I know it has been a really long gap, and I am sorry for that. I would also like to say a heartfelt thanks for all your messages during this time. I stopped writing the blog due to health reasons (when I conceived my younger angel); and then both our little angels kept me on my toes. Honestly speaking no complaints – I fully enjoyed being with both of them and cherished every moment of motherhood. Though cooking was still going on full swing. I simply did not get the time to write on the blog. Now as my younger angel has started school, I am here with you guys to continue our joyful journey of cooking delicious food 🙂
Diwali is right around the corner and this being my first write-up after a long time, I have decided to make this a sweet and special dessert recipe – so let’s make Rasmalai! Rasmalai is probably almost everyone’s favourite Indian dessert. It is surely my favourite dessert since childhood. I do remember whenever anyone would ask me which sweet you want to eat, I would promptly say Rasmalai.
Rasmalai is made of two things, rasgulla (paneer balls) and malai doodh (thick sweet milk). The main ingredient of Rasmalai is milk. We make soft chenna/paneer balls (rasgulla) from half of the milk and cook the other half (of milk) till it becomes thick. Then we add those chenna balls to this thick milk and it becomes Rasmalai. So essentially we make 2 different things from the milk and in the end we just combine them. Though it seems like hard and time consuming work but trust me when you devour the Rasmalai all your hard work is paid off, it is worth every single minute of your hard work.
So let’s make Rasmalai this Diwali and make this occasion more special.
The ingredients for making Rasmalai are as follows:
- Milk: 2.5 litre + 2.5 litre
- Lemon juice: 3-5 tsp
- Sugar: 1 cup + half cup
- Saffron (Kesar): 2 pinch + 1 pinch
- Cardamom (Elaichi): 2 (powdered)
- Rose water (Gulabjal): 1Tbsp
- Almonds and Pistachios : as per your choice (chopped)
Take the first 2.5 litre milk in a heavy bottom pan and heat it on a medium flame. Stir the milk occasionally with spoon and ensure that the milk does not sticks on the bottom of the pan.
Take 2 pinch of saffron and half pinch of sugar in a small bowl and crush it with hands; once the milk boils, add this saffron-sugar to the milk. This will give a beautiful yellow colour to the milk.
Continue cooking the milk and stir occasionally till the milk reduces by half and becomes thick. Now add half cup of sugar, stir well and after 2-3 minutes switch off the gas. Then add cardamom powder, chopped almonds, chopped pistachios, saffron and rose water. Our malai doodh for the Rasmalai is ready!
Making chenna balls for the Rasmalai:
Heat the second 2.5 litre milk in a pan. Once boiled, add lemon juice very slowly( not in one go)and stir well. Once the milk start to curdles switch off the gas, stir till it curdles completely. Add more lemon juice if needed (1 tsp at a time) Once the milk is fully curdled, the milk mass (chenna/paneer) will be separate from the whey (water). Now strain the curdled milk in a colander lined with a muslin cloth and wash it thoroughly with fresh water to remove the lemony sourness. Now squeeze all the water out. Then take out the chenna/paneer and knead it with palm to make it smooth; it will take 7- 10 minutes when the chenna/paneer leaves the fat (chiknai). Use this chenna/paneer dough to make 14-15 small balls and flatten them.
Now take a deep wide pan, add 3 cups of water and 1 cup sugar and boil it. Just as the syrup comes to a rolling boil, add in the chenna/paneer balls one by one. Make sure the chenna/paneer balls get enough space in the water to expand as they will be getting double in size. Cook covered for 10- 15 minutes on medium flame. You would need to check after 10 minutes whether it has cooked or not.
Test: To check if our rasgullas are cooked or not we need to do this test. Take a glass half filled with water and put the chenna/paneer ball into it; if the ball sinks it means it is cooked.
Take out the cooked balls from the syrup and drain out all the water syrup from the chenna/paneer balls by pressing it between two spoons and then put it into a plate. Once all the chenna/ paneer balls cool down then add these balls into the warm thickened sweet milk (malai doodh made earlier).
Leave this Rasmalai for few hours so that all the chenna/paneer balls get soaked in the milk properly. Then keep this Rasmalai overnight in the refrigerator so that you can cherish the cool delicious Rasmalai next day!
Enjoy and relish your cool Rasmalai! 🙂
Insider Tips/ Finer Points:
- While curdling the milk, switch off the flame once it starts curdling otherwise paneer would get hard.
- Draining the chenna/paneer in the right way is important. Don’t press too hard otherwise the rasgullas will turn out to be dry. On the other hand, if the chenna/paneer is too moist, the rasgullas will not form/scatter in the syrup.
- Kneading the chenna/paneer is the most important part. The chenna/paneer has to be crumbly to start with. Knead it till you get a smooth non-sticky dough like consistency and it leaves out some fat/chiknaai. Make crack-free chenna/paneer balls.
- We need to flatten the chenna/paneer balls as we are not making round balls but the flattened ones.
- When transferring the chenna/paneer balls into the warm thickened milk, the balls should be at room temperature or cool but surely not warm.
- We should keep the Rasmalai in the refrigerator for atleast overnight to get the best taste.