You really need a sweet tooth to enjoy ‘Gulab Jamun’ dessert. The plum sized milk solids fried in ghee and soaked in rose flavoured sugar syrup are gulab jamuns. They come in many shapes, sizes and colours and so delicious – gulab jamuns just melt in the mouth! The literal meaning of gulab jamun in Hindi is berry sized balls (Jamun) soaked in rose (gulab) sugar syrup, the special sweet dish served in India during the festival season.
Milk boiled to reduce to solid and mixed with refined plain flour to make bite size balls and fried in cooking oil or preferably ghee (clarified butter) and dunked in sugary syrup that is flavoured with rose water. For an authentic look the gulab jamuns are garnished with flakes of almond and pistachio nuts. Weddings, special occasions and most festivals celebrated with sharing gulab jamun sweets for family and friends.
Curry houses in the UK offer gulab jamuns on their desserts menu, a must try dessert on your curry night if you are not too fussed about the calorie stack up, rather enjoy this sticky pudding!
About Gulab Jamun Dessert
Rich, creamy, sweet and delicious are only a few words to describe gulab jamun dessert. The rose flavoured sugar syrup used to soak gulab jamuns infuse delightful aroma into the gooey balls of milk solids.
Deep frying the milk powder and plain flour mix balls in ghee make gulab jamuns irresistible to taste. Addition of luxury cardamom spice and flaked nuts intensify the urge to enjoy gulab jamuns as often as possible.
Traditionally gulab jamuns are made of reduced milk solids (known as khoya in Hindi), but for speed and convenience ready mix of milk powder and plain flour are used to prepare the jamuns (plum sized balls). These balls are then deep fried in pure ghee to accentuate flavours.
The deep fried jamuns are then soaked in crushed cardamom and rose water infused sugar syrup for glazing before serving. Just a word of caution that gulab jamuns do contain numerous calories!
Gulab Jamuns are for special occasions to enjoy and indulge ourselves in for a treat. So, when it comes to calorie conscious, then you wouldn’t really enjoy this dessert.
Yes, gulab jamuns are full of sugar and rich milk solids, but now and then tasting this dessert is not that bad. Especially the pleasure and good feeling you get from its flavours.
Gulab jamuns are essentially made of milk solids soaked in rose water flavoured sugar syrup. The key ingredients to make gulab jamun dessert are milk powder and plain flour. Then pure ghee for deep frying and loads of sugar syrup for soaking. For extra exotic flavours rose water and crushed cardamoms added.
So, very simple ingredients are required to prepare gulab jamuns, but the results are really incredible.
Most preferred way of enjoying gulab jamun dessert is in a cold state. Since this dessert can be stored in the refrigerator for over a week, you can eat it as a typical dessert when it is cold. Some sweet toothed folks add vanilla ice cream to gulab jamun dessert for an extra cool effect.
Unfortunately gulab jamun is not suitable for vegans. The milk solids are difficult to replicate a vegan option by using plant based or nut milks.
Gulab jamun desserts come in a variety of shapes, sizes and flavours.
Kaala (black) jamun is the type of jamun served dry without any sticky sugar syrup.
Rava gulab jamun is another style where the plain flour is replaced with rava (or semolina) for an interesting texture for gulab jamun.
Most favoured gulab jamun is of course the authentic khoya gulab jamun for its fluffy, soft and addictive taste.
Stuffed gulab jamun is another variety which adds extra delicacy to the already irresistible traditional ones.
Do you know, you can buy readymade gulab jamun sold in cans? Just pop into your local Indian store!