Jangiri - Sweet
2 Cups Urad dhal (available from any store selling groceries from India)
1/2 teaspoon Orange/Yellow food colour
3 Cups Sugar
2 Cups Canola or Peanut Oil
6 Cardamom pods
2 ml Rose essence (From Sri Lanka/India)
Jangiri/Imerthi/Jilebi(plain flour) - Sweet
This is a mouth watering sweet from South India. The sweet that I am addicted to and make it all the time at home. Throughout Northern India you get variations of this Sweet made of plain wheat flour. Though you get them in India(n) shops, home made is the best.
Soak Urad dhal in water overnight or minimum 3 hours. Wash it thoroughly and blend it to a smooth thick batter of piping consistency adding little water at a time. Best blended 2/3 cups in 3 batches with food coloring.
For piping the batter, you can use a sturdy icing pipe with round nozzle not more than 5mm dia. Make your own (like I did): Take a thick cotton cloth 1 x 1 foot; punch a hole 3mm dia in the centre of the cloth; button stitch it to strengthen the opening either by machine or hand.
Make the syrup by boiling 3 cups of vegan sugar in 2 1/2 cups water in a 2 litre deep saucepan. Add split cardamom pods and rose essence. Keep it on low fire on one burner. Leave a heavy ladle for dunking fried jangiris in syrup.
Heat oil in a frying pan on an adjoining burner on a medium flame. When the oil is hot make jangiris* one at a time directly over the oil, one at a time. Make 3-4 pieces per batch. Fry 40-90 seconds depending on whether you want your jangiris crispy or soggy. Remove them from the frying pan with a skewer or a ladle and dunk them in the syrup one at a time. The jangiris tend to float. Do not let them. With the heavy syrup ladle hold it down. In 30 seconds, they will be well soaked and ready for draining and laying out on serving tray. Help yourself hot jangiri. It is well worth the effort!
* Piping jangiris is an art. It took me few attempts to master it. I will try to explain it. Even if it is not of the perfect shape you will still enjoy its perfect taste!
Half fill your piping bag. Or put 1/2 cup batter in your piping cotton (stitched up as described earlier) and gather it from four corners and hold it like a piping bag. Pipe over the hot oil, an inch above the surface of the oil, (not a job for a faint-hearted cook) with a steady hand, a quick 2 rings of spiralling circle closely adjoining each other (as you pipe it will try to move away); continue piping small cicles in one continuous thread over the ridge formed by the spiral and finish when the small circles cover the entire ridge; break off by stopping the piping. Move the jangiri away and pipe 2-3 more. You can practice over your batter itself before trying on the hot oil.
You will enjoy every bit of your effort!