Lots of people complain about sweets made at home did not meet our expectations; this experience happened to me many times when I was learning making Sweets especially with paneer (chenna). Many delicious sweet recipes alike kalakand, sandesh (Bengali special), chumchum made from paneer needs patience and time to make perfect delicious dish. I am gonna share few recipes made with paneer, which could be made simple and easy with time consuming 🙂
Let me start with traditional Bengali dish Sandesh. This one is made using raw chena (paneer), sugar powder and cardamom and nothing is cooked. All these are kneaded to smooth dough and then garnished, refrigerated and consumed. Iam un aware if any other versions of Sandesh. But this one will tastes raw and may not be liked by many. To remove the rawness, it could be cooked along with sugar for a while or till it reaches the consistency. One can try this Sandesh Recipe for Diwali as it can be done very quickly. Whenever I make rasgulla, I was left with almost ½ or 1 cup of paneer, so I used it for making this.
You can try these cheesy delights more attractive by garnishing with whatever you like. I would like to share few of my simple ideas here.. 😀
Garnish with Choco chips or Choco rice (Circe goes well)
Can add flavor and a traditional look by adding Kesar A Nutty garnishing like this using pista and badam Garnish with Tutti Frutti
Apart from the 3 main ingredients, I do not use anything else for kneading. You can add 1 tsp. pista almond powder to the mix while kneading or one can use 1/2 tsp. cocoa powder or just corn flour. All taste different. The one with nuts tastes nutty, one with Choco tastes Chocolaty (not really) 😛 and one with corn flour tastes floury. One made with only paneer and sugar tastes absolutely cheesy 🙂
Cooking time: 5 mins
½ cup paneer (Indian cottage cheese)
2 ½ tbsp. Powdered sugar (you can increase slightly too, if using cocoa powder use 3 ½ tbsp.)
Pinch of cardamom powder Garnishing (use which ever you like)
Few Pistas, almonds, kesar(saffron), Choco Rice or tutti fruit
Take a nonstick pan and add paneer, sugar, cardamom powder and let begin to heat on a low flame.
You can see sugar melting and looks gooey as though you ruined the dish. But need not worry; continue to cook on a low flame till it reaches a thick consistency. It will also begin to leave the sides of the pan and looks crumbly.
Let it cool down, if you want to add anything like corn flour or pista almond flour or cocoa powder, you can add and knead it till everything blends well with it.
Now Roll them to balls and flatten a bit. Tuck whatever you wish to garnish with in the center.
Refrigerate this for 2 hours and serve.
In case you like the traditional way of making Sandesh Sweet, you can make it instantly. Here is how to make .. Mix the paneer, cardamom powder, powdered sugar together. Knead it till everything blends well and roll them to balls.. Flatten them and finally refrigerate for 3 to 4 hours and serve.
Enjoy the tasty Sandesh Sweet! 🙂
Kalakand with Condensed Milk
The delicious kalakand can be prepared in just 10 minutes with condensed milk and simple paneer. This needs only four ingredients- very little milk, condensed milk, paneer and flavouring ingredient like cardamom powder. It tastes deliciously delicious with a crumble texture just like the one sold at sweet stores. The authentic recipe of Kalakand calls for curdling milk to make paneer, next condensing milk for hours and next process is same as mentioned below. The recipe iam sharing today is just a cut short method to make a great tasting kalakand that can be prepared on any occasion without having to toil for hours.
1 can Milkmaid full cream
sweetened condensed milk (No idea how this turns out with low fat Cow milk)
1 + ¼ cups tightly packed crumbled paneer (drained completely) (do not use low fat paneer, it doesn’t turn out tasty)
Crumble the paneer and set aside. Keep your nuts ready.
You can use silvered almonds or pulsed almonds whatever is handy. Chopped nuts will also do Grease a plate.
If you have parchment paper handy placeit on a plate instead of greasing. You can use foil too or just go ahead with a greased plate.
