Coconut Mawa Barfi

It has been a while since I had delved into the business of making sweets which led me to ponder what could be the ideal comeback. Finally I decided to make ‘barfi’ with mawa and milky white grated coconut. I am a fan of sweets made of coconut, the fact can be proved with my earlier post of coconut laddus (Chinir Narkol Naru , Gurer Narkol Naru , Carrot Coconut Laddu). This time I coupled it with mawa to make it even more lucrative. The barfi is indeed a quick to make recipe. The raisin (kismis) on the top enhances its beauty. By this recipe you can impress your guests within a jiffy.

Coconut Mawa Barfi

Coconut Mawa Barfi

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Chocolate Kalakand with Condensed Milk (Milkmaid)

We all wait round the year for the festive season which sets off with Durga Puja and Navaratri and continues till Deepavali. While soaking in the joy of festivity, as Durga Puja is just over, on the occasion of Bijoya Dashami or Dusshera, I believe it is great to share a recipe of a favourite sweet dish called Kalakand, to be precise chocolate Kalakand

If one recalls, I shared Kalakand recipe once, but this time it is slightly different in terms of preparation and content. Kalakand with a chocloate flavour is new and rocking. And it is much quick and easy this time coz I used condensed milk bypassing the lengthy churning procedure adopted last time.

I feel happy and content sharing sweets with you, my fellow bloggers and patrons and wish Ma Durga showers blessings on you and your family.

Chocolate Kalakand

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Muger Methai (Mung Dal Laddu)

As Diwali embarks shortly from now to enlighten our mind and spirit, we should welcome it with all our heart wide open. This is a great occasion to exchange pleasantries, happiness and whatever good in life. Through this blog, I am delighted to share with you a sweet recipe, much loved and adored and called mung laddu or muger methai. It is sweet indeed, soaked generously in ghee. But we should not bother, since it is diwali time and we will enrich our life with the extra sweetness. A very happy diwali to all 🙂

Muger Methai (Mung Dal Laddu)

Muger Methai (Mung Dal Laddu)

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Gurher Rashogolla (Rasgulla in Date Palm Syrup)

The winter is bygone for this year from this part of the world where I belong and it left moments, memories and some recipes as well. In one of my earlier posts, I depicted the glory of winter dessert through Gurher Payes or Rice Pudding with Date Palm Jaggery. Now as the spring sets in, why should not we stir the memory and linger on it through another winter special recipe, called Gurher Roshogolla. The least said of Roshogollas, the better, which incidentally happens to be my first post. But the magic balls with Gurh or date palm syrup is nothing short of an enigma.

Gurher Rasogolla (Rasgulla in Date Palm Jaggery)

Gurher Rasogolla (Rasgulla in Date Palm Jaggery)

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Rasgulla “2 in 1”

It is great to be back after a long sabbatical with a recipe which you may find quite startling. You all are aware about the legendary status of Rasgulla or “Roshogolla” as they say in Bangla. How to pinch a bit more colour into the legend, literally?  A few months back, I happened to find the 2 in 1 Rasgulla, that is half in white and half in chocolate, at a family function. Flavour of chocolate added a whole new dimension in the traditional Rasgulla taste and I liked it immensely. Not only the taste, I liked the half white half dark design even more. Could not wait long and tried it during the Dusshera or “Bijoya Doshomi” with success. Now I find it to be a fitting recipe to post as a sign of my return to the online world of culinary adventure. Enjoy.

Rasgulla "2 in 1"

Rasgulla “2 in 1”

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Malpua

Malpua is a pretty common Indian dessert, fascinating in taste and lucrative in looks. I am always intrigued by its colour, off white around the center with the edges appearing brown. It can be quickly described as the Indian version of fried pan cake sans the egg and soaked into sugar syrup. Pretty easy to cook at home, malpua is a sheer delight with the combination of semolina and flour with the seeds of fennel and falvour of ghee making each bite special.

Malpua

Malpua

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Gajorer Halua or Carrot Halwa

For me Carrot halwa or Gajorer halua has always been a special attraction in winter. I eagerly waited for the day when my mother would prepare it for me. In those days my job was to grate the carrot which was actually the laborious part of the recipe 😉 I loved it so much that I could end up doing anything to have carrot halwa 😉

However, with the age I got clever and now the story is just the opposite. For this recipe I made my mother grate the whole bunch of carrot while I acted like a boss 🙂 The recipe is a tribute to my mother and to the golden memory of childhood.

