Ricotta Almond Peda

It is my favorite time of the year. Dasara/Navrathri has begun and we as usual have the bombe (dolls) out and all set up. So for the first day I was thinking of making something special, not the usual stuff. I had a container of ricotta cheese in the fridge, and what better way to finish it?
Pedas! ah...they are sweet, they are soft, they come in all different colors and flavors and they are absolutely delicious. The brown not so sweet but sugary Dharwad Peda, the milky, fudgy off white Doodh peda with floral designs on top, then the saffrony Kesar Pedas.....Ah! I love them all. Just that they have to be fresh and have just the right amount of sweetness to it. I hate the ones that are too sweet.
Unlike Burfis peda is relatively easy. Burfi can be problematic if the sugar syrup consistency is not accurate, but peda is quite forgiving. So for me when ever I try something new, I start with a Peda. If the Pedas turn out nice, I think of a Burfi. So this time around it was peda.

We will need,

Ricotta cheese 1 pint
Almond 3/4 cup
Ghee 1/4 cup
Sugar 3/4 cup (adjust according to taste, I like it on the less sweet)
Salt a pinch
Saffron a few strands
Cardamon 2 pods (seeds ground into a powder and skin discarded)

  • Drain ricotta using a sieve and a cheese cloth. Reserve the cheese and discard the whey.
  • Soak the almond in warm water a few hours. Remove the skin and blend it into a smooth mixture using as little water as possible.
  • Combine the ricotta and the almond paste.
  • Heat ghee in a thick bottomed pan.
  • Throw in the ricotta almond mixture and cook till the mixture changes color and leaves the edges of the pan.
  • Mean time, cook the sugar with a 2-3 tbsps of water and melt the sugar. Remove from heat.Throw in the saffron strands.
  • Pour the sugar syrup carefully into the ricotta mixture stirring all the time making sure there are no lumps. 
  • Cook till the mixture comes together again. Stir in the cardamon powder. The mixture is ready when it begins to harden. Remove from heat.
  • When the mixture is cool enough to touch pinch small balls of the mixture and roll it between palms or shape as desired. Optional garnishes include Pista, Almonds etc.
Happy Dasara ! Happy eating and celebrating.


cookingwithsapana said...

It looks inviting ! Good one..

Vanamala Hebbar said...

ohh thumba changidhe ricotta cheese li peda na!! ..i will try it

Priya Suresh said...

Who can resist to this beautiful pedas, very nutty and damn cute.

Sudhir R said...

Dharwad Peda - A delight anytime. this a a Western twist to peda?

Kannada Cuisine said...

Thanks folks..

@Sudhir.. I guess so. Actually we get very fresh Ricotta cheese but not all that fresh Khoya. So thought of the substitution.