October 19, 2017

7 cup, actually 6 cup barfi this Diwali

7er 6cup barfi

Happy Diwali everyone. Lots of sweets, fun and joy on this festival of lights. 

I missed the boat when 7 cup barfi was all the rage. My introduction came this summer when a cousin brought some and it was so good! I immediately made a mental note to try it this year. And what perfect time to try it than Diwali, right?

The process is straightforward and after all the stirring it was rewarding to put this in your mouth even when it is not cooled all the way.

I made a few rounds mostly to tweak the sugar amount and to try taking coconut out with other ingredients. I ended up with almond meal and about 2 cups and 2 tbspoon of sugar.

I would have taken sugar out more but was not sure of if the barfi would set.

Ingredients:
(makes about 10-12medium sized barfis)

1 cup besan/chickpea flour
1 cup ghee
1 cup milk
3/4 cup almond meal/ ground almonds
1/4 cup fresh shredded coconut
2 cup 2 tbspoon sugar

Method:

7 cup barfi for Diwali
Sieve the besan and make sure it is smooth.Take some ghee and coat a plate you would be using later. Set it aside.

Take 2-3 tspoon of ghee and roast the chickpea flour till the raw smell disappears.

7 cup barfi for Diwali
Take a thick bottomed pan and add the milk and sugar. Mix till it starts bubbling over. Then add the ghee, and start adding in the besan/checkpea flour, almond meal and the coconut slowly few tbspoons at a time.

It will be quite watery. Don't worry it will start to thicken soon.

7 cup barfi for Diwali
Keep stirring as soon as it started to thicken. Make sure there are no lumps or sticking at the bottom.

7 cup barfi for Diwali
Once it starts leaving the sides and comes together, take it off the heat and out it on the ghee-coated plate. Use a spatula to flatten the mixture and then let it cool. Cut it in squares or diamond shape and it's ready.

7 cup barfi for Diwali
Enjoy

October 02, 2017

Shubho Bijoya with rajbhog

Bengali sweet Rajbhog

I haven't been in India for durga pujo for many years now, but pujo still revolves around food, friends adda and happiness no matter where. Shubho Bijoya and Happy Dushera. I hope you had a wonderful festive season too.

I try to make something special during this season and this year decided to tackle rajbhog or as my kids call it - giant rasgulla.

There were many recipes I saw that involved adding food color, filling the rajbhog with mawa, or dry fruits. Instead I have tried to keep the recipe simple mostly for kids and for me. 

I tried it a few times with a few variations before posting.

Here is my cheat sheet.

I make homemade chana/paneer.

Don't let the chana/paneer sit out for two long. Mix it while it still has some moisture.

Mix some saffron and sugar in the chana/paneer.

Make sure the sugar syrup is bubbling nicely when the chana/paneer balls are in.

Ingredients:
(makes 10-12)
1/2 gallon whole milk
juice of 1 lemon
1 tspoon suji
1 tspoon flour
1 tspoon sugar
few strands of saffron

For syrup
21/2 cups of water + 1 cup of warm water
1 cup sugar
few strands of saffron
4-5 cardamom
1 tspoon rose water (optional)

Method:
Heat the milk in a deep bottomed pan till it  boils over then add in the juice of the lemon. Keep it on heat till milk separates.

Bengali sweet Rajbhog
Wash the chana well to get any excess smell out and strain it in a cheesecloth and hang it for 1-2 hours to drain excess water.

Bengali sweet Rajbhog
Then take the chana/paneer and mix in the saffrons, semolina/suji, flour and sugar and mix it well for a good 5-7 minutes, till it all come together smoothly.

Bengali sweet Rajbhog
Divide the mix into equal 10-12 parts. Then take each part, mix it in your hand and make a smooth ball. Repeat for each part. Know that the rajbhog will double in size during boiling.

Making sugar syrup:
Take a deep thich bottomed pan and add 1 cup sugar in 2 1/2 cups water. Once the sugar dissolves add in the saffron, cardamom, and the rose water. Let is boil for about 5-6 minutes till it is not so watery.

Add in the chana/paneer balls in the boiling sugar syrup and close the lid. Let it boil for 15-20 minutes. In the middle, you will have to add the extra 1 cup warm water, because the syrup should not get thick. It's consistency is important.

Keep the lid closed otherwise.

Bengali sweet Rajbhog
Let it cool preferably overnight before serving.

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