Ganjorer halua or Carrot halwa

Ganjorer halua or Carrot halwa

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Malai Chomchom – Guest Post for Chitra’s Healthy Kitchen

Bengal is famous for its huge collection of sweets among which those made from Indian cottage cheese or ‘chena’ are the special ones. When my friend Chitra of Chitra’s Healthy Kitchen fame asked me to share a recipe of sweet dish as a guest post, I decided to share something which is a delicacy of Bengal and I chose ‘Malai Chomchom’.

Chomchom is nothing but Rasgulla of different shape, either flat or cylindrical. When it is dipped into a thick concentrated gravy of milk it is called Malai Chomchom.

You are already aware of my indulgence in Chitra’s healthy and everyday recipes. I am a big fan of her innovative ideas and really glad to connect with her in person. It is worth visiting her blog,Chitra’s Healthy Kitchen, where she shares her recipes and ideas. I am really grateful to her for giving me this opportunity.

Malai Chomchom

Malai Chomchom

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Kajur Borfi or Kaju Katli or Cashew Nut Fudge

Kaju Borfi or Kaju Katli is a very common Indian sweet and my all time favourite too. During ‘Diwali’, the festival of lights, people exchange boxes full of Kaju katli and wish each other. My mother also used to get a Kaju katli box from her office during this festive time. I still get amused to recall that I was the one to finish half of the box within few hours. Even till now my obsession for it is not reduced a bit and I hardly need any occasion to prepare. Before making it I never realised that the process is so simple and I can make my favourite Kujur borfi at will. Give it a try and you may forget to buy it from market.

Kajur Borfi/Kaju Katli

Kajur Borfi/Kaju Katli

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Firni

Firni happens to be one of my favourite desserts. It is a specialty of aromatic rice pudding, vastly popular in Northern India and across Pakistan and middle eastern countries. Although it is nothing similar to authentic Bengali desserts, still quite popular in Bengal as well, served as a following dessert to Biryani in Mughlai restaurants. Instead of whole grain of rice as used in the known form of rice puddings like kheer or Payesh, a coarse rice paste is used in this preparation. Firni also is a bit more condensed than the usual rice pudding, almost having a custard like texture. It is also far easier to make if you are to come up with something very quick. Ideally firni is served in small earthen bowls, which look very cute. Otherwise, you can serve in glass bowls like I did.

Firni

Firni

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Balushahi

The fever of making sweet is still there for me. As the Jalebi which I made a day before diwali, vanished in seconds, I thought to prepare another sweet on the very day of diwali. We call it Balushahi back home, which is quite an well known Indian dessert made from a stiff dough of all purpose flour, ghee and a pinch of baking soda. These are small doughnut like disks, fried in ghee or oil and dunked in thick sugar syrup to get a sugar coating over it. Containing a rich sweetness with flaky texture, Balushahis can well make the occasions even more special.

Balushahi

Balushahi

Ingredients for 10 pieces :

  1. Plain flour – ¾ cup
  2. Sodium bicarbonate – 1/8 teaspoon
  3. Ghee/Clarified butter – 3 tbspoon
  4. Plain yogurt (whisked) – 2 tbspoon
  5. Cooking oil/Ghee for deep frying
  6. Sugar – 1 cup
  7. Water – ½ cup
  8. Green cardamom powder – ½ teaspoon (optional)
  9. Sliced pistachio for garnishing (optional)

Procedure :

Shift together the flour and bicarbonate of soda in a large bowl.

Add ghee to the flour mixture and rub with your fingertips until it resembles breadcrumbs.

Now add yogurt and make a dough (add few drops of water if needed). Don’t over knead the dough as we don’t need it to be very smooth and soft . Cover the dough with a damp cloth and let it rest for 45 minutes.

Then make 10 small flat balls out of the dough. Make a small indentation at their centers using your thumb. The balls need not be very smooth either, so don’t overwork with them.

Making Balushahi balls

Making Balushahi balls

 Now heat sufficient amount of oil/ghee in a frying pan over medium flame. Gently slide the dough balls into the oil and deep fry them over low flame. Don’t overcrowd the pan, fry them in batches. Gradually the balushahi will start floating at the top. Turn gently and fry the other side till golden.

Remove them with a slotted spoon and transfer to paper towel to soak the excess oil. Let them cool and reach to the room temperature.

After deep-frying

After deep-frying

To make sugar syrup, take sugar and water in a medium size pan and heat over medium-high flame. As all the sugar dissolves and syrup starts boiling, add cardamom powder and let it simmer for 10 minutes or until attains two-thread consistency.

