Well this sweet is probably not really Kalakand but pretty close to it. I have never been a very patient cook and this is probably what has put me off making basundi (one of my favourites!). However this sweet I have been making since I was 10 and I am sure you can get your kids to make (maybe even your husband!).
The thing I really like about this recipe is that if you taste it at each stage during the process it tastes like a different milk sweet. It starts of like khoya then loosely to a basundi flavour, and finally kalakand. So if you like the taste of it somewhere in between just stop cooking.
This dessert is just not an ordinary dessert but was very representive of the immigrant culture. I don't know how it is like in America but when my family migrated to Australia, this was 'THE' sweet to make. It was quick and easy, used a new technology (that was microwave at the time), brought the taste of India and used 'foreign' ingredients. It was a time when using a microwave was pretty new thing to most immigrants let alone cooking in it. This was some 20 years ago. I have seen so many new immigrants taking the latest incarnation of the 'Microwave Sweet' (that was what we referred to it) and looking impressed that they have assimilated to the Aussie lifestyle.
It brings back fond memories as I was the kid who could make a sweet at the age of 10 that was not a cake. Let me know if you have heard of this dessert and I would love to hear your story!
2 cups Full Cream Milk Powder
300 mL Thickened Cream
395 grams Sweetened Condensed Milk
Pistachio Kernels - chopped for decoration. Can use any nuts or omit.
- Mix all ingredients together in a microwave safe dish (I use a Corningware dish). Make sure there are no lumps. Taste or lick the spoon. This is stage one. I can't put my finger on what it tastes like but it is good enough to eat now.
- On the high setting on the microwave, cook for 6 minutes. Have a careful eye on the microwave as it tends to froth up and spill over. If this happens give a break for 10 or 15 seconds and resume. Also the 'high' setting on the microwaves varies. It is with trial and error that you will get the optimal time taken to get the mix to a stage where the milk solids are starting to come together.
- Mix well. Again taste. I think it tastes a bit like basundi at this point of time. Put in the microwave for another 6 minutes. Keep a eye on it for the first few minutes and then it should be okay.
- Let it sit the microwave for 5 or 10 minutes after the beep. This gives it some time to fully cook. This still looks a bit raw when you take it straight out but this rest will let it fully cook through.
- Decorate with chopped nuts. When fully cool you can cut it into pieces and serve. This tastes good warm, cold or at room temperature.
- You can cook it a bit longer if you want a more browner, harder texture to it. Really up to you.
So there is my entry using the various forms of milk in about 15 minutes from start to finish. Enjoy!
Okay after thinking about this for awhile I think I am going to enter it in as an 'Improved Indian Dessert' for From My Rasoi (hosted by Katherine at Toast Point). Well I think it fits into the second category where it has been modified to appeal to the western palate. I was going to make Double Ka Meeta or Bread and Butter Pudding (of course in my style!) but I don't think I have time. I guess you just have to wait for that one to show up some time!