Top | Savita Iyer-Ahrestani
Hema’s Melt-in-the-Mouth Mysore Paak
(recipe, Savita Iyer-Ahrestani)
This traditional dessert from the southern Indian kingdom of Mysore is available year-round but celebrated most during the annual Dussera festival in October. My friend Hema Malini Devi — whose mother, Maya Devi, is a cousin of the present maharaja of Mysore and was raised in the royal palace — gave me this recipe.
- 1 cup chickpea flour
- 3 cups plus 4 tsp. ghee (see Note)
- 2½ cups granulated sugar
- 1 cup water
- Mix the chickpea flour with 2 teaspoons of ghee, making sure to rub well and remove all lumps.
- Smear 2 teaspoons ghee on a steel or glass plate and set aside.
- In a heavy-bottomed pan, mix the sugar and the water and simmer on a low to medium flame. In another pot, melt the remaining ghee at the same time. Once the sugar melts totally, add a little of the melted ghee and all the chickpea flour and keep stirring.
- Keep the flame on medium and add the remaining ghee a little at a time every minute, stirring all the while. After all of the ghee has been added, cook until the mixture forms a honeycomb-like appearance. This is the most important step for getting the Mysore paak right.
- Once the whole mixture becomes like honeycomb, pour it onto the greased plate. Allow to cool for just 2 minutes, then with a sharp knife, cut into desired shape and size.
Ghee is available in all Indian grocery stores.