Gulab Jamun is a very popular Indian dessert. Gulab Jamun is a milk solid-based sweet from the Indian subcontinent, and a type of Mithai, popular in India. This iconic Indian mithai takes just 15 minutes and are easy to make with milk powder. The jamuns are fried in ghee and soaked in a syrup flavored with cardamom, rosewater, and saffron. Serve them at festivals, and weddings, and celebrate other special occasions.
This Gulab Jamun usually makes on big festive days. Especially on Diwali, Gulab Jamun and other sweets are made. Many people describe them as milk-based donuts which are fried and soaked in syrup with flavored cardamom, saffron, and rose water.
Gulab Jamun is traditionally made with khoya, which are milk solids from simmering milk until the water evaporates. Unfortunately, khoya is quite difficult to come by in the U.S., and it takes some patience to make at home.
I am not a big fan of Gulab jamun but cooking is my passion and i am always a learner. I made few times with @gits packets but i was so curious to learn from scratch. Finally, I could able to create the recipe of this juicy soft Gulab jamun after a few attempts.
WHAT ARE GULAB JAMUNS?
Gulab Jamun is an Indian mithai traditionally made out of milk solids, or khoya. It’s fried and then soaked in syrup flavored with saffron, cardamom, and rosewater. In recent years, milk powder has been used as a substitute for khoya and still achieves the soft, juicy Jamun we all know and love.
The word Gulab refers to the rose water-scented syrup, with origins from the Persian words gol (flower) and āb (water). Jamun is reminiscent of the Indian fruit called Jamun or black plum, which has a similar shape and size to the little desserts.
So first thing first many people use Ghee to fry this Gulab Jamun. I haven’t used ghee here but traditionally ghee is used to fry this. vegetable oil is so perfect too. In short, you can use whatever you are comfortable with.
The sugar syrup for gulab jamun is always a 1-to-1 ratio of water to sugar. Saffron, cardamom pods, and rosewater make this syrup especially flavorful.
I would recommend using whole cardamom pods that are slightly smashed, and not ground cardamom. The whole pods will release a ton of flavor into the syrup.
The Gulab Jamun dough is made of a total of 6 ingredients.
Milk Powder: The purpose of the milk powder is to mimic khoya, or milk solids, and paneer which are more traditional for making soft gulab jamun. However, khoya is not readily available in the U.S. and is arduous to make at home, so milk powder is a quick hack to make jamuns that are just as soft and scrumptious.
All-Purpose Flour: All-purpose flour helps in binding the jamuns.
Sooji Or Semolina: This gives a soft texture to the Jamuns.
Baking Powder: Make the dough light and airy.
Ghee – Used for frying and to hydrate the dough. Substitute the ghee in the dough with unsalted butter. Substitute the ghee for frying with a neutral oil, or half oil and half ghee.
Whole Milk: Rehydrates the milk powder and softens the dough so that there aren’t any cracks.
How To Make The Rosewater Sugar Syrup?
For this syrup, you have to make sure the proper ratio of sugar and water is 1:1. In a Pan take 1 part of sugar and 1 part of water. Turn the flame On. Bring the water to a boil and stir until the sugar melts. Add lightly crushed cardamom seeds and saffron strings.
How to make Gulab Jamun:
Get started on making the jamun dough while the syrup simmers. To make the dough for gulab jamun, start by combining the milk powder, baking powder, and all-purpose flour in a mixing bowl. Give it a whisk.
Then, create a well in the middle and pour the ghee into the center. Combine the ghee with dry ingredients using your hands. You’ll end up with a sandy textured flour that’ll start clumping a tiny bit.
Next, add the milk one tablespoon at a time, gently kneading the dough until it comes together into a smooth and soft dough ball. There shouldn’t be any cracks and the texture won’t be crumbly. It should also be well-hydrated without sticking to your fingers.
It’s not necessary to fully knead the dough here either, because we’re not looking for any gluten formation! We’re just looking for a soft, smooth dough.
Getting the right texture for the dough is incredibly important! If there are cracks in the dough, the Jamun will completely fall apart while they’re deep fried. If the dough is too hard, it won’t soak up syrup all the way to the center.
Make the small medium sizes of balls from the dough. Ensure the balls are smooth with no cracks. In a meantime start heating ghee or oil on low medium flame. Check the oil or ghee temperature by adding a small piece of dough. Start frying the balls. Fry them until they turn golden dark brown. Take them out on a paper towel. Repeat the Process.
After all, the balls are fried, dump them in warm sugar syrup. Let it soak for 5 to 6 hours. After 5 to 6 hours serve this Gulab jamun in a serving bowl.
TIPS FOR THE BEST GULAB JAMUN
- Overworking the dough will result in more gluten formation than we want or need. The dough should just come together until it’s soft and smooth.
- Moisture content in the dough. If the Jamun dough is dry or cracking, there’s not enough moisture from the ghee or milk. The Jamun dough needs to have enough moisture for it to expand while it’s frying
- The syrup is sticky. The syrup for gulab jamun should reach one-string consistency before adding the Jamun to it. This means that if you stick your pointer finger into the syrup and press it against your thumb, then slowly pull your fingers apart you should see one string of syrup. If it’s too watery, the jamuns won’t hold their shape and can become soggy. If it’s too thick, the jamuns may not soak enough syrup to the center. You’ll also want to make sure the syrup is still warm when transferring the jamuns. Avoid using any type of pan that retains too much heat, otherwise, the syrup will thicken too much and crystallize.
- Perfect temperature for the frying ghee. Check the temperature of the ghee before frying by adding a small piece of dough to the hot ghee. It should hit the bottom, then slowly start to rise up while it bubbles. It shouldn’t brown immediately. Then the ghee is hot enough for frying. If it’s not hot enough, the Jamun will absorb the ghee and it’ll be really soggy. If it’s too hot, the jamun will crack and the outside will brown before the center gets a chance to cook. Stir the ghee once the jamun are added so they get an even golden brown.
I would love to see my recipe creation. tag me on Instagram @flavors_ofmykitchen.
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