Desi Answer to Cheesecake Minus Crust – The New Indian Express

My love for cheesecakes and sweet dumplings may be the reason why I love rasmalai so much.

Rasmalai, which is often described in the west as a rich cheesecake without a crust, took me by surprise when on my recent visit to New York I ordered a cream cheesecake from the menu only to discover it was our desi rasmalai.

Rasmalai is a dessert eaten in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh. The name comes from two words—ras meaning syrup and malai meaning cream .This sweet is said to be originally from Odisha, where it is famous.

My mother usually made this exotic dumpling dessert using powdered milk, all purpose flour, baking soda and little oil to form the dumpling and dropped them in simmering sweetened cream milk concoction flavoured with rose water, cardamom and pistachios. She would serve them chilled in silver bowls covered with silver varq
I remember once she had made the dessert for a party but I managed to eat it all even before the party started and how much I was scolded for a dessert-less dinner or should I say deserted dinner. Haha.

Today let me share a recipe with you of these sweetheart dumplings.




  1. Bring milk to boil and set aside to cook to about 75 degree C
  2. Mix vinegar in 1½ cup water and mix in cooled milk
  3. Stir lightly till milk curdles
  4. Add 3 cups of iced water and stir
  5. Strain curdled milk off excess water through a muslin cloth
  6. Squeeze the remaining water so the residue is thick creamy mass
  7. Remove the mass on a work station adding 1/2 refined flour and corn starch and knead well
  8. Make around 20 balls and flatten slightly and set aside. Make sure there is no water or crack in the patty
  9. Mix remaining flour in half a cup of water and keep aside
  10. Cook sugar in five cups of water stirring continuously till sugar dissolves, add milk and let it come to a boil, add dates, cardamom
  11. Collect the scum from the surface and remove
  12. Continue to stir the syrup for few minutes
  13. Remove from heat and pour in a vessel
  14. Take one cup of prepared syrup in a non stick pan , add 4-5 cups of water. Bring to a boil and add the patties to it. Add half of the flour water mixture as a result the syrup will froth gently. Slowly add ½ cup of water every 5 minutes to prevent the syrup from thickening. Continue cooking for 15 minutes till patties ready. When pressed, they should spring back
  15. Remove dumplings from the boiling syrup with a slotted ladle
  16. Put them in the reserved syrup
  17. Served chilled garnished with pistachio
  18. To be more elaborate we can prepare rabri by reducing 10 cups of milk and 10 spoon of sugar
  19. Cook on high heat and then on medium heat make sure you are stirring continuously till the volume is reduced by ¾ of the original volume
  20. Add in green colour and crushed pistachios for adding in the rabdi

Monish Gujral

First chef from India to be invited to Le cordon Bleu to demonstrate in Paris. Monish is credited with the trailblazing turn-around of Moti Mahal, from being a small but iconic presence in Delhi, to becoming a multi-national corporation that is well on its way to defining how the world eats Indian food. A traditionalist, Monish has remained true to the signature dishes that made Moti Mahal a legend, while reinventing the dining experience into one that is exciting and avant garde to suit modern sensibilities.

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