I had a whole tub of Ricotta cheese sitting in the Fridge. This is not one measly tub , mind you! One whole big tub of this equals to nearly 3 cups of cheese… Sigh ! Costco shopping can be quite dangerous to me. And to the Fridge ! And to the waistline.. I mean there is only so much kalakkand and caramel cheese fudge I can make..
So there I was staring at the fridge and literally looking at the tub of Ricotta cheese and thinking – I did not buy that ! But you do what you have to do. And dinner was calling in a couple of hours . And necessity is the mother of invention ! With a little help because of the near bare contents of the fridge and little chemistry and more of if-you-are-hungry-you-can-eat-anything-, this one was made.
In any case , this one thing I created on the whim became a huge – I mean it guys… HUGE, HUMONGOUS hit at home !
Ricotta cheese is a bit like the modeling clay you can get in your hands. A blank slate to create what strikes your fancy. This time the tub of cheese became wonderful stuffed Parathas.
This one was awesome and the recipe is a sure shot keeper…
Prep time : 30-45 min Dough resting time: 1 hr Cooking time : 45 min Serves :6- 8
For the Stuffing:
Ricotta cheese : 3 cups cheese,
Boiled Potato : 2-3
Grated ginger : 1 tsp
Turmeric : 1 tsp
Salt : 1-1.5 tsp
Green Chillies or Chilli powder : Added to taste and spice level
Coriander – Jeera powder : 1.5 tsp
Garam masala (Optional) : 1.5 tsp.
Kasuri Methi : 1 tsp. Crushed well.
For the Dough:
Whole wheat flour: 3.5 cups
Ajwain : 1 tsp.
Turmeric powder / Haldi : 1/2 tsp
Kashmiri Chilli pwder : 1/2 tsp
Salt : 1/2 tsp.
Oil : 1-2 Tsp.
Very warm water : 1.5 cup + as required
Prep work :
For the stuffing:
The ricotta cheese I used, was very very moist and there fore I emptied it out on a wide Corelle bowl, whisked it well and microwaved it for about 7 min initially. The idea is to get rid of the moisture in it, if not we will have a soggy mess on our hands. Since the quantity was nearly 3 cups to begin with, it took me an additional 7 min in intervals to achieve the granular structure of cheese. Now remember , you don’t want it turn brown at all. So keep an eye on it and cook it in stages. Soon you will have very soft and granular cheese. Objective achieved!
Boil or pressure cook the potato.
Mash them all together with the spices and make 16-18 round big lemon sized balls/globes out of these.
For the Dough:
Knead the flour to get a nice soft pliable dough. Oil the surface of the dough and rest it for atleast an hour.
Make about 16-18 sized big globes out of these and keep them covered.
Making the stuffed Parathas:
Roll out the dough globe ( by dipping it into the flour if required . Usually dusting the surface of the workspace does the trick ) to a about 5 inches in size or so.
Place the smaller globe of stuffing mix in it and cover it . The idea is to tent it beautifully and seams need to be overlapping .
Roll it out gently to get a nice big sized disc of about 10-12 inches of size.
Heat a flat griddle, and shallow fry it with a tsp of oil on both sides.
Serve the sizzling hot brown flat bread stuffed with yummy goodness of cheese, potatoes and spices with a dollop of butter, a side of yoghurt and some delish mixed veg pickle.
Fresh, dewy eyed and eyes full of spark a young lady landed on the shores of opportunity in the land of the grand USA some 16 plus years ago. While the young lady has progressed in age , thoughts and wisdom, marked by the appearance of few strands of gray ( honestly, truly, I noticed 5 in total),the spark ala dimmed a bit, but still bright I hope nonetheless.
One of the first people I met, was a happy foodie couple in Boston. At that point, A1 was yet to put in an appearance, and I was happy to meet people ( ignorant of any of the pyramid scheme trap and happily oblivious as well ). While the “come over for tea” turned into recruiting for the scam/scheme and I could not wait to get out faster, I did notice these gorgeous milk burfi’s. I also did sneak in more than one. Hey if I had to sit in and listen to all that yakking on gold and gorgeous things within arm’s reach, might as well do it with some indulgence.
In any case, today on father’s day DH was in a bit of a mood. Happy smiley face, clean counters, dishes done, emptying dishwasher and more. Well no complaints, cause I love this mood. A nice card, a self bought “surprise” on the homey , techy, front and great family time. And I decided to do something that so grandly resembled hours of labor while actually needing a few min of microwave time. The best part was I did not need to hunt for the ingredients. My awesome neighbor/ friend/ b – partner decided to donate to me 3 huge tubs of Ricotta cheese before her trip to India. 2 Thumbs up! I suppose more Ricotta cheese recipes need to be made now!
This has been the perfect day and weekend is done ! But hey summer holidays on and no school tomorrow.. Which means more staying up for the kids.. Love this !
Saffron Kalakkand – Quick and Easy Cheese and Milk Fudge with Saffron and nuts
Low Fat or Part Skim Ricotta Cheese – 16 oz
Non fat Condensed Milk – 14 oz
Saffron strands : a pinch
Cardamom Pods – 1/2 tsp
Pistachios – 6
Almonds – 10
Ghee or melted butter: 1 tsp to serve as grease
Prep work :
In a spice grinder, add in the saffron strands and cardamom seeds and fine grain powder these without adding water.
Prep work 2:
Finely chop the pistachios and almonds in a food processor or spice grinder.
In a microwave safe glass bowl or container, mix the Ricotta Cheese and the Condensed Milk well. I used a wire whisk to break out the lumps and completely homogenized the mix. Took about 5 min or so
Cook in the microwave for about 12 minutes uncovered. Keep an eye out for the bubbling mix. Stop and scrape the edges and re-do this process. I did this step in about 5 stage intervals of 3 : 3: 2:2:2 min cooking . I suppose you can go all out and cook in lower intervals, but I just needed to keep a clean microwave oven. No spill mess 🙂
Next microwave covered for about 6 min or so. Stop every 2 min , scrape the sides stir and continue.
Just before the final 2 min stage add in the cardamom and saffron mix. Cook for a final 2 min. The heat in the cooked milk fudge will release the flavor or the saffron and cardamom and you will see the beautiful color of the saffron permeating the fudge mix.
The final stage should resemble soft crumbly mix . Slightly wet and moist mix would be the ideal stage to stop the cooking process.
In a square serving container , grease the bottom with ghee or melted unsalted butter. Go easy the grease part. The idea is for easy release of the pieces not to drench it !
Pour in the hot fudge mix in the prepped container with grease and add in the crushed nuts mix on the top and pat down to resemble an even surface.
Cover and allow to set in the refrigerator for an hour or so.