My exploration with Indian desserts continues. Excluding the mango lassi that I made, the desserts this week are a bit more technical than last week. They are more technical because they require you to understand the temperature, consistency and viscosity of your ingredients. Making these sweets are much like making candies and confections. I want to stress that I am an amateur when it comes to making Indian sweets. I did make mistakes, I overcooked my Mysore pak the first time, but I persevered and tried it again. My one key advice when making any of these or any other Indian desserts is to use the best ingredients possible. These desserts contain very few ingredients, so the quality of what you put in makes all the difference. I have also found it helpful to make my own ghee, that way you know the quality and freshness of the butter that is going into your dessert. Here are the four Indian desserts I tried my hand at this week:
A simple and yummy mango lassi. If you have never tried a lassi, it is a simple a yogurt and milk based drink it can be either sweet or salty. I prefer the sweet kind and with the addition of mango it is just plain good.
Mysore pak is a traditional sweet, which originates from… you guessed it, Mysore, India. It is made from besan (chick pea flour), sugar, ghee and cardamom. I found that the most helpful tips for making this from the knowledgeable Indira of Mahanandi, who has a wonderful blog and is clearly an expert at Indian cuisine.
Coconut burfi made with fresh shredded coconut, sugar, ghee and cardamom. Coconut burfi should be flavourful with a soft and chewy consistency.
Almond burfi is a common type of burfi, other common nut burfi’s include: cashew and pistachio. Almond burfi is made from ground almonds, sugar, ghee, and cardamom. It holds together and has the same weight as fudge, but it has a different texture and mouth feel.
My two favourites this week are the mango lassi and the almond burfi. If you try out either of these recipes, I hope you enjoy them as much as I did.