Chenna Poda/Chhena Poda

Indian Cooking Challenge, a monthly Event where Srivalli, picks up a traditional dish belonging any part of India and we the members try to recreate it in our Kitchen. This Month ICC Challenge is to recreate Chenna Poda aka Burnt Cheese, a Cheese dessert from the State of Orissa/Odissa.  It was easy to make this Dessert and the taste of it was awesome. No Baking powder, no Baking Soda, but it sets so wonderfully, nice and creamy!!!!!  Hubby was amazed, wow really,  a traditional dish that too, baked !!!! Thanks to Srivalli for choosing this and also to Shibani of Any One Can Cook and Nikki of Titillating Tastebuds for sharing the recipe.

A Little Intro about the Dish:Info Courtesy:Wiki
Chhena poda is usually made at home during traditional festivals in Orissa, such as Durga Puja. It is also served in small traditional roadside stalls and confectioneries throughout the state along with other delicacies such as rasagolla. Since the mid-eighties, it has gradually found its place in restaurant menus across Orissa. After losing out to another traditional Oriya sweet, rasagolla to West Bengal, the Orissa Milk Federation is investing heavily in mass producing and popularizing this delicacy, determined not to let this happen again.

1 Cup Paneer/chenna, Freshly curdled
3 tbsp Sooji/Rawa/Semolina
1 tsp Cardamom Powder.
1/2 Cup Powdered Sugar 
2 tbsp Raisins
Cashews/Almonds for Garnishing

Method To Make Paneer/Chenna
  • Boil 1.5 litres of Milk. Add juice of half a Lemon. Reduce the Flame and Keep Stirring the Milk, till it curdles and Whey separates.

  • Add 1/2 Cup Ice Cubes to it and Switch it off.
  • Drain the Paneer in a Cheese Cloth. The Whey water can be used to make Roti’s.

To Make Chenna Poda
  • Preheat the Oven to 180C/350F.
  • In a big bowl mash Paneer/chenna thoroughly using your hands. Add rest of the ingredients except Garnish and Mix well.
  • To get a caramalized effect on top, Add a tsp of ghee to the Baking pan and sprinkle little sugar.
  • Show the pan in flame, till the sugar melts. Spread the melted sugar evenly. This sounds easy, but i couldn’t spread it!!1 The sugar set so fast, it got stuck to on place on the pan!!!! 🙁
  • Spoon the Chenna/Paneer Mix to the pan, Garnish with almonds/cashews on top and Bake for 50-60minutes.
  • To do the tooth-pick test to check the doneness.
  • Cool it for sometime and Turn it on to a plate and Serve.It stays fresh for a Week in refrigerator, but no need to keep it that long, half the Chenna Poda got over the same day and rest got packed to my Hubby’s office!!!!