Showing posts with label Desserts / Sweets. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Desserts / Sweets. Show all posts

Elaneer Payasam - Guest Post

The guest post section on Curries and Spices is back! And this time, it is my dear friend A, who is contributing a lip-smacking dessert!

Gulab Jamun ~ ICC October '09

Phew! What a challenge it was!! People like me, who thought Gulab Jamun was the easiest sweet were made to think twice before uttering that again! But regardless of how challenging it was, this was probably my best experience in making sweets. Now after making these Jamuns twice or thrice before getting it perfect, I can assure that I can make best Gulab Jamuns from the scratch! Oh, that was intention of ICC right? :) So here we go on to my maiden venture of ICC of the month, Gulab Jamun initated by Srivalli.

Before going into the recipe, a short story on my first attempt which was a complete disaster. I decided to try out a small quantity and started off with 250 ml milk. It simmered to about 1/2 cup of Khova/Khoya/Mawa. All was fine till here. Now the stupid chef in me woke up and led me through the rest of process. Before I could realise, I had added twice the amount of Maida as to Khova. Needless to say, the result was chunky, elastic balls that could noway qualify for a sweet, let alone Jamun!! ;)

In the second attempt, I donned the role of a sincere student who follow the teacher's instructions to book and went through all of the recipes given by Srivalli. It took me a while to understand the basics, but once I understood the bottom-line, I should say it was surprisingly easy and resulted in proper edible jamuns. I have followed the Yum Blog method here. But it is not Gulab(less) Jamun; I managed to get hold of a bottle of Rose water. So mine is GULAB JAMUN! Gee... :D

Gulab Jamun

The following recipe is from Yum blog.
Makes: around 25 Jamuns

What we need:
Khova – 11/2 cups/ 1 recipe I simmered 8 cups of milk and got around 1.5 cups of Khoya
Maida – 1 cup
Sugar – 3 cups (if you want excess syrup i.e floating jamuns increase by a cup)
Water – 1 cup (increase if you’re increasing sugar)
Cooking Soda – 3 pinches
Cardamom – 4 pods
Saffron leaves – a few I didn't add these
Oil – 1 cup (for deep frying)

Rose water - a few drops

Khova making steps

Method :
1. Combine sugar and water in a flat bottomed broad pan and simmer on a low heat until sugar dissolves. Add cardamom powder and saffron leaves (and a few drops of rose water) and remove from fire.
2. Knead khova, maida and soda and quickly shape into balls.
3. Heat oil on a medium flame. Fry the jamuns till golden brown over a low to medium flame, keeping oil temperature uniform. Oil should not smoke.
4. Drain the jamuns and soak in the warm sugar syrup.

Serve the jamuns after half an hour.

You will achieve correct consistency for jamun syrup when 3 cups of sugar dissolves 1 cup water over low heat.
Only when the syrup is ready, mix the jamun dough. Since the dough has soda, if its kept aside the jamuns will disperse while frying and will not hold well.
Right temperature of oil of utmost importance to get soft jamuns.
Never refrigerate jamuns. Jamuns when refrigerated will shrink and become hard. Jamuns will stay fresh for 4 days when stored in air tight containers.
If you like you can add two drops of rose essence to the syrup to make it Gulab jamun.

For this measurement, I got exactly 25 jamuns, of medium sized balls.

Important notes:
1. We must follow the same order to do the jamuns, i.e sugar syrup must be ready before we fry the balls.
2. Since the balls have soda, they cannot stand for a long time. So they must be fried immediately after rolling.
3. If the oil is not of correct temperature, the balls will be unevenly cooked.
4. Add rose water to the sugar syrup only after the syrup becomes warm. If added when the sugar is boiling, it will turn bitter.

My experience:
1. I also used a tbsp of melted ghee to roll out smooth, crack-less balls.
2. I did a mistake of heating the oil too much, so some of the balls turned dark brown. For the second batch, I adjusted the oil temperature and got them right.

Hope you all enjoyed this challenge as much as I did!

Happy cooking and happy blogging!

Pasi Paruppu Sundal & Rava Ladoo

"Thenga Maanga Pattani Sundal.....!" Chennai-tes could not have obviously missed this sound! Little boys and men carrying tins of Murukku and bowls of green peas sundal are just a common sight in Marina or Elliott's beach in Chennai. And I bet, none of us could have missed the yummy sundal topped with tangy scrapped mango, forgetting about the hygiene and indulging for a moment!! :)

Festive season or not, sundal is a favorite snack for most of us. Next to the beach sundal, home-made pasi paruppu sundal is my favorite. That complemented with a yummy, melt-in-mouth Rava Ladoo, bajjis and a steaming cup of Nescafe, perched by the window sill on the raining day!!! Mmm.. I'm lovin' it! (read aloud as in McD ad!)

