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Saturday, November 27, 2010

Ras malai ( cheese balls soaked in milk )

Cooking time Required: 40 minutes
Cost of Preparation: 50-60 rupees

Ingredients: milk ( 1 litre ), lemon ( 1 no , one can also use sour curd for curdling the milk ), maida ( flour , 1-2 tsp ), sugar ( 1/2 cup ), vanilla essence ( few drops ), nuts ( cashews/almonds) for garnishing.

Cooking: Boil half of the milk in a saucepan. Squeeze the lemon over the milk. Allow to boil till the chenna ( cheese/paneer ) separates from the water.

Allow to cool for 5 mins. Strain the water .

Transfer the chenna to a mixing bowl. Add maida .Mix and knead the mixture till it turns into a soft dough . There should be no grains felt when the chenna is rubbed in between the fingers. Make small balls/ medium sized flat circles out of it.

Heat water and half of the sugar in a wok . Allow to boil. Put in the chenna balls/circles and add 5-6 drops of vanilla essence. Cover with a lid and boil for 10-12 mins.

The balls will rise to the top when they are cooked and again sink to the bottem once they absorb the sugar solution. Remove from the fire and allow to cool.

Boil the remaining milk in a wok along with the sugar for 10-15 minutes. Allow to thicken slightly .

Allow to cool down. Remove the chenna balls from the sugar solution and add to the thickened milk.

Put into the refrigerator to chill. Garnish with chopped cashews/almonds and serve.

Tip: One can also use cardamon/rose essence instead of vanilla essence for the flavouring.
Use full cream milk instead of skinned milk for softer and tastier chenna balls.

Ras malai consists of sugary, cream to yellow-colored balls (or flattened balls) of paneer soaked in malai (clotted cream) flavored with cardamom.It originated in what is now coastal Orissa (source Wiki).

In some places in orissa the small chenna balls soaked in thickened milk are also called 'Kheer sagar'.

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