Remove the syrup from gas and dip cold balushahi in it. Let them soak the sugar syrup for 1.5 – 2 hours.

Gently remove balushahi on a serving plate and top with pistachio slices.

Serve after 1 hour to have a sugar coating at the surface of Balushahi.

Balushahi is ready to be served

Balushahi is ready to be served

Note :

  1. Fry the balushahi over low flame otherwise only the outer part will turn golden and inner part remain uncooked. It may take some time, so have patience.
  2. Don’t make the dough very soft and smooth otherwise you will miss its flaky texture.
  3. If you don’t want the sugar-coating on your Balushahi then add 1 teaspoon of lime juice to the sugar syrup in order to prevent sugar crystallisation.

Diwali Special – Jalebi or Jilipi

“Deepavali” or “Diwali” is the festival of light celebrated all over India. Every household gets lightened with “diya” or candle or electric lights. We enjoy the festival to its fullest by setting various colourful crackers on fire, which is the most attractive part for me. 🙂

For Bengalis Diwali is also significant for “Kali puja”. Just a day before diwali we worship goddess Kali and it is celebrated all over West Bengal. Again Khichuri Bhog is the main prasad for Kali puja.

To celebrate diwali in my own way, I decided to prepare some sweets at home. I have already tried and posted the recipes of Rasgulla, Kalakand, Rasmalai, Gulab Jamun and Shandesh. These are mostly “chena” or Indian cottage cheese based desserts. This time I preferred  to try something different, easy to make and a significant Diwali sweet and I  came up with the idea of  “Jalebi”.

Jalebi is a very popular Indian dessert made from flour batter in pretzel or circular shape, soaked in sugar syrup. It is one of my favourite sweets. I still recall my childhood days when not for a single Sunday we could miss it in our breakfast with bread or after having “Kachori” or stuffed puri. With Diwali just around the corner, I take this opportunity to present the recipe of Jalebi, which I tried after a long time.

Wish you all a very happy and prosperous Diwali. 🙂

Jalebi or Jilipi

Jalebi or Jilipi

Ingredients for 12 – 15 pieces :

For Jalebi batter :

  1. Plain flour – ½ cup
  2. Fine semolina/Bengal gram flour – ½ teaspoon
  3. Plain yogurt – 1 tbspoon (optional)
  4. Active dry yeast – 1 teaspoon
  5. Sugar – ½ teaspoon
  6. Pinch of turmeric powder (for colour, optional)
  7. Few saffron strands grind to powder (optional)
  8. Oil – 1 teaspoon
  9. Luke warm water – 7-8 tbspoon
  10. Oil for deep frying
  11. One Ketchup bottle/Ziploc bag

For sugar syrup :

  1. Sugar – 1 cup
  2. Water – ½ cup
  3. Lemon juice – 1 teaspoon (to prevent crystallisation)
  4. Green cardamom powder – ½ teaspoon
  5. Few strands of saffron (optional)
  6. Few drops of rose water (optional)

Procedure :

Take 2 tbspoon lukewarm water in a small bowl, add sugar and dry yeast and stir well. Cover the bowl and keep aside for 10 minutes. When foam appears at the top of mixture, you are confirmed that yeast is properly activated. Otherwise you have to repeat the process.

Before activation of yeast

Before activation of yeast

After activation of yeast

After activation of yeast

Mix all the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Add yogurt, yeast mixture, oil and remaining water to make a lump free batter.

Now cover the bowl and place in a warm place (I put it in oven) for fermentation for 1 hour.

After 1 hour check the consistency of the batter. If it is too thick add little water. The batter should neither be very thick nor light still maintaining a pouring consistency.

Jalebi batter & Ketchup bottle

Jalebi batter & Ketchup bottle

As warm sugar syrup is required to dip the jalebis in, prepare it before frying the latter. To do that take sugar and water in a medium size pan and heat over medium flame. As all the sugar dissolves and syrup starts boiling, lower the heat and add lemon juice, cardamom powder and saffron strands. Let it simmer for 5-6 minutes and then put the gas off. We need a single-thread sugar syrup.

Simultaneously heat sufficient amount of oil in a large, flat frying pan over medium flame. The oil should be moderately hot while frying the jalebi.

Now transfer the batter into the ketchup bottle. To make jalebis, pour the batter into hot oil in a rapid circular motion starting from centre towards the edge. Make the sizes according to your preference.

Frying Jalebi

Frying Jalebi

Fry them till golden brown and then transfer to a paper towel to soak the excess oil.

