If there is one thing I have learned in my three decades on this planet, it is this: As human beings we should take the time each and every day to understand one another’s stories and cultures. And to me, the way I do that is through food and engaging in conversation over a meal. I hope you enjoy sharing similar moments with some of my favourite recipes below. Scroll down on the Recipe Tab for more delightful memories.
Oh, Sweet Jalebi!
Throughout my journey in India I have enjoyed a variety of sweets and treats, and in every city I manage to find Jalebi; crisp deep-fried refined flour and yogurt batter spirals dunked in saffron sugar syrup. Yum! I thought I would share a recipe that was offered up by a man making Jalebi in Chennai. It was during Diwali and he was selling hundreds of them each day in celebration of the festival.
Jalebi making is quite an art and though traditionally a muslin cloth with a hole in it is used to make the spirals in hot oil, I personally find using a squeeze bottle makes it much simpler.
Prep Time: 1-2days
Cooking time: 20-25 minutes
1 cup Refined Flour
1/2 cup Yogurt
3 cups Sugar
1 tablespoon Milk Saffron (a pinch)
Ghee for deep-frying
In a large bowl, whisk refined flour, yogurt and sufficient water to a smooth and pouring consistency batter. Cover and keep in a warm place to ferment for 24 hours.
Beat the batter with your hands again for 15 minutes. Cook sugar with 2 cups water in a deep, non-stick pan on high heat, stirring continuously, until the sugar dissolves.
Add milk and when the foam rises to the top, collect it with a ladle and discard.
Add saffron and cook, stirring, until the syrup reaches one string consistency. Keep the syrup warm. Heat sufficient ghee in a pan on medium heat.
Pour some batter into a squeeze bottle, and squeeze round spirals into the hot ghee and deep fry, turning them over gently a few times, while waiting for them to become evenly golden and crisp.
Drain and soak in sugar syrup for 2-3 minutes. Take them out of the syrup and serve hot.