Roshogolla(রসগোল্লা)! Also known as rasgulla or Roshgulla. The all time most beloved mishti of most Bangladeshis. Do you know how many ways the homemade rusgulla process can go wrong? About a hundred ways. How do I know? Oh, my! Because I’ve encountered them all and it took me more or less about hundred tries to perfect the Rasgulla making process. Well, maybe a little less than a hundred times, but it sure felt that way. Now, so that you don’t have to waste all those pure milk and sugar hundred times, I am going to tell you about all the tips and tricks I have gathered over the years so you can get the perfect rasgulla right the first time. Well, may be not the first time if you don’t precisely follow each of the intricate tips. Let’s start –
Tips about Chhana to make Rasgulla:
- Use whole milk, preferably organic, to make the chhana. No low-fat, 2% or skim milk business here. Find the recipe and tricks to make soft chhana for Bengali mishti(sweets) here. Follow the direction precisely to have the base of your rasgulla ready.
- The chhana(ছানা), also referred as chenna, paneer or the fresh homemade ricotta is very important to make soft, delicious rashgulla. While making chhana, do not boil the milk after adding the lemon juice or vinegar as that’ll lead to chewy Rasgullas as oppose to soft melt in the mouth traditional roshogolla.
- Wash the chhana/cheese thoroughly. This is vital to eliminate the lemony or vinegary taste in Rasgullas. I turn on the tap water and let water flow on the strainer with chhana and wash the cheese with my fingers very nicely!
- Drain all water from chhana. If chhana is not drained well, it will be impossible to knead and shape the cheese balls. Make sure the rasgulla chhana is crumbly and slightly dry yet a little moist. Too dry and the Rasgullas will be dry, too moist and the Rasgullas will scatter in the syrup. I usually hang chhana in cheesecloth overnight, or atleast 7-8 hours.
Tips about Kneading to make Rasgulla:
- Kneading is very important! Knead till you get a smooth non-sticky dough like consistency and the cheese leaves out some ghee/oil. Rub the chhana with fingers and heels of the palm till the chhana comes together as a smooth dough ball, neither too hard nor too soft.
- How long should you knead the chhena? About ten to fifteen minutes or until you are able to form a very smooth dough with no cracks. If you like to take a short cut, get your food processor out and process the chhana for about 45 seconds to a minute or until the crumbly chhana becomes a dough ball. My mom always kneads the chhana for roshogolla with her fingers and the heel of her palm. I always use the food processor for a faster prep time. I haven’t seen any difference in taste or texture for using the food processor. To me it is like staying true to authenticity while keeping it modern and saving time.
- When rolling the cheese balls between your hands, leave no cracks.
Tips about Sugar Syrup to make Rasgulla:
- I use a sugar water ratio of 1:3, 1 cup sugar for 3 cups of water which gives medium sweet Rasgullas, perfect for our taste. If you want them sweeter, you can increase the amount of sugar. My mom does 1:2 sugar water ratio.
- You may chose to add cardamom or rose water to the syrup for flavoring. Both adds fabulous aroma to Rasgulla. I usually don’t use anything.
- Rasgullas need plenty of space in the syrup to expand and keep their round shape. If the syrup is thick, less or there are too many balls crowding the pot, rashgullas will either become flat or lose their shape.
Tips about Cooking Pot to make Rasgulla:
- When chosing a pot, measure in a way that there will be some space for the rashgollas to breathe after they double up in size. Make sure that the pot has a tight lid to cover the rashgullas when cooking.
- Pick a deep and wide pot for the Rashgolla to cook. If needed, make the Rasgullas in two batches so that they have enough space to breathe and expand.
- No matter how much chhena you make, or how many balls you form, or the type of pan you use, remember the sugar water ratio you want to use. Accordingly fill your pot. You want to fill little less than 3/4 of the pan so the cheese balls have enough space to float while cooking.
- I use a deep wide pot with glass lid and enjoy watching the rashgullas doubling up. If the rashgollas come in contact with air while cooking, they do not expand properly, so a glass lid works beautifully for me. If you don’t have a glass lid, tame the curiosity to open the lid. Most of my previous attempts of making rashgolla failed because I couldn’t resist opening the lid. As soon as the hot rasgulla comes into contact with air, they shrink resulting in chewy, harder Roshogolla.
Tips about Shape of Rasgulla:
- The cheese balls will double in size while boiling in the syrup so size them accordingly on how big or small you want them.
- If you get flat or shapeless rasgullas, it is because they aren’t getting enough space to expand. Pick a bigger pot or make your rashgolla in multiple batches.
- Rasgullas need plenty of space in the syrup to expand and keep their round shape. If the syrup is less or there are too many balls crowding the pot, rashgullas will either become flat or lose their shape.
- When your cheese balls are ready, heat the water and sugar in a pan over medium flame until the sugar melts. Add the balls into the syrup as soon as it comes to a boil, and you see the first bubbles appearing. Too thick syrup will result in deformed rasgulla.
Tips about How to Test Rasgulla is cooked:
- To check if the rasgullas are cooked, drop one in a cup of water. If it sinks, it is done. If it floats, boil for a couple of minutes and check again. I usually don’t do this test because in my experience opening the lid of the pot alters the texture of the rasgullas. Through experience, I have perfected the timing and the recipe I use now never gave me uncooked roshogolla. However, this test is widely used.
Master these roshogolla troubleshooting tips by paying attention to each very carefully for fabulous rasgulla. Last but not least, if you believe in prayers, pray! I always do when I make rashgollas so that they turn out perfectly ☺
Stay tuned for The fabulous roshogolla recipe next! here.