Gulab Jamun 🌟

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Gulab jamuns and I have been in a long term relationship since forever. If any one ever asks me what is my top favorite mithai of all time then without hesitation I will say Gulab jamun. The delicious dough balls drenched in sugary, sticky syrup and perfumed with kewra, rose water and cardamom occupy a big portion of my heart (and stomach whenever I get my hands on them). As a child, this used to be the first mithai I would attack in a sweets box, the next being chum chum. I don’t like a lot of sweets as I’m more of a enjoying savory kind of person but Gulab jamuns are the sweets I love in every form – the extremely dark ones, the cream filled ones, the big plump ones, the khoya ones! Yumm!

Ever since I moved to Philly, I’ve not eaten a single Gulab jamun as there’s no place we can find a decent one. I have kept my cravings in check all these years but this Corona life is making me more adventurous in my kitchen. Yesterday I remembered how my mother used to make Gulab jamuns at home sometimes and the taste was so fresh and delicious. Finally, I folded up my sleeves and just made my own. The process itself was not bad at all. The only thing you need when making these beautiful sweets is patience while frying them. You have to start heating the oil when your dough is ready. As the oil heats, make all the dough balls and then slowly drop them in medium hot oil. Make sure the pot is NOT overcrowded with the Gulab jamuns. The sugar syrup needs to be warm and not hot or cold when you drop your fried Gulab jamuns in them. So make sure you make your sugar syrup before you even take your dough ingredients out so that the hot syrup has had time to cool down slightly. Hope these tips help you in making the most perfect Gulab jamuns ever!

Gulab jamuns

Makes around 12 -15 balls

Ingredients:

For the sugar syrup:

  • 3 cups water
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 cardamom pods
  • 1 tbsp kewra water
  • 1 tsp rose water

For the dough:

  • 1 cup Nido milk powder
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 heaped (not leveled) tbsp of semolina (suji)
  • 1 tsp baking powder (leveled)
  • 1 tbsp butter, melted
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream

Method:

For the sugar syrup: Whisk water and sugar together in a wide saucepan and put it on medium high heat. Add in the cardamom pods and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Add in kewra water and rose water. Turn of flame. Keep warm.

For the dough balls: Heat oil for deep frying on low heat in a wide pan. Sift and mix all the dry ingredients. Add the beaten egg, melted butter and knead well. Mixture will be sticky. Now start adding 2 tbsp of whipping cream slowly at a time. The mixture will get stickier as you keep kneading. Adding more cream will make it smooth and not as sticky. Don’t add all the whipping cream if you feel the dough has reached a good consistency. It shouldn’t be too sticky and balls made must be smooth with no cracks. Make the dough balls taking 1 1/2 tsp dough at a time. Drop them in medium hot oil. Leave them to fry. Do not stir them. After 7-8 mins. start stirring and make sure they are getting browned from all directions. The frying takes atleast 15-20 minutes. Be patient and don’t increase the heat to expedite the frying process. Once all the balls have reached their perfect color, drain oil from each of them with the help of a slotted spoon and drop them in the warm syrup. Do not over crowd the pot. Do not stir. Shake the pot to move the Gulab jamuns around. Leave them in syrup till all the syrup is absorbed. Garnish with pistachios and shredded coconut.

Enjoy!

With love,

Leena

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