Saturday, November 7, 2015

Gulaab Jaamun - Dumplings in Saffron-Cardamom Syrup (गुलाब जामुन)


Happy Holidays!

Happy Deepaawali! - (शुभ दिपावलीको शुखद उपलक्षमा हार्दिक मंगलमय शुभकामना)
Happy Tihaar and Bhai-tikaa! - (तिहार, भाई-टिका को शुभकामना)
Happy Bhintunaa Greetings! - (भिन्तुना शुभकामना)
Happy Chat Parba! - (छत पर्बको उपलक्षमा हार्दिक शुभकामना)



Tihaar - Bhai-tikaa (तिहार, भाई-टिका) countdown begins.....(Five-day festival - November 8-13, 2015) Here are some Tihaar-Bhai-tikaa classics, sumptuous sweets and savories, you have been craving for.

For a grand tour of the "Traditional Sweets of Nepal", please check the link below


The Traditional Sweets of Nepal - (Part 1 of 4)
The Traditional Sweets of Nepal - (Part 2 of 4)
The Traditional Sweets of Nepal - (Part 3 of 4)
The Traditional Sweets of Nepal - (Part 4 of 4)



As we get ready to celebrate our festivals this fall, I would like to share my favorite recipe of Gulaab Jaamun (dumplings in saffron-cardamom syrup)

A very popular dessert, gulaab jaamun (गुलाब जामुन), also called gup-chup (गुप चुप) or laal-mohan (लाल मोहन), are round friend dumplings soaked in saffron-cardamom syrup.  They resemble small reddish-brown plums and have a soft, spongy texture.  Gulaab jaamun are made for special occasions, holidays, religious festivals, and wedding ceremonies.  Traditionally, they are made from khuwaa (thickened-reduced milk), but this is a simplified recipe.  They are served warm or at room temperature, and can be served alone or with beverages, fruit, or yogurt to tone down the sweetness and richness.

Ingredients

1/2 teaspoon saffron threads
4 cups sugar
6 green cardamom pods, crushed - seeds of 4 green cardamon pods, coarsely ground with a mortar and pestle
2 1/2 cups nonfat powdered milk
1/2 cup all-purpose white flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted

3/4 cup whole milk, or as needed
1/4 cup raw pistachios, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup raw almonds, coarsely chopped
3 to 4 cups vegetable oil

Gently crush the saffron with a mortar and pestle.  Dissolve in 1 tablespoon of water and set aside.

In a wide saucepan, combine the sugar, 6 whole cardamom pods, and 4 cups of water and bring to boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until the sugar has dissolved, about 2 minutes.  Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until the mixture has slightly thickened, about 5 minutes.  Remove the pan from the heat, stir in saffron-infused water, and set it aside, covered.

In a medium-sized bowl, combine the powdered milk, flour, and baking soda and mix well by hand.  Stir in butter and mix thoroughly.  Gradually add the milk, a little at a time, to form a dough that holds together.  Knead the dough until it is soft and pliable and can be easily molded into small balls.  If the dough is too sticky, add some flour, if it feels too firm, add a little water, and knead it some more. Cover the bowl and set aside at room temperature for 20 to 25 minutes.

To make the filling, combine the pistachios, almonds and ground cardamom seeds in a small bowl and mix well.  set aside.

When the dough is well rested, remove it from the bowl, place it on a flat surface, and knead it again for 1 minute.  Divide the dough into 25 equal pieces.  Roll each piece into a small ball.  Make an indention in the ball, place a pinch of the filling in the center, close the dough around the filling, and re-roll to smooth it.  If there are cracks, seal them and re-roll into smooth ball.  Cover the balls with a damp kitchen towel and set aside until ready to fry.

Heat the oil in a medium heavy skillet over medium-high heat until it reaches 350 degree to 375 degree F. Test the readiness of the oil by placing a small piece of dough into the hot oil.  If it bubbles and slowly rises to the surface, it is ready.  Drop four or five balls at a time into the hot oil.  They will sink first to the bottom and then will rise to the surface slowly.  Fry them gently, turning, until they are reddish-brown on all sides, 3 to 5 minutes. The most important point to remember is not to cook the gulaab jaamun over high heat, or else the outside will burn very fast, the inside will remain uncooked and doughy.  When they are dropped into the warm syrup they will collapse into flattened shaped balls.

Remove the fried balls from the pan with a slotted spoon and drain the excess oil. Gently submerge the balls in the warm syrup, and let them soak for at least 2 hours, until they are soft and spongy.  Serve the gulaab jaamun warm or at room temperature.  Store them (in the syrup) in the refrigerator for up to 1 week, but bring them back to room temperature or warm them before serving.

Makes 25 balls.

Let's begin making Gulaab Jaamun - combining the powdered milk, flour, and baking soda and mixing well
Smooth dough is ready
Dividing the dough into 25 equal pieces and rolling each piece into a small ball.
The dough balls will double in size after frying and soaking in sugar syrup
Fry them gently, turning, until they are reddish-brown on all sides. The most important point to remember is not to fry them over high heat, or else the outside will burn very fast, the inside will remain uncooked and doughy.
Gently submerge the balls in the warm syrup, and let them soak for at least 2 hours, until they are soft and spongy.
Serve the gulaab jaamun warm or at room temperature. You can garnish with chopped pistachios or almond slices for decorated look before serving.

Store them (in the syrup) in the refrigerator for up to 1 week, but bring them back to room temperature or warm them before serving.




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6 comments:

  1. I might try making it and happy tihar to you! hope you have an amazing one.

    Nami

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  2. It was good checking your blog in London during Tihar when I happened to be. I managed to buy some sel-roti at a a Nepalese grocery by special order for my daughter's Luxmi Puja. Did not find Gulab Jamun though! Cooking is not for me perhaps my daughter can try it some time.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you Subodh for the great comment and looking out my site. I hope you will keep checking my new entries! Namaste!

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  4. नेपाल ने 500 रुपये और 2000 रुपये के नए भारतीय नोटों पर पाबंदी लगाई
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