Monday, 14 March 2011

Soft as they look...

Last week, a bengali neighbour of mine was seriously ill. Getting unwell with two toddlers to deal with, especially when the husband cant take off from work and theres no one around you can count on, is certainly hard. My little son has made me realise this helpless situation quite often during the last two years.

At first, I wasnt sure whether offering a help in the kitchen would do her any favour, but her excited and happy voice on phone right after having the meal finished was a clear indicator that we can continue with this mutual favour even in the future as well :)

I had made seekh kebab curry, black white-eyed beans and ghulab jamun for them. And her husband was so smitten with the taste of the sweet balls that she could hardly wait to try on them in her own kitchen.

So, here comes the recipe for you, my dearest Nazneen :

Ghulab Jamun

1 cup dry milk powder
1 tbs plain flour
1tsp baking powder
1 1/3 tsp samolina
2 tbs oil
1 egg
Oil for deep frying

For syrup:
1 1/2 cups sugar
3 cups water

To garnish (optional):

grated coconut
silver leaves

For making the syrup, stir sugar in water and then cook on medium heat for 15 minutes until completely dissolved. Turn off the heat and cover the syrup with a lid to keep warm.
Heat the oil on low-medium. Combine together the milk powder, baking powder, flour and samolina with hand. Add the oil and then fold the beaten egg as well. You will get a bit of sticky dough. Tip: DO NOT overmix or knead.

Make a small ball ( depending on what size you want to have - one tsp of mixure is enough to have a smaller jamun but if you prefer the bigger ones, one tbs will do the job ) with greased palms.
Slip in the ball immediately into the hot oil. Continue doing the same with rest of the dough. Make sure your pan is big enough to fry all the balls at once.
Tip: My experience of making all balls at once and then frying them in two shifts was not successful. Make sure to tranfer each dough ball immediately into the oil.

Fry the balls on medium heat and keep on rotating them with a frying spoon until evenly golden on all sides.
Tip: Temperature plays an important role here as this will ensure that the jamuns are completely cooked from inside and get an even browning outside.

Transfer immediately into the prepared warm sugar syrup and cover the syrup pan with a lid for 5 minutes. Transfer into the serving dish and garnish with grated coconut or silver leaves.  I usually serve them a day later (love the texture they get after a days rest). They can be served warm or at room temperature.



  1. Thank you for posting the recipes especially the Gulabjamuns (my favourite). I found a lot of them on net but I will try this one because I am sure this will be perfect.

  2. fatima,i made gulab jamun.they looked yummy but from inside,they were raw nd hard:(
    i think,reason could be baking powder or i made all balls nd then all put together in the oil and it took time.
    Although i fried them on medium heat,but they started to turn brown quickly.
    What do u think?

  3. @yasmeenYasmeen, I think its because you made alll the balls at once first and then fried in oil. As I have already written in the recipe tips that my experiece of doing this wasnt good either. Important is to do these two steps parallel. Make a ball and directly shift into the medium hot oil. Fry on low medium otherwise they might remain uncooked from inside and get a darker surface quickly. Hope the tips help:)

  4. jazakAllah khair:)

  5. Alhmduliallah ,second try was really good:)

  6. dear wht is samolina?

  7. @Anonymous Hi dear Anonymous, Semolina is a coarsed flour ground from hard durum wheat. Its usually used for making sweets, pasta or breads etc. I dont know where exactly are you from, wouldve told you the exact term in your language:)Ever heard of sooji, Grieß,samid or semoule??