Ras malai is right up there with gulab jaman when it comes to desi desserts. The creaminess draws you in from the get go. This is another dessert that I was very surprised to learn that you can make at home with professional results.
Now, there are two ways of making ras malai. This is the easier method. I feel like ras malai in Pakistan is made using this method, with Nido (milk powder) as the main ingredient. The other (Indian) ras malai, quite close to the Bengali rasgullah, is made with cottage cheese. That is a more labor intensive method. Comparatively, this is a piece of cake! As for the taste, there is a slight difference, so it’s really up to you to decide which one you prefer.
If you’re short on time but want to make a show-stopping dessert, then go for this recipe! Everyone loves a good ras malai. I think there are two things that are crucial for making good ras malai. The texture of the ras malai, of course; it should be soft and spongy, and should have soaked up all the milk and secondly, the sweetness of the sheera or milk syrup. There is nothing worse than over sweet desserts, which is, sadly, mostly the case with desi desserts especially in restaurants.
One bite, and you’re choking with the poisonous sugar level. I don’t like dessert that way. It should be just sweet enough. So, that’s the goal here, hope you enjoy it!
Just bring the milk syrup ingredients to a simmer.
Meanwhile, make the dough for the balls.
Quickly shape it into equal sized balls.
Drop them, altogether, into the boiling milk.
After you cover and cook them, a miracle happens!
Transfer to a serving dish and chill before serving. Oh, and don’t be like me and forget to add the nuts.
- 1 cup Nido
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tbsp flour
- 1 tbsp oil
- 4½ cups whole milk
- ½ cup sugar
- ¼ tsp green cardamom powder
- a few sprigs of saffron (optional)
- Put the ingredients for the milk syrup in a pot and bring to a simmer.
- Meanwhile, mix all the dry ingredients for the ras malai balls together.
- Slowly and lightly knead in the beaten egg. Form a ball with the dough.
- Working quickly, make small, equal sized balls and set them on a plate. (I use a melon baller to measure out the dough.)
- Bring the milk to a boil and drop the balls in, all together.
- Cover and let it simmer for 10-15 minutes until the balls are cooked through.
- Take off the heat. Let it come to room temperature, then carefully lift the balls and transfer to a serving dish. Pour the remaining milk into the dish.
- Chill for at least 4 hours.
- Garnish with chopped almonds and pistachios and serve.
- This is best made a day ahead. Letting it sit overnight really helps the ras malai balls to absorb the milk syrup.
- Make sure to check that the balls are cooked through before turning off the heat. You can cut one in half to check.
- Do not add any water or milk to the dough. It will result in a hard center.
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