I was enjoying that Ganesh Chaturthi has just gone by, and look what I realized today, Dashera is just a couple of days away! I think this Navratri just went by with a wink of an eye, here we stand a day away from it's end. So on the Indian festival of Dashera, a festival where we celebrate Lord Rama's triumph over the demon Ravan I decided to make these malai pedas. This recipe is definitely going to be on my Diwali cooking this year, and I thought I should share it here too.
The malai pedas are really easy to make, needing just 5 ingredients and just about an hour. With ricotta cheese being the main ingredient along with condensed milk, the other ingredients are optional. If you prefer a cardamom flavored sweet, skip the saffron and just add cardamom powder. If you prefer a flavor like almond, add some almond powder and almond extract to get the flavor. Once the ricotta and condensed milk mixture is ready, you can pretty much customize it to your preference.
I have only used saffron mixed in lukewarm milk to get the color in these pedas and so they are light yellow. If you prefer a darker shade like the sweet stores, add some yellow food color to the mixture and you will achieve that. This is a really simple recipe that you should try for Diwali this year. Continue reading and do remember to check out Kesar Malai Modak and Instant Ricotta Rasmalai as alternatives to this ricotta based sweet. Do leave your thoughts in the comments section at the bottom of the page.
Ricotta cheese 2 cups
Sweetened Condensed Milk ¾ cup
Milk ¼ cup
Saffron 1 tsp
Cardamom powder 2 tbsp
Heat the milk till lukewarm, add the saffron and set aside. In a heavy bottom pan add the ricotta cheese and set it on medium flame. Cook the cheese for at least 25-30 minutes, till all the water evaporates and you are left with a crumbly cheese that does not have water content.
Now add the condensed milk to the cheese and mix well. Let the mixture cook on medium flame for about 30 minutes or until it becomes thick. Add the saffron and milk along with the cardamom powder and mix well. Let the color of the saffron come up in the pedas and the mixture become thick again. Turn down the heat and transfer to a bowl. Cool the mixture for an hour or refrigerate for 10-15 minutes. Remove, knead it one more time and grease your palms with ghee. Divide the mixture into equal sized balls. Flatten the balls to make the pedas. Enjoy! They stay good for atleast 4-5 days when refrigerated.
For more sweets using Ricotta Cheese, head here: