You do remember I spoke about making sweets and savouries like, Kala Jamuns and Boondi on my previous post for this Diwali? Oh I forgot to mention using boondi in Chiwda and frying up some delicious crisp, thin Jalebis to make our evening warm and memorable.
Making Jalebis have always been on my mind. I had my inhibitions, probably the process of making sugar syrup and frying them made me nervous. However, with my little one around and in an attempt to satisfy her food cravings, I am tempted these days to experiment with dishes that I hesitated in the past. My tiny tot is an average eater, but she enjoys a good deal of variety on her plate. She takes me to surprise with her food habits and likings, her uniqueness with tastes, which can get quite unpredictable!
I pulled my sleeves up well with the art of making jalebis which aren't as difficult as they sound or seem like. The video by Manjula's kitchen did boost my confidence quite a bit and I set out to fry a small batch (measured half the quantity of tea cups), yet they seemed like a lot. Easily made up close to 20 odd jalebis. I chose an instant recipe using yeast, trust me it works beautifully. My grandma is an expert in making these the traditional way by soaking flours in curd and leaving them to ferment overnight. Every Diwali, way back in her kitchen, she would slave for hours, to carefully break open the eye of an empty coconut shell to pipe out perfectly round jalebi batter over a large wok filled with oil, fry them gently and dunk them into delicately flavoured sugar syrup, an appealing dessert that could easily serve a huge crowd and satisfy many taste buds. She was quite surprised knowing the fact that I hardly slaved over these. I replaced the besan to equal amount of rice flour as per my grandma's suggestion and the resulting jalebis were very crisp and sinful.
To be honest, I wasn't sure if the photographs here were good enough to post. So I apologize since the eve was hectic and with all that I had at hand I shot them in a hurry. But then its Diwali season and jalebis should be here hence.
1/2 cup All Purpose flour
1 teaspoon rice flour
1/2 teaspoon yeast
1/2 teaspoon oil
1/2 teaspoon sugar
A pinch of turmeric for color (optional)
About 1/3 cup of lukewarm water (as needed)
Oil to fry
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
Pinch of cardamom powder
Few strands of saffron
1 teaspoon of lemon juice
Dissolve the yeast in warm water and allow it to sit for about five minutes. Mix the flour, rice flour, turmeric, oil and sugar together. Add the yeast solution and mix well, making sure that there are no lumps and the batter is smooth. Set the batter aside and let it sit in a warm place for one hour. Make sure the batter is fermented. After fermenting batter will rise high and look frothy like the above picture.
Boil the sugar and water together. Add the lemon juice and saffron and close the heat.
Heat the oil in a kadhai or a frying pan. Check if the oil is ready by dropping dots of batter in the oil. If batter sizzles and comes up without changing color its ready. Fill the Jalebi batter into a piping bag with a plain round nozzle. Squeeze the Jalebi batter out in the hot oil in a pretzel shapes and fry them until golden-brown on both sides. Transfer into the warm syrup. Let jalebi soak in the hot syrup for a few seconds and take out. Serve hot.
Note: Having the oil at right temperature is the key to good jalebis. Fry jalebis on a low flame till they are golden in colour. I got a hang of this after my first 2 jalebis turned brown. Switch off the flame if the oil is too hot and the jalebi burn.