Chum Chum - A Traditional Bengali Sweet (Write For Us Contest Entry - 108)
Chum Chum is a popular Bengali sweet dish that is made with paneer(home-made cheese). It is a versat...
- For Paneer:
- Milk - 8 cups
- Lemon juice - One-Fourth cup For Chum Chum:
- Paneer - Prepared with 1 litre milk
- Sugar - 2 cups
- Water - 5 cups
- Saffron Strands - Few
Mix lemon juice in half cup of hot water and put aside. Boil the milk in a heavy bottomed pan over medium heat by stirring occasionally. Make sure not to burn the milk.
As the milk comes to boil, add the lemon juice gradually and stir the milk gently. The curd will start separating from the whey. Turn off the heat. Once the milk fat gets separated from the whey, drain the whey using a muslin cloth. Wrap the curds in a muslin cloth, rinse under cold water, and squeeze well. This process takes out the sourness from the lemon.
To take out the excess water, press the wrapped paneer under a heavy pan for about 1 hour.
To test if sufficient water has been removed out of the paneer, take a little piece of paneer in your palm and rub with your fingers. You should be able to make a firm but smooth ball after 15-20 seconds of rubbing it.
Chum Chum Preparation:
Place the drained paneer on a dry, clean surface and knead it for 3-4 minutes until it rolls into smooth soft dough. If the paneer is too crumbly, add a teaspoon of water. Divide the paneer dough into 8 equal parts and roll each one into a smooth oval shaped balls.
In a wide saucepan, bring 5 cups of water to a boil. Add sugar and stir to dissolve completely. Use a large pan as the Chum Chum's will double in volume while cooking in the syrup.
Add the paneer balls to the syrup and bring it back to a boil. Then turn down the heat to medium and cover the pot. Cook for 10 minutes.
Open the pot cover, turn the chum chums over and cook for another 15 minutes.
Check to see if the Chum Chum appears firm but sponge-like(with little holes on the surface). Turn off the heat and let sit for 10 more minutes.
Remove the chum chums from the syrup. Serve chilled.
Cardamom and rose essence can be added for more flavor.
Cover every Chum Chum with a few pieces of sliced pistachios.
Roll the Chum Chum in dry powdered coconut.
Top some cream on Chum Chum.
Contributed By: Manjula Bharath