Ricotta and Panner Peda


After several years I have started watching a Hindi soap rifling off the internet. I would have loved to watch it legit but for three reason. I am a streamer and I don’t even own a TV, though technically Honey has one in the basement it is far too complicated. That damn thing comes with four remote controls. Turning it on is a nightmare, let alone surf for the right input and subsequently the channel. I did rather solve some trigonometry sums than try to venture into the realm of TV. Miss you KEONICS on/off TV. Two, Hotstar does not stream in USA. I wrote them several times but they would not listen. They don’t even have it on amazon prime channels or Netflix. I almost fell of the chair thinking of Desi soaps on Netflix/Amazon prime. They can fit in tens and thousands of content in the space needed to fit in just Kyun Ki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi. Imagine Game of Thrones versus Kum Kum Bhagya, economics of cloud bytes!!

Post justification for rifling, let us get to the soap. Boy! It is hard to wait. I mean being a streamer and oldest of millennials I loose out on waiting game even before it starts. Hello! how can you go on for days without watching how it ends. Not that I did not watch soaps before. I do remember watching several of them on Doordarshan including Shanti and Swabhiman but those were the times we had only them to watch and nothing else. If there was a power cut during the air time we lost those episodes forever. Also I remember watching a weepy called  Thoda Hai Thode Ki Zaroorath Hai. This one was probably a weekly. Not sure though, it is been a long time and as can be expected I abandoned it midway after it got too tedious. I did watch the Kyon Ki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi initially when Tulasi was a Physics MSc topper (anyone remember?) and abandoned it once she because bahu wearing ridiculous jewelry/sari. I should mention a disclaimer here. I did watch Iss Pyar Ka Kya Naam Doon the original one. It so happened that when the male lead quit the show there was a great hubbub, it was in the newspapers, internet everywhere. I was the proverbial cat that got curious and rifled though the internet and saw one of the episode. The male lead was super attractive, female lead good, story intriguing and it got me hooked. The soap was by then off air and here I was trying to catch up from episode 1. I did manage to watch the whole thing in about a week, of course forward tab helped. Since I started with last episode, there was no waiting to know the end and it suited me perfectly.

Now for the current soap, how is that the hero and heroine always manage to tangle their dupatta/watch, bracelet /watch. God knows, it is like they wear their accessories with single intention of getting tangled with the other person. It has never once happened to me in real life and I am a rather clumsy person, yeah I have stumbled awkwardly in platform heals, tumbled down wearing PJs but never got tangled in another person’s accessories, not even in my sisters long hair back when we used to share the same bed, not even when sleeping like a logs. I always wonder how the writers came up with this kind of situations. And then hero and heroine manage to get locked in store rooms/ horse stables/lifts/jungle lodges, their own homes and what not. And the viewers are supposed to interpret it as a romantic getaway! Wonder if the writers have any clue how it might pan out in real life? If I ever get locked in a store room or lift with Honey, it would scare the living daylights out of me. What are we to eat? what about coffee? Honey would turn into a vampire without periodic ingestion of caffeine.(Periodic I mean once every 60-75 minutes) Even if single but people with mutual interest were locked in I seriously doubt if they think of a song and a dance instead of figuring out a rational way to get out. So much for willful suspension of disbelief, but hell I am hooked now and I cannot stop watching. Time to check into soap rehab -now called 'netflix'.
  
How the hell did I end up writing about soaps when I should have been writing about Peda? There is a connection. Yesterday was Sri Krishna Janmashtami and I made some Pedas. Every time I think of Krishna, I do think of Nitish Bharadwaj –remember the guy who played Krishna in the original BR Chopra Mahabaharata? There is goes, even gods are not free from the clutches of soaps, I am a mere mortal. After all this I did not even realize my pedas were out of focus. But it is too late, Pedas are gone. I will go ahead anyway.

This is what I do every festival season, get vats of ricotta cheese and sneak it in as many dishes in every possible combinations.
Here we go, we will need,

Fresh Paneer 1 measure
Ricotta cheese 1 measure
Jaggery 1/2 to 3/4 measure
Cardamon 1 pod (seeds crushed. save the skin to make masala chai)
Ghee a few tsps

Method.
  • Crumble the Paneer into a thick non stick pan. Scoop the ricotta into it and mix. Place the mixture on low heat. 
  • Crush the jaggery and stir it into the cheese mixture. Keep stirring gently so that the mixture does not burn. The mixture will loosen up but keep stirring till it leaves the edges and comes together into a ball. Remove from heat.
  • Stir in the crushed cardamon. Using the back of a ladle, rub the mixture against the bottom of the pan. 
  • Once the mixture is cool enough to handle (but very warm), remove it onto a greased platter and rub it well using the heal of your hand till the mixture is soft and no longer crumby. Pour in some melted ghee if the mixture is sticky or feels too dry. 
  • Make it into a log and pinch balls the size of a gooseberry and press it into desired shapes. Refrigerate or consume immediately.


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