We had chosen Malpuas for dessert from the hotel banquet menu for some occasion and nobody was with me. Malpuas were my choice. I had tasted it in Sree Krishna sweets sometime back for the first time and I loved it. But everybody else wanted carrat halwa or gulab jamun, the crowd favourites. I am generally notorious for selecting the worst items off any hotel menu and everybody was wary. We finally did have Malpuas for the occasion but they weren’t as nicely made and everybody told me “I told you so”.
I tried to make it at home once after that and they turned out ok but not great. I was determined to make Malpuas work. I know they’re divine and I wanted my family to know too. I made Malpuas again a couple of weeks back for Rajasthan and I took my time with it. I tasted it at every step knowing well that I cannot correct for less or more sugar later on. The consistency of the malpua batter is very important too. I measured, added everything in small increments because although I had a rough ingredient list I wasn’t following any recipe. I prepared the batter and sugar syrup the night before and fried them the next morning. I warmed the sugar syrup the next morning. I patiently fried them batch after batch without cranking up the heat because it was getting late for office. And I am delighted to announce that this time the Malpuas were gorgeous.
Everytime I passed the fridge, I snucked a malpua into my mouth. They were heavenly. Jagan loved them and said they were great. Half a litre of milk yielded around 30-40 small malpuas – enough dessert for almost a week. I’d definitely make them again and maybe for a special occasion too.
Rajasthan is the largest state in India. Did you know that the sowcarpet marwaris are originally from Rajasthan? Rajasthan is famous for its snacks and sweets and its colourful art. It’s also a hot tourist place now, in every sense of hot. I’d like to visit Rajasthan too sometime.
Prep time: 15 mins
Cooking time: 30 mins
Makes – 30-40 small malpuas
Whole Milk – ½ litre
Maida – 1 cup
Unsweetened Khoa – 100 gm
Sugar – 1 -1/2 cups (adjust slightly as per taste)
Oil/Ghee – for deep frying
Pistachios – 10 slivered
Sugar – ¾ cup
Water – just sufficient to wet the sugar
1. Reduce milk to 2/3rd of its original volume by cooking on low heat and stirring frequently. Add sugar towards the end and stir until it dissolves. Switch off and let cool completely.
2. Crumble the khoa by hand and add it to the reduced cooled milk. Whisk well to incorporate thoroughly making sure there are no lumps.
3. Add the maida while whisking constantly to avoid lumps. You should end up with a thickish batter somewhat like a pancake batter – pourable but slightly thick. Rest batter for a couple of hours. I put it in the fridge overnight.
4. Remove from fridge and let it come to room temperature. Whisk once again.
5. Heat a thick bottomed pan. Add oil or ghee or a combination of both for deep frying. I used just oil.
6. Meanwhile in another thick bottomed pan heat sugar and water for the sugar syrup. When the sugar has dissolved completely and the syrup is a little thick and sticky, switch off.
7. You’ll need a ladle and slotted karandi. Ladle some batter (about 2 tablespoons worth) into the hot oil keeping the ladle quite close to the oil but without touching it. Repeat pouring batter into the oil to cover the pan but leaving a little room in between each one. Keep heat on medium-low. The pancakes initially sink to the bottom but when they’re cooked they float up. Wait for a minute or two before nudging the pancakes with the slotted karandi and flipping them over. Cook until golden. Remove from oil and place in the sugar syrup. Repeat with the rest of the batter.
8. The malpuas will soak up the sugar syrup with time. If piled, they’ll stick to each other but can be easily peeled apart. Garnish with pistachio slivers. Serve warm or at room temperature.