Kalakhand with Ricotta cheese
Kalakhand is one of the popular sweet dishes all over India. There are many types or variations in this sweet too. The other variation which I like is the 'Ajmer Kalakhand' as it is called, it is brown in color due to the caramelization of the milk, which means its is cooked over slow heat for a looooong time to get the good brown color. The regular kalakhand is just milk and sugar cooked long enough to dry up the milk for the grainy texture. It is seriously yummy tho!
I have been meaning to make this sweet for a long time just because my kids will eat it. And I read previously that it can easily be made with ricotta cheese, so I gave it a try. It is very easy to make, only remember to cook it on medium heat till the required texture is obtained. My Kalakhad came out little soft I thought, but after it cooled it was good and my friends said that it was good too..:)
I used 1:2 ratio of condensed milk to ricotta cheese. For this instead of using the cup measurment, I used the condensed milk can as the measurement. Therefore:
1-14 oz can of sweetened condensed milk
28 oz of ricotta cheese ( I stuffed the ricotta in the condensed milk can, twice)
1/2 tsp elaichi powder (cardamom powder)
little bit ghee
Grease a pan or a square baking dish with the ghee and keep aside.
Combine the condensed milk and ricotta cheese in heavy bottom pan or a big wok which is heavy (not the thin kind) and mix on medium heat. Add the cardamom powder half way thru and keep mixing for atleast 20 min or so, or until it starts separating way from the pan, gets thick and grainy. When all the liquid has evaporated and it looks like its getting the soft dough texture, put in into the greased pan. Pat it down to level it and put the crushed nuts on and pat it down again for them to stick. Let it cool a little before cutting into pieces.