Crash Course: Indian Mithai and Global Dessert Mash-ups

We help you hit the right note when it comes to making these Indian mithai and global dessert mash-ups.


Sweet Crunch – Gulab Jamun Money Bag Wantons

Serves: 5

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 45 minutes

Calorie count: 345 calories (per serving)

For the gulab jamun:

Ghee, for deep frying

5 g cardamom powder

2 cups sugar

4 g baking soda

15 g flour

100 g mawa/khoya

For money bag wontons:

Oil, for frying

4 to 5 spring roll sheets


  1. For the gulab jamun, use the base of a flat bowl or the heel of your palm to mash the mawa until smooth.
  2. Mix in the baking soda and flour. Knead a dough that’s firm yet pliable and doesn’t feel dry. However, if it feels dry., just wet your hands and work through the dough again.
  3. Portion the dough into marble-sized balls that are creaseless and smooth. Then shape them into oblong or round jamun.
  4. In a kadhai, heat ghee and then fry the gulab jamun without letting them touch each other. Fry on low heat, until golden brown. Set aside.
  5. Mix water and sugar, and place over low heat. Keep stirring until the sugar is completely dissolved. Do not let the syrup boil. Cook until it reaches a slightly thicker consistency. Bring the syrup to a boil after adding cardamom.
  6. Add fried gulab jamun to the syrup and turn off the heat. Set aside for 30 minutes and then drain. Then place them on a clean, dry surface, and wet your fingers and apply a little water over them.
  7. Place a gulab jamun on a wonton paper, hold up all four sides and tie with a thread to close. It should resemble a money bag. Repeat until all gulab jamuns are used.
  8. Deep fry until golden and crispy. Place an absorbent paper to drain out excess oil.

Tip: The sugar syrup is ready when it forms a coating on a spoon dipped in it for a few seconds.


Pasta Twist – Sandesh-Stuffed Ravioli in Saffron Sauce

Serves: 6

Prep time: 45 minutes

Cooking time: 15 minutes

Calorie count: 420 calories (per serving)

For the ravioli dough:

5 eggs

4 g salt

150 g semolina

300 ml flour

For the pistachio sandesh stuffing:

100 g sugar

10 g citric acid

150 g pistachios

1.5 litres milk

For the saffron sauce:

100 ml fresh cream

100 g mascarpone

Sugar, as required

50 ml milk

2 g saffron


  1. For the ravioli dough, mix the flour, eggs, semolina, and salt together, and then cover with a wet cloth.
  2. For the pistachio sandesh stuffing, boil milk in a heavy-bottomed pan.
  3. Meanwhile, in a bowl, mix citric acid and water, and when the milk comes to a boil, slowly add this citric acid mixture and let the milk curdle. Once the paneer is formed, strain and let it cool. Roast the paneer with the sugar in a pan for 6 to 7 minutes on a low flame.
  4. Grind the mixture until smooth and add powdered pistachios. Mix well and and portion into small balls.
  5. For the saffron sauce, heat the milk with saffron strands til it releases color. Add fresh cream, mascarpone, and sugar, and cook until the milk is reduced. Cook the sauce until slightly thick.
  6. To assemble, roll the ravioli dough to a thin sheet at 1 mm thickness and cut into squares.
  7. Place the Sandesh onto a square sheet and sandwich with another, firmly, seal the slides. Repeat until all the stuffing is used up and leave to rest for 30 minutes.
  8. Boil water with a few drops of oil and blanch the stuffed ravioli in it for 4 to 5 minutes.
  9. Remove the ravioli and place a few pieces on a plate. Pour saffron sauce and garnish with chopped pistachios and saffron strands.

Tip: After boiling, place the ravioli in ice, then drain and toss with oil, to avoid stickiness.


Creamy Shells – Gulkand Phirni Meringues

Serves: 6

Prep time: 45 minutes

Cooking time: 60 minutes

Calorie count: 320 calories (per serving)

For the gulkand phirni:

5 g cardamom powder

100 g soaked rice

750 ml milk

200 g sugar

45 g gulkand

For garnishing:

10 g chopped pistachios

For the meringue:

150 g icing sugar

50 g white chocolate, melted

150 g caster sugar

150 ml egg whites


  1. For the gulkand phirni, add the rice and ¼ cup milk to a mixer jar and grind coarsely.
  2. Heat the remaining milk in a non-stick pan and add the ground rice mixture and cardamom powder. Cook, stirring continuously, till the rice is soft and the mixture thickens. Add sugar and gulkand, mix well and cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Cool and then refrigerate until chilled.
  3. For the meringue, whip the egg whites and caster sugar in a stainless steel bowl, gradually adding the icing sugar to form a thick meringue.
  4. Fill a piping bag with the meringue mixture and pipe round shells in the shape of nests onto a baking tray.
  5. Bake at 80℃ for 15 minutes. Leave the baked meringues in the oven for an hour. Then open the oven door and let them dry. Take the baked meringues off the tray and place them in an air-tight container to avoid moisture.
  6. To serve, apply melted white chocolate all over the dried meringue shell. Pour chilled gulkand phirni, garnish with chopped pistachios and serve.

Tip: The phirni needs to be chilled so that the meringue shells hold it without melting.

Related Article: Two to Tango.


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