Wow!! This is my 50th post and I feel extremely happy of achieving this milestone set as part of my goal 3 months ago. What other way of celebrating this achievement with family and friends than preparing one of the favorite sweet dishes of Indians – Gulab Jamun.
My family is a die-hard fan of this Indian dessert. They would never say ‘no’ to this soft and syrup dunken golden beauties when offered any time of the day. Especially, this is my dad and daughter’s favorite. Though Gulab Jamun made of khoya are tastier, I use the simple method of using an instant mix.
I make Gulab Jamun at least once in a month and it takes me less than an hour including preparation, frying and soaking. At the end of one hour, you can immediately serve this dessert to your loved ones.
The first time I tried making this dessert resulted in an utter disaster, fully cracked, soggy and swollen just like a tennis ball. I never had thought making Gulab Jamun with instant mix too was a skill, which I developed after few attempts. I can now say proudly that I too can make soft and succulent Gulab Jamun, especially when this is the favorite of those whom you love.
Any brand Gulab Jamun instant mix – 1 packet (200 gms)
Water – 90-100 ml for making the dough
Ghee or oil for frying
Ghee for greasing your hands
For sugar syrup
Sugar – 500 gms
Water – around 550 ml (measure in the same cup used for measuring sugar)
Cardamoms – 4-5 or use about ½ tbsp of cardamom powder
Pistachios or Badams as needed
Preparation + Cooking time – 50 mins to an hour
- Take the instant mix in a wide bowl and remove lumps, if any. Add water little by little and make soft and pliable dough. Cover and set it aside.
- Combine sugar, water and crushed cardamom or powdered cardamom in a wide vessel and dissolve the sugar completely.
- Heat the sugar-water mixture over the stove top for 6 to 8 minutes on medium flame. Sugar syrup is ready. Remove and set it aside.
- Now, heat a pan with ghee/oil for frying over medium flame.
- Meanwhile, divide the prepared dough into small balls. Grease your hands with ghee. Using your palms, roll the balls without any creases. Roll out the balls in batches while keeping the remaining dough covered. While one batch of Jamuns is getting fried, roll the balls for the next batch.
- When the ghee/oil is hot enough for frying, turn the flame to low and drop the balls gently into the ghee/oil and fry till they turn golden/dark brown. Keep on turning the balls gently for uniform cooking and browning using a ladle.
- When the Jamuns turn into dark brown color, remove them using the slotted ladle and immediately drop them into the prepared sugar syrup. Meanwhile roll and keep the next batch of balls ready.
- Fry the next batch. Before dropping the next batch into the hot syrup, transfer the first batch of soaked Jamuns to a bowl without any syrup. This way quantity of sugar syrup used is less and also Jamuns are soaked well.
- Repeat the same for the rest of the batch until all the balls are rolled, fried, soaked in the sugar syrup and transferred to a bowl. After removing the soaked Gulab Jamuns, there will be sufficient quantity of sugar syrup left in the vessel that you can pour over the Jamuns while serving.
- Now transfer the soaked Gulab Jamuns to a serving bowl. Garnish the Gulab Jamuns with nuts and pour the sugar syrup over them and serve. I used finely chopped pistachios for garnishing.
Serve it warm or cold. My dad and daughter love their Gulab Jamuns warm.
- I make around 10-12 balls per batch and fry them. A packet of instant mix (200 gms) yields around 40-42 jamuns.
- While the first batch is getting fried, roll out the second batch and same way for the rest of the dough.
- As my family prefers Gulab Jamuns fried in ghee, I use ghee. You can use ghee or oil as per your choice.
- Greasing your hand helps in rolling the balls without any creases. Fried Gulab Jamuns, when soaked in sugar syrup will increase in size. Hence, roll small sized balls.
- Overcrowding while frying may not result in even cooking and browning of the Gulab Jamuns.
- Instant mix instructions call for almost 800 gms of sugar but with trial and errors, the above quantity of sugar and water works fine for me.
- Also, the method of soaking followed in this recipe ensures Gulab Jamuns soaks the syrup and results in soft and juicy jamuns. Sometimes few may face the problem that the centre of the gulab jamuns have not soaked the syrup and is dry. This method works perfectly and you can serve the jamuns immediately.