My mom's signature dessert is rasamalai. In fact, there may or may not have been an incident involving my younger sister where we fought, leap frog style, for the last piece of her rasamalai. I probably won.
For DESSERT FEST 2010! I wanted to make rasamalai to mix up the various dessert cuisines we had available. Also, when I make this dish, it is really hard to mess up. I mean, REALLY hard. Meaning like, I bought the wrong kind of ricotta cheese and didn't follow the directions to par and it STILL came out fabulous.
Also, it is almost DIWALI! So, here is something yummy you can try out for the holiday.
The mixture below is more liquidy than what it usually looks like - probably because I forgot to strain it.
Garam garam rasamalai!
Whipping cream and sugar, whisking away
Finished product, on display...nom nom nom!
Rasamalai, by Geeta Halarnakar
Serves 1 Oldest Daughter (okay...okay...fine...you can cut this into as many big or small squares as you need - but say 20-40 squares)
- Largest size of full-fat ricotta cheese, generally 30-48oz*
- 15-24 oz. sugar (whatever size you have of the ricotta cheese, you'll need half as much sugar.), plus another 1/2 -3/4 cup
- 1 pint heavy whipping cream
- 2 tsp. ground cardamom (or, more, if you like it a lot)
- Optional: unsalted pistachios or almond slivers
Preheat the oven to 350 and grease a 13x9 glass baking pan.
Empty the ricotta cheese out from the jar and strain it as much as you can in cheesecloth or something of the like. (Note that for this version, I did not do this, but would recommend doing so.). Save the strained whey/liquid in another bowl, you'll need it later.
In a medium-sized bowl, mix together the ricotta cheese and the sugar. To measure the sugar, all I did was literally take half of the size of the carton that the ricotta came in - no measuring cups needed!
Once this is well mixed, spread into your pre-greased pan. Bake this at 350 for about 30-45 minutes. You will know it is done when the top of the dish is browned. I usually set my kitchen timer for 35 minutes and go from there.
While heaven is baking in the oven, prep the sauce. Take a medium saucepan and boil the whipping cream and remaining 1/2 to 3/4 cup sugar (put as much to your own taste/liking - remember the rasamalai baking in the oven will also be sweet already!). Add the whey/liquid reserved from straining the ricotta. Remove from the heat and let it cool.
Once the rasamalai is baked, remove it from the oven and let it cool down to room temperature, and then cut it into squares. Again - how many squares you cut it into is up to you. This can serve one older daughter or multiple dinner guests.
Pour the whipping cream mixture over the cooled and cut rasamalai. Sprinkle the cardamom on top. You can also sprinkle lightly ground pistachios or almond slivers on top.
Store in the refridgerator until you are ready to serve. This dish should last a few days in the fridge - so you can definitely make it ahead of time and keep it prepared. But not with me around. Then it will only last 24 hours max.