Now dip the jalebis into the hot sugar syrup. Soak them for 1-2 minutes and then transfer to a serving bowl.

Serve warm or cold. I prefer my jalebi to be hot. 🙂

Jalebi is ready to be served

Jalebi is ready to be served

 Note :

  1. I have used yeast for quick fermentation. If you don’t have yeast then leave the batter at least for 2 hours for natural fermentation (24 hours for best result). In that case, use little amount of water and ½ cup of yogurt to make the batter. Add ½ teaspoon baking powder in the batter before frying jalebis.
  2. If you don’t have ketchup bottle, then use ziploc bag. First make a tiny hole at one corner of the bag and release the air inside, then pour the batter in and zip it. When you are ready to fry the jalebis make the hole a little bigger and fold the bag like a piping bag and then follow the usual procedure.
  3. If you have excess batter then you can store it in the refrigerator for 1 week.

Shandesh

“Shandesh”, a dry sweet made from ‘chena’ or Indian cottage cheese, is a speciality of West Bengal & Bangladesh. It comes in different shapes and flavours. Various moulds of different structures are often used to give them some beautiful shapes and decoration. As for flavours, nowadays one can find right from Mango Shandesh to Chocolate Shandesh to Rose falvoured ones. The confectioners use synthetic colours and preservatives to give them a lucrative look. However, if you go for the traditional Shandeshes, which I personally prefer, they are usually milky white in colour and possess a chastity in the feature. However, one can show his/her creative quotient by giving Sandesh the look he/she likes.

After a small break I am posting this recipe. As our Durga Puja ended just few days back, I want to wish you all “Subho Bijoya” and happy Dashera. “Bijoya Dashomi” is incomplete without Rashogolla/Rasgulla and Shandesh.

Shandesh

Shandesh

Ingredients for 10 pieces :

  1. Milk – 4 cups (I used 1.5% fat milk, you can use full fat milk)
  2. Lemon juice/Vinegar – 2 tbspoon (This time I used vinegar to avoid the smell of lemon juice completely)
  3. Caster sugar – ¼ cup
  4. Green cardamom powder – ½ teaspoon (optional)
  5. Few strands of safron
  6. Milk – 1 teaspoon
  7. Pistachio slices for garnishing

Procedure :

Make Chena/Indian Cottage Cheese out of milk and vinegar/lemon juice.

"Chena" or Indian cottage cheese

“Chena” or Indian cottage cheese

Take out the chena on a flat work surface (preferably on a wooden surface) and rub with your palm for 4-5 minutes or until smooth.

Now add cardamom powder and half of the sugar to the chena and mix well. Then add rest of the sugar and mix homogeneously with chena by kneading well for a couple of minutes. Getting mixed with sugar, the chena will turn little soft and watery.

Now cook this chena, stirring continuously, in a nonstick pan over low heat for 5 – 6 minutes to get rid of the raw flavour of chena.

Now transfer the cooked chena on a plate and let it cool down a bit. Again knead the chena for a couple of minutes while still warm.

Now divide the chena into 10 equal parts and give them your desired shape (I made flat round balls, you can make square shape also). At this point the chena balls still remaining soft, however turns dry and hard as getting cold .

For garnishing add milk to the saffron strands and the nice yellow colour of saffron will get into the milk. Now dip your finger tip into this yellow colour and place at the centre of the chena balls, press a bit to make a small indentation.

Garnishing - step 1

Garnishing the Sandesh

Top with pistachio slices.

Sandesh is ready to be served

Shandesh is ready to be served

Note :

  1. For best result prepare the chena one night before and hange the cheese cloth containing chena/cheese overnight to remove the excess water completely.
  2. Don’t over cook the chena otherwise it will become crumbly and difficult to bind.
  3. Garnishing is completely up to you. One can have sandesh without any garnishing at all.

