Raskadam is a traditional east Indian sweet, also known as Kheer Kadam. It's a combination of two different sweets, Rasogola and Sondesh. The center is made of a small harder and dryer kind of Rasogola, while the outer layer is made of plain Sondesh. Then it's coated with dry mawa powder, which gives it a delicate authentic look. It's suppose to look like a Kadamba flower when cut in half, hence the name :)
Making the Chhena (Paneer)
Full cream Milk- 1 gallon
lime juice 2
water, 1 cup
Mix the lime juice with the cup of water and set aside. Boil the milk over medium heat and let it simmer for a few minutes, then switch off the flame. After two minutes stir in the lime juice mix. Keep on stirring till the Chhena solids separates and the milk liquid becomes transparent. Keep some more lime juice handy in case you need more for the coagulation. Once it's done strain it in a cheese cloth immediately, and pour some ice cold water to bring it's temperature down. Gather the cheese cloth from the sides, then press and squeeze out any possible excess water from chhena. You might try placing a heavy container on top of it for a while, that usually takes most of the water out.
Making the Rasogola
1/4th of the prepared chhena
Pinch of yellow (or caramel) food color
3 cups water
1 cup sugar
kesar essence(or caramel essence) Take 1/4th of the chhena in a large plate and mash it with your fingers till smooth. It should take about 10 minutes. Then knead in yellow or caramel food color. Here I have used the yellow food color to go with the Kesar flavor. Cover the dough with damp muslin cloth(or wet paper towel) and rest for 10 minutes. Divide into small portions and shape them into roundels. Keep aside in a plate covered with the damp cloth.
Take water and sugar in a heavy bottom pan and bring it to a simmer, add in the essence. Carefully drop few of the roundels one after the other. Try making a few at one batch rather than putting them all at once. Cover it and cook for 15 to 20 minutes. The Rosogolas will puff up double in size in a few minutes, but keep on cooking till it gets firm. Take out the Rosogolas using a slotted spoon and drain out the excess syrup through a colander(or sieve) till it's room temprature. Here I put the Rosogolas in dry mawa to soak up the liquid. Then I dust the excess mawa off.
Making the Sondesh
3/4th of the prepared cheena
Sugar, 2 cups
Rose Essence, few drops
Sweet Cream Butter, 1 tsp
Preparing basic Sandesh dough:
Mix sugar and Chhena in a bowl, and knead till the sugar dissolves. Taste the dough and add sugar if you want the Sandesh to be any sweeter.
Heat a wide nonstick pan in medium to low heat. Coat the butter all over the surface of the pan. Then add the Chhena and sugar mix. Cook it in low heat, stirring continuously, for about 10 to 15 minutes. Take it out of the heat and place it in a bowl to cool down to room temperature.
Preparing basic Dry Mawa:
In the same nonstick pan, take a portion of the Sandesh dough. Cook it in low heat for about 10 more minutes, stirring continuously. When it starts to solidify, try to flatten the mix with the back of the flat spatula while stirring. Switch off the heat after it starts to granulate. Place it in a flat plate to cool down.
Once it comes to room temperature, you can dry grind the mawa if you want it finer.
Scoop out equal portion of Sandesh and keep it in a plate. Take one portion and flatten it using your palm and figures. Put one Rasogola in the center and roll up the edges sealing it inside. Form it to a good round shape. Roll it in the dry Mawa powder and dust off the excess. And the Raskadams are ready:) store them in the refrigerator, and they should be good for a week.
It's convenient to use mini parchment cups, for individual storing. Here I have coated the Raskadams in colored sugar and mawa, for presentation.