Today’s sweet is the delicious Gulab jamun, an absolutely melt-in-the-mouth favourite Indian dessert and is a living embodiment of Indian mithai (sweet) tradition.Gulab jamus are golden brown balls in flavored sugar syrup. They are served warm or at room temperature.
The main ingredient in most Indian sweets is ‘khoya’ (hindi)/koova (telugu) which is a thickened form of milk and forms a base in most creamy sweets like gulab jamun.Gulab jamun is basically a sweet from North India and is a sweet which one enjoys eating hot during winters.
Ingredients to make the gulab jamuns:
- 1 cup khoya (kovva)can be prepared by boiling and continuously stirring one litre of milk on medium heat till it form a thick paste.
- 3/4 cup maida (all purpose flour)
- 1/4 tsp cooking soda (soda bi carbonate)
- enough ghee(clarified butter)for deep frying the jamuns
- 3 tbsps of prepared sugar syrup (warm)
- 1-2 tbsps of warm milk (not hot)
Ingredients to prepare the sugar syrup:
- 2 cups water
- 2 cups sugar
- 3-4 crushed cardomoms (optional)
Preparation of Sugar Syrup
The syrup should be made earlier and kept warm.To make the sugar syrup,mix 2 cups of sugar to 2 cups of water in a deep cooking dish. Add 3-4 cardamom pods, slightly crushed. Stir constantly with a spoon on medium heat for 15-18 minutes until sugar is all dissolved in water. Do not overheat..as the sugar might caramelize.
Transfer this hot syrup into a serving dish. Keep warm on stove.
Sieve the flour(maida).Add the khoya and baking powder to the flour(maida) and mix well.It will appear like bread crumbs.
Now add 3 tbsps sugar syrup and 1-2 tbsps of milk (warm but not hot milk) to make a soft dough.The milk can be adjusted to form a soft dough.Keep aside for half an hour.
After half an hour knead it again and make balls by gently rolling each portion between your palms into a smooth ball.You can shape into small balls or longitunal shapes.Place the balls on a plate.Keep aside.
Heat the ghee in a deep frying dish to medium heat and then turn to low heat and slip in the jamuns into the ghee from the side of the deep frying dish, one by one.
Remove the deep frying dish from fire and the jamuns will rise above the ghee in a minute.
Now bring the dish back to fire and on low heat fry the jamuns gently stirring constantly.
The jamuns must be gently and constantly stirred to ensure even browning on all sides.Keep turning the jamuns until they are a golden brown all over.
If the temperature of the ghee is too high then the gulab jamuns might break. The temperature should be adjusted to ensure that the gulab jamuns do not break or cook too quickly. The balls must be fried very slowly under low temperature. This will ensure complete cooking from inside and even browning.
Add the fried gulab jamuns directly into the warm syrup. They can be served warm or at room temperature.
Gulab jamuns can also be served with ice cream, kulfi or fresh cream.