Kakinada Kaja/Madatha Kaja – Guest post by Aruna of ãhãram

I stepped  into the blog world specially for few of my friends who were interested to know the recipes of my dishes. It is worth mentioning that I got immense support and encouragement from my husband in this journey. As a blessing of my new practice, I found a number of wonderful co-bloggers from different part of the world, get acquainted with their culture and of course food. Inspired by them I also started sharing some of very common typical Bengali recipes, so that they also got to know our food and culture.
In order to enhance my knowledge about diverse foods and their ethnicity, I decided to request my lovely blogger friends to share some guest post in my blog. So, today’s post is not about my recipe, instead one from Aruna of ãhãram. As a generous response to my request, Aruna shares the recipe of a traditional sweet from Andhra Pradesh called Kakinada Kaja or Madatha Kaja.
During this course of blog writing I call myself lucky to know a warm person like her. I am glad to have her as a friend and co-blogger. Her lovely comments and responses always work as a boost for me.
She tries to bring the regional variety in Indian food under one umbrella, called ãhãram. Even I got surprised to hit upon few Bengali recipes there. I must admit that along with other South Indian recipes, I am a big fan of her Mumbai Street food recipes. So, it is worth to visit her blog to have an overall idea about Indian food and culture.
Now let me talk about today’s recipe. As I came to know from Aruna, Kaja, plural of which is Kajalu, is a crispy deep fried layerd nuggets made of flour, dipped into sugar syrup. It is the famous sweet from the city Kakinada, so got the name Kakinada Kaja. Again Madatha means folds in Telegu. As layers in the sweet is a result of consecutive foldings, the name is Madatha Kaja.
Aruna’s Kakinada Kaja reminds me of “Khaja” from Puri, Odisha, of which I am a big fan . So as soon as she asked for my opinion on this recipe for guest post, I agreed immediately.
Thank you very much Aruna for all your efforts and such an elaborate description.
Enjoy the flavour of Andhra Pradesh in this sweet, crunchy Kakinada Kaja from Aruna’s Kitchen. 🙂
Madata Kaja or Kakinada Kaja

Madata Kaja or Kakinada Kaja

Makes: 15-20
Time: 60-75 Minutes
 
Ingredients
  1. Maida – 1 Cup
  2. Sugar – 1.5 Cups
  3. Water – 2/3 Cup for Syrup + More for the Dough
  4. Rice Flour – 1 tsp
  5. Ghee – 2 tsp + 2 tsp
  6. Soda – 2 Large Pinches
  7. Oil for Deep Frying
Method to Make Dough
  1. Sieve the maida and soda together.
  2. Melt 1 tsp of ghee.
  3. Pour the hot ghee onto the maida.
  4. Mix to get a crumbly texture.
  5. Using a little water at a time, knead into a firm dough.
  6. Cover with a wet cloth and set aside for 15 minutes.
Method to Make the Syrup
  1. After the dough has rested, add 2/3 cup water to 1.5 cups sugar.
  2. Over medium heat, boil the mix for about 15 minutes to create a syrup.
  3. Once the sugar has melted completely, let the syrup simmer over low heat.
    Sugar Syrup

    Sugar Syrup

Method to Make the Kajalu
  1. Divide dough into four equal portions.
  2. Make for thin rotis with each portion.

    Roll the dough into a roti

    Roll the dough into a roti

  3. Melt the 2 tsp of ghee.
  4. Add the rice flour to the ghee and make a paste.

    Ghee and Rice Flour Paste

    Ghee and Rice Flour Paste

  5. Take one roti.
  6. Apply a thin layer of the rice paste flour all over the roti.
  7. Place another roti on top of it.
  8. Lightly roll the two layers together so that they stick. Do not apply too much pressure. Roll very lightly.
  9. Roll the two layers into a tight tube.

    Roll the roti into a tube

    Roll the roti into a tube

  10. Cut the tube into 1/2″ pieces.

    The kajas in the making

    The kajas in the making

  11. Gently press each kaja so that the layers stick together.
  12. Heat the oil till it is medium hot.
  13. Over low to medium heat, fry the kajalu till they are golden brown. Each batch will take anywhere from 8-12 minutes. Frying like this will ensure that the inner layers are also fried perfectly and that you achieve the layered look.
  14. With a slotted spoon, life the fried kajalu out of the oil.
  15. Immediately dip the hot kajalu in the simmering paakam/sugar syrup.
  16. Let the kajalu simmer for 8-10 minutes.

    kajalu in paakam

    kajalu in paakam

  17. With a slotted spoon life the kajalu out of the syrup and spread onto a plate to cool down.
  18. Store in an air-tight container.
  19. Enjoy!

    Madatha Kaja or Kakinada Kaja

    Madatha Kaja or Kakinada Kaja

Tips
  • You could fan-fold each roti instead of staching two and rolling them. That is the traditional way of doing it. However, it is a skill to be mastered and so I showed you an easy way.
  • Ensure that the syrup is not too thick, otherwise the kajalu will not absorb it.
  • Ensure that the syrup is simmering and the kajalu are hot (straight from the oil) at the instant that you add the kajalu to the syrup. If either one of them is cold, the sugar will crystallize.
  • As the kajalu simmer in the syrup, the syrup tends to thicken. So ensure that you make the kajalu in one or at the most two batches.
  • If you need to dilute the syrup, boil some water and add the hot water to the syrup. If you add cold water, the sugar will crystallize.

