Serving - 12 to 15 Gulab jamuns
Time required to prepare - 30 minutes (including 10 minutes of cooking time)
Category - Vegetarian
Mawa(chikna khoya / hariyali khoya) 200 gms. Mava is ”dried whole milk/thickened milk”. Read more about mava in this wikipedia article.
Refined flour or Maida 50 gms
Sugar 300 gms
Water 150 ml
Ghee(clarified butter) / oil for deep frying (Traditionally ghee is used. But you can use oil also. You can also mix both ghee and oil).
Cardamom powder – 1/8th teaspoon
Rose essence – 3 to 4 drops
Sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) – 1/4th teaspoon
How to make sugar syrup
In a large pan, add water and sugar and bring to boil. Once the sugar dissolves, simmer for 3 to 4 minutes.
Important instruction/tip to check if the syrup is ready: Hold a drop of the syrup between your index finger and your thumb and check if it slightly sticky. If not, continue simmering and switch off the flame once it is ready.
Add rose essence stir and set aside.
How to make gulab jamun balls
Mix mawa, refined flour(Maida), cardamom powder and baking soda. Knead for 5 minutes using the heel of your hand until the dough is uniform and smooth. This is a very important step. You have to ensure that there are no lumps left. Make 12 to 15 equal parts out of the dough. Apply ghee/oil on your hand and roll the dough until it takes the shape of a ball. Keep rolling until the ball has no cracks. This is a very important step. If there are cracks, then the ball will break and will lose its shape when it is being fried in oil. Heat ghee or oil in a frying pan. Once the oil or ghee is hot, reduce the flame to low.
Important instruction/tip: Drop a small ball of dough into the oil/ghee to test if the oil/ghee is hot enough for the jamuns to be fried. This also tests if the dough has been well prepared. It should retain its shape. If it breaks or disintegrates, then it means that the khoya has more moisture(It depends on the quality of the Khoya). In order to balance this, you have to add a couple of tablespoons of flour( maida) and knead again. Repeat this until the shape is retained
Gently put dough balls into the oil/ghee for frying. Do not over crowd the pan with dough balls. Deep fry these dough balls carefully. Ensure that ladle does not touch the balls till the entire surface of the ball starts turning brown . Instead, gently push the oil towards the balls and gently pour the oil over the balls. Continue frying till the color of jamuns changes to golden to slightly dark brown. Do not burn.
Important instruction/tip: You have to cook this on low flame only. Otherwise the inside of the jamun will remain uncooked even though the crust may turn brown and appear well fried. If you cut open such jamuns, you will notice that the inside is hard Take the jamuns out of the pan after draining the oil.
Continue frying the rest of the dough balls in the similar way. Drop the fried jamuns into the warm sugar syrup (Ensure that the syrup is not boiling hot). Leave the jamuns in the syrup until they sink. This might take about 3 hours for the jamuns to soak up the syrup.
Gulab jamuns are now ready to be served. They can be served hot or cold.