Mohanthal ( Mithai Cookbook)
by Tarla Dalal
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Mohanthal is a traditional mithai with the rich flavour and melt-in-the-mouth texture of ghee-roasted besan. Rose water and spices like cardamom and saffron give the sweet an enticing flavour and captivating aroma, while an assortment of slivered nuts makes the sweet richer. Popular in Rajasthan and Gujarat, this sweet is a part and parcel of the festive season. We have used regular besan for this recipe, which is easy to procure. Mohanthal can be stored at room temperature in an airtight container for around 10 days!
- Combine the saffron strands and ½ tsp warm water in a bowl, mix well and keep aside.
- Combine the besan, 3 tbsp of melted ghee and 3 tbsp of milk in a deep bowl and mix well using your fingertips till no lumps remain.
- Gently press it to even out the mixture. Cover with a lid and keep aside for 30 minutes.
- Break the lumps lightly with your fingertips and sieve it using a sieve with big holes. Keep aside.
- Heat the ghee in a brass vessel on a high flame for 1 minute.
- Add the sieved besan mixture, mix well and cook on a medium flame for 5 minutes, or till the mixture turns brown in colour, while stirring continuously.
- Remove from the flame and keep aside to cool for 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, combine the sugar and 1 cup of water in a deep non-stick pan, mix well and cook on a high flame for 2 minutes, while stirring continuously.
- Lower the flame to slow, when it boils, add 2 tsp of milk, mix well and cook on a medium flame for 3 to 4 minutes, while stirring occasionally. Remove the dirt that floats on the sugar mixture and discard it.
- Lower the flame to slow and cook for 7 minutes, or till the syrup is of 1. 5 thread consistency, while stirring occasionally.
- Add the rose water and mix well. Keep aside.
- Add the cardamom powder, saffron-water mixture and the prepared sugar syrup to the cooled besan mixture, mix well and stir for approx. 3 to 4 minutes, while stirring continuously or till the mixture cools.
- Add the remaining 3 tbsp of milk and mix well, refer handy tip.
- Grease a 200 mm. (8”) diameter thali with oil and pour the mixture into it and spread it evenly using a flat spatula.
- Sprinkle the pistachio and almond slivers evenly over it and pat it lightly.
- Keep it aside to cool completely for 1 to 2 hours.
- Cut into equal sized pieces and serve or store in an air-tight container and use as required.
- At step no 13, 3 tbsp of milk should be added only if the mixture has thickened a bit and not smooth enough to pour into a thali.
- This stays fresh for 10 days when stored in an air-tight container at room temperature.
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