Chanar payesh is a traditional Bengali Sweet Dish in which chana (soft cottage cheese or paneer) is cooked in thick milk with sugar or condensed milk. It is also known as Bengali Style Cottage Cheese Pudding or Paneer Kheer.
My mother often used to prepare this payesh. Memories of those childhood days are still fresh. My mom used to make it often either during festive seasons or just like that sometimes. Chaler Payesh or rice pudding was the most popular sweet then. However, I used to prefer chanar payesh than chaler payesh.
Chena (Cottage Cheese): To make chanar payesh, use homemade paneer, also known as chana or chena.
Milk: For a creamy and rich texture, use whole milk (full fat milk) in this recipe.
Sugar: It is a key ingredient used in this recipe. Adjust the sweetness in the recipe as per your tastebud.
Spices: Bay leaf, Crushed cardamom or cardamom powder.
Nuts: Cashew nuts or pistachios or mix or cashew, almonds and pistachios.
How to make Bengali Chanar Payesh?
Bengali style Chanar Payesh or Chenna Payesh is an easy sweet dish which you would love to relish as your after-meal dessert.
Follow the chenna payesh recipe step by step to make this delicious Bengali sweet.
Make small pieces of paneer or chana. Alternatively, mash the paneer or form little balls with the mashed paneer or chana and set aside.
For making this payesh, milk is boiled in a heavy bottom pan until it is reduced almost half of its quantity. Once the milk reduced, it becomes thick and creamy.
When the milk has been reduced, add the sugar and whisk until it has dissolved.
If you want to make chanar payesh with milkmaid, then add this point add milkmaid instead of sugar and mix well.
Finally, chena is added to the thick milk and boiled for few minutes before switching of the flame.
Many people add crumbled chena in the thick creamy milk while I prefer to add homemade paneer pieces to make chanar payesh.
Therefore, you can prepare chanar payesh either way. Why I said homemade paneer, because homemade paneer is soft in nature which gives better outcome.
After turning off the heat sprinkle cardamom powder on top. Allow to cool before adding crushed nuts. Refrigerate it for 30 minutes before serving.
Make Ahead and Storage
You can make chanar payesh in advance. If you are planning to prepare chanar payesh for your home-based party, then you can prepare it in a day or two advance. Allow chanar payesh to cool before storing it in an airtight jar in the refrigerator. It remains good up to 3-4 days in the fridge.
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Chana or Chena is the crumbled version of the curdled milk. Chena is more moist than paneer. Milk is boiled and curdling agents are added to get chena at home. The process of making chena is similar to the process of making paneer.
However, after adding the curdling agent milk curdles and accumulates together which is then separated from the whey and called chena. Chena is further solidified by putting pressure to make paneer. Click here and learn how to make chana or paneer.
Definitely you can make this payesh from scratch. For that, you have to prepare chana from milk. Read the detailed post how to make chena or paneer from milk.
Chanar Payesh | Cottage Cheese Pudding
- Heavy Bottom Pan
- 200 gms Paneer or Chana or Chenna
- 1.5 litre Milk
- 1 cup Sugar
- 1 no Bay Leaf
- ½ teaspoon Cardamom Powder
- 2 tablespoon Pista or Cashew Crushed
- Cut paneer or chana into small cubes. Alternatively, you can mash the paneer or make small balls using mashed paneer or chana and keep aside.
- Boil milk in a heavy bottom pan adding a bay leaf and reduce it to almost half.
- While reducing the milk, keep scraping the cream from sides and add into boiling milk.
- Once the milk is reduced add sugar and stir until sugar dissolves.
- Next add chana into milk and boil for 2-3 minutes.
- Switch off the gas and sprinkle cardamom powder.
- Add crushed nuts and allow it to cool. Later refrigerate it for half an hour and serve chilled.
- Do not add chana before adding sugar, milk might curdle.
- You can adjust the amount of sugar according to your taste bud.
- You can also use condensed milk instead of sugar.
- If you love cardamom, you can add whole cardamom while reducing the milk.
- You can also add raisins or nuts according to your choice.
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