Gulab Jamun with Milk powder

I am very happy to post a dessert recipe after quite a long time. The sweet dish is the famous “Gulab Jamun”, dear to all of us.

In past I used to make jamuns from the ready-made Gulab Jamun Mix available in the market. Then I followed the instruction at the back of packet and they turned out absolutely perfect all the time. After moving to Utrecht, initially I was running out of that mix which prompted me to give it a try without any ready-made mixture. I searched for its recipe on you tube and was virtually flooded many.

Gulab jamuns are mainly made from Mawa or Khoya. This ingredient is rarely available outside India. It is quite a job to make mawa at home and  to skip the hard labour, I used milk powder as an alternative.

The recipe is very simple and easy. You just have to pay attention in few important aspects of its preparation, which I try to state clearly.

If you are in love of Indian sweets and dearly miss it, follow this easy going recipe and make the tempting Gulab Jamuns at once.

Gulab Jamuns

Gulab Jamuns

Ingredients for 20 pieces :

  1. Full fat milk powder – 1 cup
  2. Self raising flour – 1/3 cup
  3. Fresh cream (liquid) – 9 -10 tbspoon
  4. Granulated white sugar – 2 cups
  5. Water – 3 cups
  6. Green cardamom – 4 pods
  7. Few strand of Saffron (optional)
  8. Cooking oil for deep frying

Procedure :

Mix the flour with milk powder in a bowl.

Add 6 tbspoon of cream, at a time, to the mixture to bind it. Then add 1 tbspoon of cream each time and knead the dough till it becomes soft. Cover the bowl with a plate and keep it aside for 10 minutes.

In a big pan take the sugar and water. Open the cardamom pods and add them to water, followed by saffron. Put the pan over medium flame and let the sugar dissolve. After that boil the mixture for 10 minutes and then put the gas off. Cover the pan with a lid so that the sugar syrup remains warm.

Now divide the dough into 20 equal parts and make smooth (crack free), round balls out of them by rolling each part between your palms.

Making of round balls from the dough

Making of round balls from the dough

Heat sufficient amount of oil in a frying pan over low-medium heat. As the oil becomes hot put the gas on low and add those balls into the oil.  Fry them till they turn light brown. Using a spatula or spoon keep rotating the balls while frying to make sure that they are evenly cooked from all over. Transfer them on paper towel to remove the excess oil.

Fried Gulab Jamuns

Fried Gulab Jamuns

As the excess oil has been soaked, transfer the warm gulab jamuns into the warm sugar syrup keeping the pan uncovered.

Gulab Jamuns into the sugar syrup

Gulab Jamuns into the sugar syrup

Let the gulab jamuns to soak sugar syrup at least for 1 hours.

Now you are ready to serve the tasty gulab jamuns. 🙂

Delicious Gulab Jamus are ready to be served

Delicious Gulab Jamus are ready to be served

Note :

  1. The two important conditions of making desired Gulab Jamun is the ideal texture of the dough and the temperature of the oil. The dough should neither be very hard nor sticky. The texture should be very smooth and oil moderately hot. If your oil is too hot then the outer skin of the jamuns will cook faster while the inner part will remain uncooked. Again the oil should not be cold either.
  2. Try to make crack free round balls.
  3. If your sugar syrup gets cold while you are frying the jamuns, please warm it again before adding the fried jamuns. Note that both Fried jamuns and sugar syrup should be kept at lukewarm temperature.
  4. If your frying pan is a not that big, then fry the jamuns in batches. Don’t overcrowd the pan.
  5. You can also use plain flour instead of self-raising flour. In that case add ½ teaspoon of baking powder to the mixture.
  6. You can also use milk instead of cream. I used cream to make my jamuns rich in taste. Adjust the amount of milk by adding little at a time.
  7. If you are using zero fat milk powder then add 1 tbspoon of butter/ ghee in the mixture and mix it very well before adding the cream/milk.

Rasmalai or Rashomalai

“Rasmalai” is another popular Indian sweet dish made from milk, and one of my favourites too. The only way out not to stay deprived from these dear dishes, here far away from India, is to prepare them at my own kitchen. So, here comes the recipe of Rasmalai for you which you can try with ease. If you liked the recipe of Rasgulla, you will like Rasmalai for sure. Enjoy !!!!!!!!

