Our next stop in the food journey is at Odisha. Chhena poda is a cheese dessert from the Indian state of Odisha. Compared to other regional Indian cuisines, Odia cuisines uses relatively less oil and is mild in spices but very flavourful and many sweets of the region have chhena as a base. Chhena poda literally means roasted cheese in Odia. This is an easy to make sweet dish which is prepared using paneer, semolina, sugar, raisins, cashew , ghee and then baked .
1 litre milk
1 tbsp lemon juice
3 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp semolina/suji
1 tsp ghee
2 tablespoon chopped cashew and almonds
¼ tsp cardamom powder
In a pan boil the milk on medium flame. once the milk comes to boil add in 1tbsp lemon juice. Stir continuously till the milk curdles. Drain the curdled milk over a cloth lined over a colander. Rinse off the curdled milk with fresh water to remove sourness from lemon juice. Squeeze off the water completely.
Take the crumbled paneer into a large mixing bowl. Crumble and mash slightly making sure the texture is uniform. Now add sugar and semolina to it and mix well until the sugar melts completely. Add water as required and prepare a smooth cake batter consistency. Further add chopped cashew. almonds, raisins and cardamom powder . Mix well making sure everything is combined well. Now in a small vessel grease with ghee and place a butter paper. Transfer the chenna poda batter into the mould and tap twice.
To prepare chhena poda in a pressure cooker add in 1 ½ cup of salt to the cooker. Place a stand above it. Close the lid of the cooker without keeping the gasket and whistle. Heat for 10 minutes. Now place the batter tin into cooker. Now cover and cook on medium flame for 30 minutes. Or you can alternatively preheat an oven at 180 degree celsius and bake for 15 minutes. Now chhena poda is ready to serve.