by Tarla Dalal
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Rasgulla discs soaked in sweetened saffron flavoured milk. Next to rasgullas, this is the most popular Bengali sweet outside Bengal. A well made rasmalai well melt in your mouth.
- Divide the chenna into 16 equal portions and gently shape each portion into a flat round (disc) of 25 mm. (1”) diameter and 6 mm. (¼”) thickness. Take care to see that there are no cracks on the surface.
- Dust the back of a flat plate lightly with the flour and place the chenna discs on it.
- Combine the sugar and milk with 3 cups of water in a large pan approximately 200 mm. (8”) in diameter and 150 mm. (6”) in height and heat while stirring continuously till the sugar dissolves. When the syrup comes to a boil, the impurities in the sugar will begin to float on the surface, forming a grey layer.
- Heat over a medium flame to allow the grey layer to float. Do not stir at thi8s point as the layer will break and it will not clarify the syrup.
- After about 5 minutes, slowly drizzle 1 cup of water from the sides of the pan with the help of a ladle. Water added at this stage will bring down the temperature of the sugar syrup and will not allow it to boil and break the grey layer.
- Continue to simmer the syrup over a medium flame for about 10 minutes and then gently remove the grey layer using a slotted spoon.
- Bring the syrup to the boil once again and then slowly drizzle another cup of water from the sides of the pan using a ladle. Remove all the remaining impurities from the syrup, again using a slotted spoon.
- Increase the flame and boil vigorously for 1 to 2 minutes. Keep aside.
- Heat the milk in a broad non-stick pan and bring it to a boil. Add the sugar, saffron milk and cardamom powder and mix well.
- Remove from the fire.
- Mix 2 teaspoons of the plain flour with ¾ cup of water to make a flour solution. Keep aside.
- Heat the sugar syrup in a deep pan over a high flame and allow it to boil vigorously.
- When it boils, sprinkle half the flour solution in the sugar syrup and then add the chenna discs by upturning the plate on which they are kept. (Do not touch the chenna discs at this point as they are fragile).
- When the flour solution is added, a frothy layer is formed on the surface of the syrup.
- If the frothy layer begins to subside, sprinkle the remaining half portion of the flour solution.
- After this, keep on sprinkling water (minimum 1 cup) on the surface of the sugar syrup. Ensure that the syrup froths all the time while cooking the rasgulla discs.
- Cook for about 15 minutes, continuously sprinkling water to enable the froth to form.
- Check if the rasgullas are cooked. This is determined by touch. If the rasgulla springs back and retains its shape when pressed, it is cooked. Another way of checking is to drop a rasgulla disc in pan of cold water. If it sinks to the bottom, it is cooked.
- Remove from the fire.
- Transfer the rasgullas to a bowl along with 2 ladles of sugar syrup and 1 cup of water.
- Cool and chill for approximately 3 to 4 hours.
- Remove the rasgulla discs from the sugar syrup and squeeze out the excess syrup
- Place the discs in a serving bowl and top with the hot saffron flavoured milk.
- Chill for at least 2 hours.
Serve garnished with slivered pistachios.
- MANGO RASMALAI : In the above recipe, add ¼ cup mango purée to the saffron flavoured milk. Garnish with fresh mango slices.
- ANGOORI RABDI : Divide the chenna into 36 equal parts and shape each portion into a ball. Proceed as per the above recipe. Also use “Quick Rabdi” instead of the saffron flavoured milk.
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