dough. 

Hand method: place flour in mixing bowl, whisk in salt and stir in enough water to form a soft dough. Knead on lightly floured surface until smooth. 

Both methods wrap the dough and allow to rest for 30 minutes. 

After resting, pinch off two small palm sized pieces of dough (mine were 50 grams each because I'm the weighing "type"). Roll or press both balls until they are around 10 cm (4 inches) in diameter.

Season your cheese with 1/2 tsp of salt and spices of choice and crumble. Love it hot? Green chopped chillies can be added now if desired. I also lightly smoked my cheese with a smoking gun at this stage for a faux oven flavour.

Top one of the rounds with seasoned paneer and in my case fresh coriander (cilantro) leaves. 

Take the second round and place on top of the filled round and pinch together to seal. 

Roll out the filled parcel until it is thin. I rolled mine on a non stick mat and did not add extra flour, if you are rolling a bench top, lightly flour your dough/rolling pin. 

I usually just roll a few at a time, cover to stop drying out between cooking each one.

Cook your flatbread on a hot pre heated crepe pan, frypan or flat griddle. I used an electric crepe maker set on maximum heat. If using non stick cookware a light brush of oil is all you will need, slightly more for stainless steel cookware. Bubbles form on surface of cooking flatbread, when nice and bubbled flip over. 

Once you flip your flat bread will puff up like a pillow (it will deflate on cooling), cook another minute or so until golden and remove from heat. At this stage you can brush on melted butter and stack in a flatbread basket or wrap to keep warm whilst you make the rest. 

Parantha is a stand alone snack served with indian pickles, a tamarind sauce etc, in the west you'll often see it eaten alongside curries curries too. I like it for brunch as it is... ohhh, mango pickle would be good. Unlike the lamb or cauliflower parantha the filling doesn't fall out, think of it more as an enriched bread with most of the cheese incorporating into the dough. 

Fun to make and eat, happy baking :) 

You might also be interested in a lightened Chocolate and Tia Maria Fridge Cake.   

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