Ricotta Cheese Rasmalai | Easy Rasmalai | Quick Rasmalai
It’s Fathers Day. This is a time to honor fatherhood, the paternal bonds.
I dedicate this dish to everyone who have played a paternal role to its caring best, in my life, be it my uncles, mentors or the dad in my house – my kids’ father.
I have always wanted to prepare ras malai at home, this being my favorite dessert and I’m sure of many. The dish has its origins in Odisha, in India as per the Wikipedia, invented by a Bengali businessman and sweet manufacturer K.C.Das. It is popularly eaten in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh.
‘Ras’ meaning juice and ‘malai’ meaning cream. This creamy, juicy delicious dessert is an indulgent, rich milk based dessert. Traditionally prepared using paneer (a fresh unaged, non-melting cheese common in Indian cuisine). The paneer making process involves curdling of heated milk using lemon juice or vinegar, the collection of the cheese (paneer) removal of the whey. The paneer then is cooked in sugar syrup, then dipped in sweetened cream, flavored with cardamom.
This recipe, however is a quick version using ricotta cheese (considered lighter). The cheese is sweetened, baked and then immersed in reduced creamy milk, which is sweetened, flavored with cardamom, sprinkled with nuts. The result is so delicious, you will not be able to stop yourself with one serving.
- ricotta cheese - 250 g
- sugar - ¼ cup (or as per taste)
- full fat milk - 2 & ½ cups
- sugar - ¼ cup (or as per taste)
- cardamom pods - 4, the seeds powdered
- saffron - a pinch
- pistachios - 4-6 slivered
- almonds - 4-6 slivered
- First, mix the ¼ cup of sugar with ricotta cheese (from which moisture has been removed*) very well.
- Pre-heat the oven to 180 deg C.
- Grease a muffin tray with ghee or butter.
- Spoon in 2 - 2 and ½ tablespoons of the mixture in each well/depression in the tray.
- Bake at 180 deg C for 30-35 minutes.
- Keep an eye on the bake the last 10 minutes (say from 25 min onwards), remove the tray once the edges of the ricotta become lightly browned.
- Insert a clean knife in the middle, if it comes out clean then its done.
- If not bake it for a few more minutes until done. Take care not to burn. Ovens vary, hence if they appear to be darkening too quickly at the edges, reduce the oven temperature a bit and bake until done.
- While the bake is ongoing, heat the milk in a thick bottomed non-stick pan.
- Once it comes to a boil, reduce the heat and continue to cook clearing the sides and the bottom all the while until the milk is reduced to say ⅔ rds (10-15 minutes) The milk does not need to reduce too much. It should be thin enough to get soaked into the ricotta pieces.
- Then, add in the sugar, mix and cook for another couple of minutes until the sugar dissolves.
- Add powdered cardamom, saffron (if using) slivered nuts(retain some for garnish) and turn off the heat.
- Allow the milk to cool.
- Once the ricotta is baked, allow that to cool.
- Then run a buttered knife along the edge and remove the pieces very carefully. They tend to be very delicate and may break easily. (works better if it is a good non-stick tray and well greased)
- Then, transfer the cooled milk onto another dish, place the baked ricotta pieces in this dish, and chill in the refrigerator for 6-8 hours.
- Serve chilled garnished with the rest of the slivered nuts.
keep an eye on the bake from 20 minutes onwards. if it happens to be browning too quickly, try reducing the oven temperature and baking until a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean.
allow the milk to cool completely before placing the baked ricotta.
stays good for 2-3 days in the fridge.