Delicious Rasmalai or Roshomalai

Delicious Rasmalai or Roshomalai

Ingredients for 12 – 14 Rasmalai :

  1. Full fat milk – 2 lit.
  2. Lemon juice – 2 – 3 tbspoon
  3. Granulated Sugar – 300 gm.
  4. Semolina  – ½ teaspoon
  5. Powdered sugar – 1 tbspoon
  6. Green cardamom – 2 – 3
  7. Sliced pistachio – ½ tbspoon
  8. Almond – 3 – 4
  9. Few strand of saffron
Ingredients

Ingredients

Procedure :

Making of “Rasmalai” consists of two major steps. First step is to make “Ras” which is nothing but a “flat Rasgulla” and the second one is to prepare “Malai”, which is a concentrated milk flavoured with saffron, cardamom, pistachio and almond in which the “Ras” is immersed.

Step 1 : Making of “Ras”

At first you have to prepare “chena”or Indian cottage cheese with 1 lit. of the milk and lemon juice. For this recipe look into the page entitled Chena/Indian cottage cheese under the “Useful Supplementary” tab in my blog.

"Chena" or Indian cottage cheese

“Chena” or Indian cottage cheese

In order to squeeze out the excess water from the cheese either hang the cheese cloth containing the cheese for at least 30 minutes or keep it under heavy pressure for approx. 10 – 15 minutes. You can use any heavy material even a heavy book as I often do.

Now place the cheese on a clean flat surface and knead with your palm for 7 minutes. Then add semolina and powdered sugar and again knead for another 7 minutes or until you get a smooth dough. Leave the cheese dough for 1o minutes so that semolina can absorb the water from the cheese and mingle well with it.

Kneading of chena with pulm

Kneading of chena with palm

Now make 12 – 14 smooth cheese balls from this dough. Flatten them a bit pressing by hand to get the shape of Rasmalai.

Round & flat cheese balls

Round & flat cheese balls

Now take 80 gm. of granulated sugar and 1 cup of water in a pressure cooker to make the sugar syrup for flat rasgullas. Put the pressure cooker on medium flame and let the sugar dissolve. As the mixture starts to boil put the flat cheese balls into it and cover with the lid. Cook for 5 – 7 minutes over low flame or until you get the first whistle. Don’t uncover it immediately, let it come to the room temperature, otherwise the cheese balls will shrink and you will not get the desired sponginess. In the meanwhile let’s make the “Malai”.

Step 2 : Making of “Malai”

Take the remaining 1 lit. of milk in a heavy bottomed pan. Boil the milk over medium heat till it reduces to half of its volume, stir occasionally so that it does not get burnt from the bottom. This process takes a long time so have patience. In the meantime slice the almonds and grind few of it and few of sliced pistachios. Also grind the green cardamoms. Add remaining sugar, cardamom, saffron strands, grounded almond and pistachio into the reduced milk. Boil the milk for few more minutes until the sugar get completely dissolved into it. Now let it also come into the room temperature.

Assembling of “Ras” & “Malai” :

"Ras" & "Malai"

“Ras” & “Malai”

Squeeze the sugar syrup from the “flat rasgullas” or “ras” and immerse them into the “malai”. Garnish with sliced almon and pistachio.

Garnishing Rasmalai with Almond & Pistachio

Garnishing Rasmalai with Almond & Pistachio

Leave it like this for at least 30 minutes before serving so that the “malai” can well be absorbed by “Ras”.

Rasmalai is ready to serve

Rasmalai is ready to serve

 Note :

  1. Don’t add lemon juice in very hot milk. The result would be a hard cheese which is not desirable for this recipe.
  2. For best result make the “chena” or cottage cheese the night before your day of preparation. Hang the cheese cloth containing cheese overnight in order to remove the excess water.
  3. The amount of water to make “Rasmalai” sugar syrup should be less than that of “Rasgulla” syrup. For the fact that here the cheese balls should interact with the surface of the vessel to maintain its flat shape. (Ref. Rasgulla recipe).
  4. Don’t overcrowd the vessel/pressure cooker with cheese balls. There should be enough space left in the vessel for cheese balls to turn double in size. So if you have quite a large number of cheese balls then divide them into batches before putting them into the pressure cooker.

 

 

 

 

Kalakand

“Kalakand” is a very popular Indian sweet. It is made during different festivals and celebrations in India. Today I am giving you a very simple recipe of making it at home. Packed with calcium and protein, this energy rich recipe is just what you need to perk you up on a slow day.

