Top 5 Indian desserts

It’s time for confessions. Confessions about the love for confections! For a true Indian palate will vouch for the passion for mithais. For us in India, happiness means sweets, mithais or mishthan, call what you may! We love all sweetmeats and love them very sweet. Somebody from a western country might just comment that they are too sweet because their palate just cannot take it. It is the occasion and the celebration that necessitates the distribution of sweets for they are the symbol of spreading sweetness and happiness.

Mithais seem to have won the taste buds the world over and Indian sweets have extremely high visibility these days. Be it the fudge like dry sweetmeat barfi and peda, or the syrupy Gulab Jamun and rosogulla that require a bowl and a spoon, the sticky deep fried balushahi and gujiya, the fragrant hot halwa and jalebi, round besan laddoo and motichoor laddoo, creamy milk puddings like rice kheer or seviyan and then shahi tukre. A description of Indian sweetmeats requires reams of paper, a gourmet to relish them and the constitution to digest them. A quicker version of kheer is the ever popular phirni and a variety like Badam Pista Phirni, Rasgulla Phirni, Kesari Phirni make interesting bowlful of dessert at parties.

Indian sweetmeats and sweet makers are a world unto themselves, a world that draws anyone who has a very sweet tooth into a series of temptations! Indian sweetmeats are not only sweet, but also rich. If you do have a good supplier of fresh mithai like the local halwai then your life is made because making the sweets themselves can be a sticky (rocky) road to success. What one needs is the inclination to try it out the very first time and then remove all fear of failure. Generally, sweet making is a family business handed down from one generation to the next. Halwais are understandably reluctant to pass on their recipes and the tricks that make them work, so finding the perfect recipe requires luck and persistence. Then, as in all branches of confectionery making, it requires not only the ability to follow a recipe, but practice and observation of how the mixture behaves at every stage of preparation so that the end result is worth the time and effort invested.

Some traditional desserts that will never go out of fashion are given here for you: Gajar Halwa, Rasmalai, Kesari Kulfi!

Aloo Parantha – epitome of Punjabi home cooking

If there is something a hard working person desires at the end of the day, it would be having his or her favourite food, that too piping hot, at home! The thing is that the burden of cooking bears many of us down. The time might be there but the inclination is not there, hence the meal is sketchy and what one had wished to eat, like the favourite food we spoke about earlier, remains a wish unfulfilled. And then there are cases where the inclination is there to cook but time constraint is a major factor. Hence, a quick bite on the move is what an evening meal would look like. Not only do we end up spending money where it can be saved but we also end up giving our bodies insufficient nutrition.

This is where stuffed paranthas come in handy. Punjabis love Aloo Paranthas for breakfast but the same dish can be converted into a proper meal with a salad on the side and freshly made raita like Boondi Raita alongside. A busy cook needs to ensure some kneaded dough in the fridge, and some boiled potatoes. Actual cooking of the paranthas takes less than 30 minutes.

There is every reason to eat well and eat well at home. With a little bit of planning, the kitchen shelves can be well stacked with foods for the week and if you can get organized. Even the week’s menu can be put up so that the mind and hands start working the moment you get home. As the menu is planned, there is bound to be variety and best distribution of nutrition throughout the week. Plan, so that your daily intake is optimum and best ingested by the body. For every single day plan at least one meal that has essential carbohydrates, proteins and fats. The meal should have a cereal, pulse or poultry, some vegetables and maybe a light fruity dessert. This keeps the energy levels at even keel. To have a variety of dishes try a pulao made with healthy brown rice: Hara Masala Brown Rice Pulao.

When you cook at home, freshness is assured and that is what good quality food is made of.