MANGO KALAKAND/ KALAKAND WITH MANGO FLAVOUR

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MANGO KALAKAND / KALAKAND WITH MANGO FLAVOUR/ मैंगो कलाकंद

KALAKAND/कलाकंद a delicious Indian mithai or sweet is a milk-based delicacy. The key ingredient is the chhena/paneer or crumbled cottage cheese. This is a North Indian speciality as paneer/chhena based dishes are widely prepared and relished here. The chhena based kalakand and milk cakes were first introduced by the immigrants who came from undivided India and settled in Alwar) Rajasthan. They used to make such a delicious kalakand and milk cakes which were a magnificent art(kala) according to them and sold within hours like a hot cake

To make it from scratch, one will have to curdle the milk first with the help of some acidic agent like vinegar or lemon juice. I curdle the milk with sour curd which results In the softest paneer and also I get a good quantity of it.
In this way, the process to make this mithai has two parts. First, curdle the milk to make chhena, and the other parts are to use this chhena to make the delicious KALAKAND. Normally, I make the authentic one which is plain white and cooked with the paneer, milk powder, sugar and sometimes the condensed milk. But this time I decided to add the mango puree while making it. As we await summers for the mangoes and who is there to resist itself from the mango mania

Preparation time – 10 min
Cooking time – 50 min
Setting time – 3-4 hrs
Course – Dessert
Type – Indian sweet
Cuisine – North-West India(Rajasthan)
Author – Bharti Dhawan

INGREDIENTS TO MAKE PANEER/CHENA

•  Whole milk – 1 lt.
•  Sour curd (a day old curd) – 3/4 cup

INGREDIENTS  FOR KALAKAND

•  Soft crumbled paneer/cottage cheese/ chhena – 200 gms /2 cups
•  Milk powder – 100 gms/1 cup
•  Sugar – 100 gms or to taste *(see notes)
•  Mango puree – 1 cup(from 1 big mango)
•  Milk – 2 tbsp
•  Ghee – 2 tsp
•  Saffron strands/kesar – 6-8 nos
•  Chopped nuts – 2 tbsp
•  Green cardamom pods – 2-3

DIRECTIONS TO MAKE PANEER/CHHENA

1-  Take a saucepan and add milk. Keep it for boiling at low flame

2-  When it starts to boil, add sour curd spoon by spoon. Stir the milk slowly. You will notice that the milk has curdled leaving the greenish water

3-  Adjust a muslin cloth in a big strainer and strain to get chhena. Pour some cold water so that the sourness goes away. Leave the paneer in the strainer so that the moisture is strained out, leaving the solid behind

DIRECTIONS FOR MANGO KALAKAND

1- Firstly, soak kesar/saffron strands in warm milk and keep aside

2- Take a non-stick kadahi and add ghee. When heated, add crumbled paneer. Cook for 3-4 minutes so the moisture reduces and rawness goes away

3- Add milk powder and roast again for a few minutes to incorporate well

4- Next, add saffron-infused milk and cook again until it incorporates well to the chhena mix


5- Next, add sugar and the mango puree.

6- Cook the mix until starts leaving the sides of kadahi Add half quantity of nuts and cardamom seeds/ilaychi dana. Mix well

7- Allow it to cool a little and set in a greased tray or thali. Spread the remaining half quantity of nuts and press with a spatula

8- Refrigerate for 3-4 hours to allow it to set and become firm. When set, cut into desire sized cubes

NOTES AND TIPS

Adjust the quantity of sugar if the mango is too sweet.(I skipped sugar as I used sweetened milk powder and the mango was too sweet)

The fleshy and fiberless variety of mango is good for this sweet

The shelf life of KALAKAND is short, so better to refrigerate and consume it within 2-3 days


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