Kalakand

Kalakand

Ingredients for 9 – 12 pieces :

  1. Whole Milk – 2 liters
  2. Lemon juice – 2 tbspoon
  3. Powdered sugar – ½ cup
  4. Thinly sliced pistachio for garnishing
  5. Ghee for greasing

Procedure :

First of all make “cottage cheese” or “paneer” or “chena” with 1 lit. (approx. 4 cups) of the milk. For its recipe look into the page entitled Chena/Indian cottage cheese under the “Useful Supplementary” tab in my blog.

In a heavy bottomed pan boil the remaining 1 lit milk on medium flame until it reduces to half, stir occasionally so that it doesn’t get burnt at the bottom. After squeezing the water very well from the “paneer” break them into small pieces and add to the half reduced milk in the pan. Now cook this, stirring continuously, till it becomes a kind of dough and starts leaving the pan from the bottom (i.e. all the moisture evaporates and a solid mass remains). Then add the sugar and stir for another 2 or 3 minute to incorporate the sugar very well into the dough. After adding the sugar you will get a soft dough in a lump form. Now transfer it in a plate greasing with ghee and flat it out in  a ½ inch thick square and level the surface. Now sprinkle the sliced pistachios on top while it is still warm so that the pistachio can stay on the top of the Kalakand well. Now leave it to set for a few hours in a cool, dry place. When completely set, cut into squares or diamonds.

Kalakand

Bengali’s Popular Dessert “Rasgulla” or “Roshogolla”

“Rasgulla” is a speciality of Bengal. This is my first blog post and I am sharing the recipe of it with you. It is a less ingredient and less time consuming recipe. Hope you will like it. Now surprise your near and dear ones by making it at home.

Rasgulla

Rasgulla

Ingredients for 12 pieces :

  1. Milk (2%) – 4 cups
  2. Lemon juice – 2 tablespoon
  3. Fine semolina – 1 teaspoon
  4. Sugar – 1½ cups
  5. Water – 4½ cups

Procedure :

The first step of making “Rasgulla” is to prepare “chena” or Indian cottage cheese. For its recipe look into the page entitled Chena/Indian cottage cheese under the “Useful Supplementary” tab in my blog.

"Chena" or Indian cottage cheese

“Chena” or Indian cottage cheese

In order to squeese out excess water from the cheese either hang the cheese cloth containing the cheese for at least 30 minutes or keep it under heavy pressure for at approx. 10 – 15 minutes. To do that you can use a heavy book also like me.

Now make small pieces of that chena and put them into a mixer. Mix it for couple of minutes and take it out on a clean, flat surface and again knead it with the palm for 5 minutes until the dough becomes very smooth. You can skip the step with the mixer and do it only by hand which I prefer. At the middle of the kneading process add the semolina.

Kneading of chena with pulm

Kneading of chena with pulm

Then start making equal size, crack-free, small balls out of this dough.

Making of cheese balls

Making of cheese balls

I have finished with 14 balls. You can increase or decrease this number according to your desired size of Rasgullas. Don’t make these balls too large as they will be double in size after getting into the sugar syrup.

14 cheese balls redy to get into the sugar syrup

14 cheese balls ready to get into the sugar syrup

Now it’s time to make the sugar syrup. Be careful while making the sugar syrup. It should not be very dense otherwise it will not be absorbed properly by chena. Take a pressure cooker, pour 4½ cups of water and 1½ cups of sugar into it. Put it on the stove and let the sugar dissolve completely. Add the balls of chena after boiling the syrup for few minutes. Put the lid of the cooker and let it cook for 5-7 minutes on medium-low flame or until you get the first whistle. Put the gas off. Please don’t unlid the cooker immediately, let it come to the room temperature and then open it. Otherwise the rasgullas will shrink and you will never get the desired sponginess.

Rasgullas are ready to be served

Rasgullas are ready to be served

Now you are ready to serve the delicious ‘rasgullas’.

Note :

  1. Don’t add lemon juice in very hot milk. The result would be a hard cheese which is not desirable for this recipe.
  2. For best result make the “chena” or cottage cheese the night before your day of preparation. Hang the cheese cloth containing cheese overnight in order to remove the excess water.
  3. The amount of water to make “Rasgulla” sugar syrup should be more than that of “Rasmalai” syrup. For the fact that here the cheese balls should not interact with the surface of the vessel to maintain its round shape.(Ref. Rasmalai recipe)
  4. Don’t overcrowd the vessel/pressure cooker with cheese balls. There should be enough space for cheese balls to turn double in size inside the vessel. So if you have quite a large number of cheese balls then divide them into batches before putting them into the pressure cooker.