Jalebi, a delectable treat, has captured the hearts and palates of people across India and around the world. It holds a special place in most households, especially during Diwali. During Diwali prayers, we typically dip the crispy Jalebi into milk and offer it to God and distributed as prasad.
In various parts of India, you’ll discover unique twists on this classic sweet, such as Imarthi in Rajasthan, Jilapi in Bangladesh, and Jaleba in UP. This recipe uses just a few basic ingredients from your pantry and doesn’t require any fermentation. If you find yourself craving Jalebis in the middle of the night, this recipe is a keeper.
A Glimpse into History
The origins of Jalebi trace back to the Indian subcontinent, where people have been preparing it for centuries. Although the precise history remains somewhat unclear, many widely believe that Jalebi drew inspiration from the ancient Persian sweet called “zoolbia” or “zolobiyah.” Through trade and cultural exchange, this Persian dessert found its way to India, evolving into the beloved Jalebi we know today.
Steps in making Jalebi
Jalebi is more than just a dessert; it’s a work of art. Here’s a step-by-step guide to making this delicacy:
- Batter: Start by making a smooth batter by mixing all-purpose flour and yogurt. Traditionally this batter is left to ferment for a few hours, allowing it to develop the signature tangy flavor of Jalebi. I made an Instant version.
- Syrup: Meanwhile, prepare sugar syrup by boiling sugar and water until it reaches close to one-string consistency. Saffron strands and cardamom powder are added for a delightful aroma and color.
- Frying: Heat ghee or oil in a wide pan. Pour the fermented batter into a Jalebi dispenser (a small container with a spout), and carefully pipe the batter into the hot oil in spiral or pretzel-like shapes. Fry them on slow to medium heat until they turn golden and crisp.
- Soaking: Immerse the fried Jalebis in the hot sugar syrup for a couple of minutes, allowing them to soak up the sweetness and become irresistibly syrupy.
- Serving: Once the Jalebis are soaked, remove them from the syrup and serve hot, garnished with almonds, or rose petals.
This crispy sweet dipped in sugar syrup is often enjoyed during festivals, weddings, and special occasions. I have learnt it from Prasanna, one of my fellow bloggers. Jalebi, with its rich history, intricate preparation, and regional variations, stands as a testament to the culinary diversity and richness of Indian desserts.
Everyone enjoys this sweet, making it an essential part of India’s culinary heritage. So, the next time you crave something sweet, don’t forget to indulge in the irresistible world of Jalebi.
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Jalebi | How to make Instant Jalebi
- 1 Cup Maida/All purpose Flour
- 3 Teaspoon Cornflour/Cornstarch
- 2 Teaspoon Ghee
- 2 Teaspoon Yogurt
- 1/4th Teaspoon Salt
- a Pinch Orange Food Color
- 1/3 Cup Water
- 1 Teaspoon Eno Fruit Salt
- 1 Cup Sugar
- 1 Cup Water
- 1/2 Teaspoon Lemon Juice
- Oil / Ghee for frying
- Piping bag/ziploc bag/Squeezy bottle
- In a sauce pan add sugar and water and let it cook on low to medium flame. I cooked it till it was thick close to one string consistency.
- Add lemon juice to the sugar syrup to avoid crystalization. Turn the gas to the lowest flame so that the syrup stays warm.
- In a wide frying pan, add ghee or oil to heat. Let it heat on a slow to medium heat as you prepare the batter.
- Now,in a mixing bowl add all the ingredients for the batter except water and Eno Fruit salt.
- Add water little by little to make the batter not too thick or thin, it should be in a runnung consistency.
- Before adding the Eno fruit salt, make sure that the ghee in frying is hot,
- Add Eno and mix gently. The batter will turn airy and light.
- Now its time to add the batter to a piping bag, or a squeezy bottle you are using to make the jalebi.
- Slowly start making the jalebis by dropping the batter in a swirling motion.
- Fry them on low to medium flame till crisp.
- Take it out once it is crispy and dip it into the sugar syrup. Make sure they are dipped for more than a couple of minutes so that they stay crispy and do not absorb too much of the syrup.
- Repeat the process, until you have used the entire batter.
- Place the Jalebi on a serving plate and garnish it with chopped almonds and rose petals.
- Serve them hot and crsipy.