Rava Ladoo is not anything new; it is a breeze to most of us. So I am not going to re-invent the wheel, just sharing with you all my version!

Pasi Paruppu Sundal / Moong dal Sundal
Split Yellow Moong dal snack
Serves 2

What we need:
Yellow Moong dal / Pasi Paruppu - 1 cup
Green Chilli - 1, minced
Fresh scrapped Coconut - 4 tbsp.
Mustard - 1 tsp.
Cumin (Jeera) - 1 tsp.
Asafoetida -a pinch
Oil - 1 tbsp.
Salt - 1 tbsp. or according to taste
Turmeric powder - a pinch
Water - as needed
A dash of lemon juice

How to do:
1. Wash and clean the dal. In a vessel, take the dal and fill with water just enough to cover it. Add a pinch of turmeric powder and cook until it starts to absorb the water. Take care that the dal should not be too mushy.
2. Heat oil and sputter mustard and jeera. When they are done, add the green chilli and curry leaves.
3. Add the cooked dal, salt and mix carefully not to mash the dal.
4. Garnish with coconut and remove from the flame.

Sprinkle a dash of lemon juice and enjoy it!

Serving suggestion for over-cooked dal

Side note:- Sometimes I over-cook the dal because I like the mashed texture.In case you over-cook the dal, just crease a small cup with a drop of oil, stuff it with the sundal and invert it on the serving plate. Sprinkle some coriander leaves and it is good to go the dining room!! For kiddies, you can also make it into small balls and serve.
Sending this to "My Legume Love Affair #22" started by Susan and hosted this month @ Ruchika Cooks

Rava Ladoo

What we need:
Rava / Sooji - 1 cup
Powdered Sugar - 3/4th cup Increase the quantity of sugar according to your taste
Ghee - 100 g
Cardamom Powder - 1 tbsp.
Cashews - 10 to 15 pieces

How to do:
1. Heat a tsp. of ghee. Add the cashews and fry till they start turning brown. Set aside a few pieces of cashew as whole and break the rest of them into tiny pieces.
2. Heat another tsp. of ghee and add the rava. Roast until a nice aroma starts emitting.
3. If you prefer a smooth ladoo, let the rava cool and powder it fine.
4. In a bowl, add rava, powdered sugar, cardamom powder, broken cashew pieces and mix well.
5. Slowly add the ghee spoon by spoon and mix well. After adding about 3/4th of the ghee, try to gather the mixture and make a ball.
Mom's tip: Amma used to say that the correct consistency is, when you gather the mixture into ball and drop it, it should fall back as 3 or 4 pieces and not as a powder.
6. Now that the mix is in the right consistency, make the balls into desired size. Take a full cashew and slowly press into the ball, without breaking it.

Since Ghee is the one of the main ingredient, sending this Rava Ladoo to Sanghi's FIL: Ghee Sweets.

Happy cooking and happy Blogging!!

Rava Kesari

Kesari or Sojji (as it is derived from sooji) is often associated with the pre-marriage betrothel function or the "groom-meets-bride" ceremony in Tamilnadu (Needless to say that V was served Bajji-Sojji when they came to meet us first !! )

My mom-in-law's perfection of Kesari is still unattainable for me. Whenever I try to copy-cat her version, even without altering a spoonful of sugar, the end-result is just near-perfect and not the same as MIL's version. Probably it has something to do with her experience of cooking for so many years! :)

Rava Kesari
Rava cooked with Sugar and Ghee
Serves 2

What we need:
Rava - 1 cup
Sugar - 1 cup
Water - 2 cups
Elachi (Cardamom) powder - 1 tbsp.
Cashew nuts - 8 to 10
Dry grapes - 5 to 7
Ghee - 10 tbsp. or as required
Sliced Almonds(Badam) - 2 to 3 tbsp. Optional

How to do:
1. Heat Ghee in a Kadai or non-stick pan.
2. Roast the cashews till they turn golden brown. Remove, drain and set aside.
3. Roast the dry grapes till they turn fluffy. Remove, drain and set aside.
4. Add the rava to the remaining ghee. If required, add some more ghee.
5. On another stove, simultaneously boil the water in the ratio 1: 2 (i.e 2 cups water for 1 cup rava)
6. Fry till the rava gives out a pleasant aroma. Make sure it does not turn brown.
7. Drop a pinch of kesari color to the boiling water and add the water to the rava. Keep stiring as you add the water to avoid lumps. Stir well till the rava gets cooked.
8. Spread out the sugar all over the surface and close the pan with a lid. Let it cook for 3 to 5 minutes.
9. Open the lid, and mix well. By now the sugar would have dissolved fully.
10. Add the cardamom powder, roasted cashew, dry grapes and remove from the flame.

Garnish with sliced almonds. Serve as dessert or an evening snack with Bajjis.