Posted by fourclankitchen on May 2, 2010
The name means rose (colored) berries when translated from Hindi. As things that are bad for your waistline, this is as bad as it gets: a ball of fried milk-based dough doused in saffron-scented sugar syrup. If I am putting you off, this desert is not for you. But if you are looking for the ultimate soul food: warm, gooey, sweet, syrupy and perfumed with the loveliest of spices (saffron, cardamom), gulab jamun is for you.
As always with Indian food, there are many versions of gulab jamun. Some require paneer (Indian cheese) and milk solids (khoya), ingredients that many don’t have on hand. Others insert a whole peppercorn at the center of the gulab jamun (this could be interesting). The one I am posting here is made with ingredients everyone is likely to have on hand and can be made in 15 min.
Gulab Jamun (adapted from 660 Curries by Raghavan Iyer).
1¼ cup sugar
3 cups water
7 tbsp powdered milk
3 tsp flour + a pinch of basking soda (the original recipe calls for 3 tsp self-rising flour)
1 tsp semolina (cream of wheat)
3 tsp butter, melted
cardamom powder- a couple of pinches
pinch of saffron, crushed in a mortar or between your fingers
milk to mix
oil for deep frying
The original recipe also call for 4 drops of rose water. I dislike this stuff in food, so I have omitted it.
Put the sugar and water in a heavy bottomed pan on a medium flame. Dissolve the sugar, then bring the syrup to a boil, 2-3 min. Add the cardamom powder and crushed saffron and set aside. Put powdered milk, flour, baking soda, cream of wheat, butter in a bowl. Mix well with a little milk to make a smooth, pliable dough. Divide into 15-20 equal portions, and roll each portion into a smooth ball. Heat the oil and gently deep fry the balls until golden brown. Remove with slotted spoon, drain on a paper towel and put into the syrup. Bring the syrup to a boil, then remove from the heat. Serve warm.