So, we make a dough with milk powder and flour, then make balls from it and deep fry. Next we soak it in sugar syrup. As ”sinful” as the process sounds, this is a dessert that is loved by most people. The soft balls and the sugar essence in each bite will certainly leave the tongue craving for more. Like with all traditional festival recipes, this one was also tried multiple times. I made it a couple of times completely from scratch a year ago by making even khova at home. Sadly, both failed and I ended up with hard jamuns. That weekend was miserable with two back-to-back failures and it took a year for me to think about gulab jamun again and this time I decided to use a little help and go with milk powder instead of making khova at home. Also, the packets of milk powder were desperately calling out to be used.
We learn from mistakes and I put that to good use this year and ended up with soft gulab jamuns that everyone loved. In fact, I was caught admiring these beauties now and then because they looked so perfect to me . Patience is the key for this dessert. Enjoy Diwali with this yummy dessert. Off to the recipe.
In this Indian festival dessert, balls made from milk powder dough are deep fried and soaked in sugar syrup.
- milk powder - 1/2 cup - I used non-fat instant milk powder
- all purpose flour - 1/4 cup
- ghee - 1 tbsp
Homemade ghee can be made following this link
- baking soda - 1/4 tsp
- milk - 1/4 cup - more or less as needed to make the dough
- For sugar syrup
- sugar - 1.25 - 1.5 cups - adjust to the desired sweetness
- water - 2 cups
- cardamom - 2 pods
1. If the milk powder is coarse, powder it finely using a coffee grinder or Indian mixie.
2. Take the milk powder, all purpose flour and baking soda in a bowl. Mix well.
3. Add ghee to it and mix well.
4. Add milk little by little and make a dough. The dough will be very sticky. Knead it for a few minutes.
5. Meanwhile, get the sugar syrup going by taking water, sugar and cardamom pods in a vessel. Bring to a boil and simmer for a few minutes. Turn the stove off. I made sure the syrup was warm when the balls were added.
6. Form small balls from the dough. As long as the balls do not have open cracks we are good. Try to keep the balls as smooth as possible.
7. Heat oil and deep fry the balls. Add 5-6 balls at a time. The ball should stay in the base of the vessel for at least a minute before rising to the surface. Keep turning the balls to cook them evenly. It took around 5 - 6 minutes for a batch.
8. Drain the balls and allow to cool for a few minutes before adding to the sugar syrup.
9. Add the balls to the warm syrup and wait for at least an hour for the balls to absorb the syrup and swell up. Then they are ready to be eaten.
1. Temperature of the oil is very important. If it is too hot, the inside will not be cooked and the ball will brown very fast. The temperature is right when the ball that is added to the oil stays at the bottom for close to a minute before rising up to the surface.
2. Do not overcrowd the vessel. Each ball needs attention, so add 5 – 6 per batch.
3. Once it rises up, keep turning it to evenly cook on all sides. It took 5-6 minutes for each batch to cook. Do not try to speed it up and keep the heat low always.
4. Keep the sugar syrup warm when the balls are added to it.
5. Remember to make small balls from the dough because they will swell up during deep frying and further more after absorbing the sugar syrup.
6. Allow the balls to cool for a few minutes before adding to syrup.
Last Year : Roasting Pumpkin Seeds
1. The milk powder I had was very coarse and I ran it through the blender.
2. Fine milk powder ready.3. Take milk powder and all purpose flour in a bowl.4. Add baking soda. Mix.5. Add ghee.6. Mix it all together.7. Pour milk little by little and form a dough.
8. It will be very sticky.
9. Meanwhile get the sugar syrup going. Take sugar and water in a vessel. Add cardamom to it and bring it to a boil. Simmer for a few minutes and turn off the stove. I made sure the syrup was warm when the balls were added.10. Knead the dough for a few minutes. 11. Make small balls. Try to keep the balls smooth. It is OK if the balls are not completely smooth. As long as they do not have open cracks we are good. Remember the balls double in size.12. Heat oil and deep fry the balls. Do not overcrowd the vessel. Add 5 -6 balls at a time. The ball needs to stay in the bottom of the vessel for at least a minute before it rises to the surface. Keep turning it once it comes to the surface to evenly cook all sides. It took around 5 – 6 minutes for each batch to be cooked. Keeping the temperate low is very important. Otherwise the outside will be cooked and the inside will be powdery. Not a pleasant jamun. I have been there and I know how that tastes .13. The ball has a nice brown color. 14. Allow the balls to cool for a few minutes before adding to syrup.15. Add the balls to the warm syrup.16. They swell up even further in about half an hour. They look so cute .I like to share .
Linking to Diwali Bash.