This is my 50th post friends. It is amazing that I have been doing this; in my teens would run away from -Cooking!!! My younger sister is an enthusiastic cook and is ever ready to present her skills. The only times I would be helping in the kitchen is when paatti makes Halwa and Mysorepaak. I don't remember when the transition from eating enthusiast to cooking enthusiast came by. Anyway, I have, in my opinion come a long, long way.
It was my husband's suggestion that I save the sweet for this post.
Thirattuppaal, is the sweet dish that features as one of the mainly made 'seer bakshanam' in a hindu brahmin custom, be it wedding, seemantham, first birthday or upanayanam. In fact, during the wedding, it is featured more than once. I don't know if I can restrict it to Tamilnadu, but can generalise to South India as this is the very same paal khova that most households do during festivals.
This is however, high in fat as it has, as major ingredients, the full cream milk and sugar .
To achieve 1/4 litre of Thirattuppaal you will need 2 litres of full cream milk and about 1/2 cup sugar. Since the milk supplies enough fat, it will not be necessary to add ghee, but cardamom powder is added for the flavour.
You will need a heavy bottomed deep and broad pan. You may use the base of the pressure cooker. It will be better if it has a sandwiched bottom, though not the copper bottom. I recommend that the ladle also has a long handle.
Keep this pan on fire and put the milk. Bring to boil. Reduce heat. Keep stirring off and on. Remove the milk that sticks to the sides and put it back into the boiling mass.
Allow to boil until the milk thickens and has reduced to about 1/3 of the volume.
At this stage the milk will be more like a paste.The curdled texture will come soon.
Now add the sugar and stir. The sugar will initially melt and then thicken blending with the milk. Remove from heat when you can stir with the ladle and the milk leaves the sides of the pan at that instant but spreads back.
Add 1/2 teaspoon cardamom powder and mix well.
The thirattuppaal will thicken as it cools.
The cooking time may be around an hour and a half. However, the microwave version is faster. Personally I like this method because it felt slightly dry when done using microwave.
In my family it is the first sweet that is prepared during Deepavali. I have carried on that tradition until now.
I am sending this to Shanthi's STATE SPECIALS event.