Who Knew Desserts Were Sweet? India’s Rasgulla

Dhaka - RasgullaGiven Name: Rasagola
Alias:  Rasgulla
Place(s) of Origin: Odisha (Orissa), India
Place Consumed: Dhaka, Bangladesh
Common Features: chhena*, maida*, sugar syrup, (lemon juice)
Background: I’m a sucker for South Asian desserts, but oh are they cloying(-ly sweet).  More so than simply popping a few sugar cubes in your mouth, I think.  That sounds disgusting, please don’t do it.  But measuring mithai* by the number of times you have to take a break while eating is a good reminder that your pancreas does serve a purpose.
Apparently, rasgulla is one of the oldest Indian desserts, and coupled with that, it was often used as an offering to Lakshmi, the Hindu goddess of wealth and prosperity.
Verdict: Rasgulla however, is one of the more approachable Indian sweets.  Although it’s soaked in sugar, I feel that the lemon juice and maida helped reduce the sugar’s potency.  Sometimes cardamom and/or rose water are added, as well as pistachios, though the latter serves more as a garnish.  Still, upon looking at that giant bowl of sugar syrup, how could you not want to go bobbing for rasgullaOne good reason- it’s not water.  Flies will become your best bud.  Another?  It’s on a street in Dhaka.
Recipe: Rasgulla

*chhena (Hindi)= a curd cheese made from water buffalo milk
maida= refined and bleached wheat flour, common in Indian breads and desserts
mithai= sweets/confectionery

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