Carrot Coconut Laddu

I recall to share with you the yummiest carrot desert ever i.e. Gajorer Halua or Carrot Halwa. Now, this is time to go the extra mile from where we left and make laddoos out of carrot-coconut blend. Perfectly round, super smooth and generously sweet, Gajar Naryal balls are sheer treat and irresistible too. Indeed winter with carrots is a bliss. Happy Valentines day.

Carrot Coconut Laddu

Carrot Coconut Laddu

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Rash Bora (Urad dal fritters in Sweet Syrup) – Makar Sankranti Recipe

Happy Makar Sankranti to all my readers.

Winter is here in its fullest. It is the time of the year to celebrate the holy occasion of Makar Sankranti and Poush Parbon. The signature dishes during this harvest festival are mainly prepared with rice, date palm jaggery and coconut. However today I am here with a different recipe, named Rash Bora, which is also common in Bengali households during this time. Although the ‘Rash’ or syrup is usually made with date palm jaggery (Khejurer gur/Notun gur), here I have used sugar. ‘Boras’ or vadas are nothing but the urad dal fritters.

If you have not yet decided what to make in this Poush Parbon, you can go for this easy and simple recipe 🙂

Earlier posts about Makar Sankranti Recipes :

Rash Bora (Urad dal fritters in Sweet Syrup)

Rash Bora (Urad dal fritters in Sweet Syrup)

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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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Coconut Laddu with Jaggery (Gurher Narkol Naru)

Coconut Laddu is a very common sweet found abundant over east and southern part of India. Often we prepare it to offer God as ‘prasad’. Since childhood, I saw my mother to prepare mainly Gurher Naru, or coconut laddu with jaggery, during ‘Bijoya Dasami’ and ‘Lakshmi Puja’. Apart from Gurher Naru, Chinir Naru, that is laddu made with sugar, is also quite popular. However, the former being my favourite, finds here the place to be shared with you.

Gurher Naru or Coconut Laddu with Jaggery

Gurher Naru or Coconut Laddu with Jaggery

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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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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.