Add condensed milk to a heavy bottom pan and begin to warm up on a low flame
Add paneer, milk and cardamom powder or rose water. Mix well and begin to cook, stirring constantly to prevent burning. Very soon it becomes a thick mass and begins to leave the sides of the pan.
Switch off the stove. If you can manage can increase the flame to medium while cooking. It took about 8 minutes for me on a medium to high heat with constant stirring.
Transfer this mix to the prepared greased plate, paper or foil. Spread it to half inch thickness.
Level it and sprinkle the pistachios or any nuts and tuck them in with your palm.
Refrigerate it for at least 2 hours and cut to desired size pieces with a large sharp knife. You can collect the side uneven cut pieces, knead and set to one square piece.
Keeps good for 2 days if refrigerated. Serve chilled.
Prefer to use a stainless steel heavy bottom pan instead of nonstick one whenever you are making Kalakand 🙂
Payasam or Paneer Kheer
This is made by curdling the milk. The curdled milk solids are used to make this kheer. Paneer Payasam or Paneer Kheer is prepared during navratri festivals. A quick and easy to make dish that can wow anyone and a perfect one to celebrate on festive occasions 🙂
½ cup of paneer crumbled/ cottage cheese
200 ml milk (adjust) 40 ml condensed milk (can substitute with Almond milk from 20 almonds +4tbsps sugar, soak almonds overnight, blanch and grind to a very smooth paste with 40 to 60ml milk)
1/8 tsp cardamom powder
Few strands of saffron
Few drops of rose essence (optional)
Few unsalted toasted pistachios
Crumble the paneer completely and set aside.
On a low flame mix the milk, cardamom powder and condensed milk (or almond milk) in a bowl and bring it to boil.
Next then add paneer and mix well to blend with milk completely.
Make sure there must be enough milk for the paneer to blend. If required can add more milk and let boil on a low flame.
When it starts bubbling, simmer the flame and boil for 1 min more. Add the saffron strands and rose water and mix well.
Garnish with pistachios before serving this delicious paneer kheer 🙂
These measurements will work well with fresh paneer, if you are using frozen one, do adjust the consistency by adding more milk. One can increase the sweetness by adding more condensed milk or sugar if you are using almond milk. Enjoy the delicious Paneer Payasam 🙂
Ragi Payasam or Millet Kheer
This Nutritious and healthy Ragi Semiya is available on any food stores. It can be used to make upma, lemon ragi semiya, curd bath or even a pulao. Instead of making the usual semiya payasam, one could try this Ragi Semiya Payasam and it can be prepared in just 2 mins. This is more nutritious and healthy. Not much patience or time is needed to cook this yummy Ragi Payasam .Even the person who dislikes ragi / finger millet will love this kheer. You can even prepare this with almond milk or condensed milk too. All taste equally good
1 cup ragi semiya ((millets), roasted in ghee to keep it nonsticky)
1 cup whole milk
¼ cup water
3 tbsps brown sugar
Pinch of cardamom powder. (or add vanilla as option)
1 tbsp ghee
Nuts or red berries for garnishing
Take a bowl to mix milk, water, cardamom powder and brown sugar.
Bring the milk to boil. When milk perfectly comes to boil, add the ragi semiya and cook for 2 – 3 minutes on high flame.
Cooking time depends on the quantity of ragi semiya added. 1C usually takes 1 min to boil 2 mins.
Do not overcook the semiya and do not stir vigorously, as it may become sticky.
Now garnish with nuts or red currants after the ragi semiya is cooked.
Cooking time: 2 mins
One can prepare this millet kheer or ragi payasam using almond milk also, just soak 10 almonds in water for 3-4 hours, and grind them to a smooth paste using ½ cup water or milk. Then it comes to add another 1 cup of milk and bring this to a boil and add the ghee roasted semiya. Cook till it is cooked fully to serve.
Enjoy paneer specials with your loved ones 🙂
❤ Happy Cooking ❤