Tuesday, August 10, 2010
The holi month of 'saawan' usually falls during the month of August. This month is considered auspicious and many people offer prayers and observe fasts to worship Lord Shiva. As do I. I observe fasts on the Mondays of the month and visit the local temple. During my fasts I avoid certain ingredients like salt, onions, garlic, grains. The diet typically consists of sweets and fruits. I have done this since my early school days but after getting married, my husband offered to join me so now we both observe fast together (that is so sweet of him *blush*)... the only problem... while I don't have a sweet tooth and pretty much eat fruit during my fasts, he loves sweets... and sweet stuff usually contains flour (which is grain) Had made gajar halwa, singhade ka halwa and sabudana kheer several times .
Saawan this year started a couple of weeks back, so in my search to make him a sweet which can be consumed during fasts, I found this great recipe in my bookmarks to make the evergreen and popular indian sweet 'rasgulla'. I had bookmarked it some time back from Manjula's site. She has a great recipe which is well explained, easy to follow and the result was fabulous. The only change I made was adding a little cardamom powder in the syrup as I think it makes sweets taste a little better.
So here goes...
Ingredients: makes 10 - 12
Milk ........................................ 4 cups (I use 2%)
Lemon juice .............................. 1/4 cup
Sugar ...................................... 1 1/2 cup
Water ..................................... 4 1/2 cup
Green cardamom powder ............. a pinch
For the paneer -
1. Mix lemon juice in half cup of hot water and keep aside.
2. Boil the milk in a heavy bottomed pan over medium heat, stirring occasionally, making sure not to burn milk.
3. As the milk comes to a boil, add the lemon juice gradually and stir the milk gently. The curd will start separating from the whey, turn off the heat.
4. Once the milk fat has separated from the whey, drain the whey using a strainer lined with cheesecloth or muslin cloth.
5. Wrap the curd in the cheesecloth and rinse under cold water, and squeeze well. This process takes out the sourness from the lemon.
6. To take out the excess water squeeze the cloth, or press the wrapped paneer under a heavy pan for about one hour. Taking the right amount of water out of the paneer is the most important part of this recipe.
7. To check if enough water is out of the paneer, take a little piece of paneer on your palm and rub with your fingers. After rubbing the paneer for about 15-20 seconds, you should be able to make a firm but smooth ball.
8. Once the paneer is drained, place on a dry, clean surface and knead the paneer for 3-4 minutes until the paneer almost rolls into smooth soft dough.
9. Knead the paneer by dragging the palm of your hand hard on the paneer. Keep scooping it back to together and knead more. If the paneer is too crumbly, add a teaspoon of water. Your palm will be little greasy.
For the Rasgulla -
1. Divide the dough into 10 - 12 equal parts and roll them into smooth balls.
2. To make the balls apply some pressure at the first and then release when forming the balls.
3. Mix the sugar, cardamom and water in a pressure cooker on medium high heat and bring to a boil.
4. Add the paneer balls and close the pressure cooker. After the pressure cooker starts steaming, turn the heat to medium and cook for about seven minutes.
5. Make sure the pressure cooker is large enough to accommodate the finished Rasgullas, as they will expand to about double in the volume while cooking in the syrup.
6. Turn off the heat and wait a few minutes before opening the pressure cooker. Pour cold water over the pressure cooker before opening.
7. Rasgullas should be little spongy. After rasgullas are refrigerated, the sponginess will reduce and will be soft in texture.
8. Serve the Rasgullas chilled. ENJOY!
This also goes to the Bookmarked recipes - Every Tuesday event hosted by Priya.
Posted by Puja at 1:50 PM