Roshogolla or Rasgulla is my choice for R in the A to Z Bengali Sweets Series. I didn’t search for other dishes starting with R. I am listing out what came into my eyesight. This Ranga Aloo-r Pantua is a Sweet Potato Dumplings in Syrup similar to Pantua with just chhana, then we have Raj Bhog and Rasgollar Payesh.
Coming back to this R, yes, this is a mother of a post, in the sense that I finally researched to make this and from the same recipe, I adapted for the other dishes. And I was upset that I couldn’t talk about this dish upfront as this came last in the series. This is popular all over the globe and is known by various names such as Rosogolla, Rasagolla, Rossogolla, Roshogolla, Rasagola, Rasbhari or Rasbari (Nepal).
Even though I ended up eating some Ras Malais the last time I made, this season when I have been making so many, I haven’t tasted even one. Trust me, everybody at home was happy that I wasn’t eating. As such, I only made a handful for each of them, that they were complaining that it wasn’t fair. I have promised to make a whole huge batch of them again soon.
I never knew until recently that Konda loves this, I knew parents and hubby dear enjoy this much. So it’s an added bonus now that my daughter also loves it.
I had my list ready and then searched around for the authentic method of making Rasgullas. I came about this and this site that explained at length about making the fresh chhana, kneading, rolling and then finally boiling the balls.
So here are some tips and tricks to make the perfect rasgullas at home. Thanks to these authors for sharing their knowledge with the rest of the world!
While I am going to explain the whole process in this post, I have already shared step by step pictures for making the soft chhana and kneading it.
In this A to Z Bengali Sweets for Protein Rich dishes:
A for Aam Sandesh
B for Bhapa Sandesh
C for Channar Puli
D for Danadar
E for Elixir Sandesh
F for Fruit Sandesh
G for Gajarer Sandesh
H for Hot Chocolate Sandesh Truffle
I for Ice Cream Sandesh
J for Jilapi
K for Khirkadam
L for Lyangcha
M for Malai Sandesh
N for Nikhuti Payesh
O for Orange Sandesh
P for Pantua
Q for Quick Rasmalai
Step By Step Pictures for making soft Chhana for Bengali Sweets
Step by Step Pictures for kneading the chhana to a soft texture.
Step by Step Pictures for making Rasgullas
And finally here is my huge vessel which had all the different sweets made at the same time. This picture is just after it was boiled.
This picture is after it has soaked for a while.
Roshogolla | How to make Spongy Bengali Rasgulla
For the Rasgullas
1 cup Milk / 250 ml (Full Cream Milk will be best)
2 tsp Lemon Juice (you may not use all of this)
For Sugar Syrup
1/2 cup Sugar
1 1/2 cups Water
How to make Rasgulla
1. Making the soft fresh Chhana to make the Rasgulla
Always use whole milk or full cream milk for best results.
I have used both lemon and fermented whey water for making the paneer / chhana.
If using Lemon, ensure you run the cheese in water to remove the lemon taste.
If using fermented whey water, dilute it and use.
If using vinegar, again dilute with water and use by drops.
Once you boil the milk, remove from fire, slowly add the curdling agent by drops, while you gently stir the milk to enhance the coagulation.
Do not boil the milk once you add the curdling agent, else you will end up having chewy rasgullas.
Once you get greenish liquid, it means all the cheese is formed.
Use a cheesecloth or a muslin cloth to gather the cheese.
Cover the vessel with the cloth and pour it over. Gather the cloth together and gently tie the mouth and let it drain. Do not press it down to drain the liquid yourself.
The drained chhana should be crumbly and still has some moisture. If the chhana is too dry, you won’t be able to get the balls hold the shape.
I left the chhana draining for 30 mins, while some advice to be left overnight, I found 30 mins worked out well for me.
2. Kneading the chhana to make the Rasgullas.
For all Bengali Sweets, it’s important that you knead the fresh chhana well.
It is even more important for sweets like the boiled Rasgullas or deep fried Pantuas types.
Once you have the excess whey drained, take the chhana on a plate or a board you have cleaned and pat dried. I took a wide bowl so that I could hold it with the left hand and knead with my right heel.
Start with rubbing the chhana with fingers to break down the cheese to further smaller size, gather again and continue this for 10 mins.
Then start kneading with your heel and rub forward. This again takes about 10 mins. In total I must have spent some 30 to 40 mins, kneading the chhana of about 4 liters milk each batch.
When you feel the kneading is enough, pinch out a ball and roll between your palm, if you notice the ball being formed without a crack and you have a sheen of oil over, it’s done.
The ball has to be smooth and shiny.
Once this is done, you can use this basic rasgulla to make different sweets like Chanar Puli, Danadar, Ras Malai, Khirkadam etc.
3. Making the Sugar Syrup for Rasgulla
The ratio of sugar to water is always 1:3 for a perfect sweet tasting Rasgulla. We do not want an overtly sweet ball here. However, if you want more sweet to your syrup, increase the sugar.
You can add spices like cardamom or cinnamon or rose water as per your taste. I used cardamon for most variety.
4. The cooking vessel for the Rasgulla
Rasgullas expand when it gets boiled. So always use a very wide vessel for the sugar syrup. Ensure the balls are not crowding in the pot. If this happens, the rasgullas become flat or lose its shape.
So make sure the pot you use to make the syrup and boil the balls are wide enough. The rasgullas double in size after getting cooked.
Choose a vessel with a lid that closes tightly over it.
Also, it is important that the balls do not come in contact with air, else it will deflate or not expand properly.
5. Shaping the Rasgullas
Remember that the rasgullas double after being cooked. So shape the balls accordingly. As I was making a huge batch with different recipes having different shapes, it was too cumbersome to maintain all these conditions. However, remember smaller ones tune double.
6. Boiling the Rasgullas
After ensuring you are using a wide vessel for boiling, make sure the pan comes to rolling boil and the sugar melts. We do not want a string syrup here, so have all your rasgullas shaped and ready by the time the water boils over.
When the water starts rolling boil, gently drop in the balls. Cover with lid.
Boil like this for 10 minutes. If the sugar-water solution is becoming thick, sprinkle some cold water on top. It should be sprinkled and not simply poured in, as that will bring the temperature down and stop the cooking process.
Switch off the flame, and allow to cool naturally. Don’t stir, move or touch the vessel until the Rossogollas have cooled!
7. How to test Rasgullas are cooked
While it is said that the balls coming in contact with air, will deflate the shape, may use the technique of dropping the balls in a cup of water. If the ball sinks, it is done. If it floats, boil for a couple of minutes and check again.
I simply cooked for 10 mins on high flame, left it uninterrupted for 30 mins or so.