SONDESH…..a very commonly found BengalI sweet in sweet counters of Bengal. But nowadays few sweet shops have started to sell in different parts of our country, but very rare. In Bangladesh it is known as PRANAHARA.
Made up of very less ingredients which sums up to give a great amount of taste. Sondesh are very high in protein and very convenient to keep in tiffins. I always try to atleast store a small batch of it in my kitchen shelf. They are often made in 2 types of paag (Sugar consistency). Either norom (soft) or Kora (hard) paag. I prefer norom paag.
Below is the recipe which yields 20 sondesh.
2 ltrs full cream milk
Few pinches of citric acid
1+1/2 cup icing sugar
1 tsp green cardamom powder
1 tsp of rose essence
few raisins to garnish
Take a heavy bottom vessel. Add milk and give it one boil. Switch off the flame. Let it rest for 2 minutes. Now add citric acid in pinches till the milk curdles and whey separates. Strain the chenna in a colander. You can store the whey to add in wheat flour to make a super soft chapaties or use as a gravy for vegetables. Leave the chenna aside for 20 minutes. It should be not more than that otherwise your sondesh will become crumbly.
After 20 minutes add chenna in a mixer jar with sugar. Blend to a very fine paste.
Heat a non stick pan. Add the chenna mix into it. Keep on sautéed till you get a dough like consistency. It takes hardly 5-6 minutes. Now switch off the flame and let it cool for a while, about 15 minutes.
Tansfer the sautéed chenna on kitchen counter. Add rose essence and cardamom powder. Knead the dough till you get smooth paste. Divide the dough into 20 small balls.
Apply some oil on your palm and make a ball. Press a bit. Press one raisin in between and place it on a plate. Repeat the same for other portions too. Sondesh is ready☺.
I would suggest to have sondesh always at room temperature. Though you store it in refrigerator, take it out half an hour before serving.
You can store sondesh maximum for 2-3 days. After that it loses moisture and becomes hard.