Gulab jamun is easily the most beloved dessert of India! Be it Diwali or Holi, birthdays, anniversaries or any celebration, this sweet-dish is made for almost every festive occasion, in most of the Indian households. With Holi just round the corner, this is the perfect, easy recipe to try this week!
Gulab jamuns are spongy, ‘melt in the mouth’ round dumplings, smothered in scented sugary syrup. Traditionally, they are made using Khoya/mawa i.e evaporated milk solids that we easily get at the sweet shops in India but this is an easier version to make this dish when khoya is not available. I live in Ireland and this method works great for me with the ingredients that are readily available to me here.
Be it kids, adult or elderly, everyone loves having gulab jamuns. Give this delectable recipe a go and enjoy!
For the gulab jamuns-
1 cup skimmed milk powder
1/4 cup plain flour
A pinch of baking soda
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/4 tsp crushed cardamom seeds
For the Syrup-
1 cup sugar
1.25 cup water
A couple drops of rose water
-Let us make the sugar syrup first. In a pan, add water and sugar. Bring it to boil and stir until the sugar has dissolved. Simmer till it reaches a stringy consistency. When you take a drop of syrup between your thumb and finger, it should feel sticky! Turn off the heat and add in the rose water. Set aside.
–For the gulab jamuns– In a bowl, take your skimmed milk powder, plain flour, baking soda, crushed cardamom seeds and heavy cream. Mix it all well (Do not knead it at this point). You should get a very soft sticky mixture. Cover and set aside for about 10 minutes.
-After 10 minutes, the milk powder would have absorbed the cream and your mixture will seem a bit set. Grease your palm and knead it with soft hands till you get an absolutely smooth ball of dough. Remember- There should be no cracks in it or your gulab jamuns will end up having cracks as well. The resulting dough should be very very smooth! Also, the dough should not feel dry. If it does feel dry, add a bit of warm milk and work the dough again.
-Divide the dough into 10- 12 marble-sized equal parts and roll them into smooth round balls. Keep the size smaller as they will expand after frying and soaking in the syrup.
-Heat the oil in a frying pan on low heat. To test if the oil is the right temperature, place a small piece of dough into the oil. Oil should sizzle but it should take a few seconds to rise to the surface. If dough rises faster, oil is too hot; if dough just sits without rising, oil is not hot enough.
-Place the gulab jamuns in the frying pan one by one. Don’t over crowd them as they will expand in size later. Better to fry them in two batches!
-Now the MOST IMPORTANT step of this recipe- While frying the gulab jamuns, keep rolling the gulab jamuns constantly so that they are evenly browned. If you let them sit idle even for a couple of seconds, they will burn. Thus, they have to be rolled without any break. Fry the gulab jamuns on low until they become nice, chocolaty brown.
– Let the gulab jamuns cool off for some time before placing them in the hot sugar syrup.
– Place the gulab jamuns in the syrup. Take a tooth-pick and make little holes in your gulab jamuns so that the syrup can go inside the spongy balls. Let them sit in the syrup for at least 1 hour before serving.
-Enjoy delicious gulab jamuns hot or cold!
-Refer to my teaser video on Instagram or Facebook page to get an idea of this recipe.
-Do not knead your dough too much or with too tight a hand. Knead it softly.
-Make sure that you do not let your dough sit for too much time or it will dry out and the gulab jamuns will not be smooth or soft!
-If the gulab jamuns are fried on high heat, they will become hard and not fully cooked. Fry them on very low heat only and keep rolling them constantly.
-Refrigerate the remaining gulab jamuns uptil 4-5 days.