Milk Pedha is a very popular mithai among Goan and overall Indian community. People send small packets of pedha to their friends and family whenever there is a new baby born in the family or a marriage proposal finalized or even when they buy a new car! All happy occasions call for distributing pedhas.
Today, almost everyone buys these from mithaiwalas. But in olden days, a large quantity of milk was cooked over a low flame for a long period of time to thicken it. Then sugar was added along with other flavors such as cardamom or saffron and finally the mixture was shaped into balls. This was very time consuming. The overall process would take hours. It would also require some physical labor since you need to constantly mix it to prevent sticking and burning. I really salute the women of that generation for their patience.
Coming back to reality, I neither have that much time nor patience to make pedhas sitting near the stove for a long time with my kids doing some mischief in the background. Hence, I prefer to go the shortcut route and make them within 15 minutes max. They come out equally delicious. No one can tell the difference between the original method and this time saver method of making it. I suggest that you try this. It tastes better than store bought any day!
And let me warn you … it does require a tiny bit of muscle power but all worth it!
- Sweetened Condensed Milk such as Carnation - 1 tin ( About 397 to 400 grams)
- Milk mawa powder - 2 cups
- Saffron - a generous pinch soaked in about 4 tbsp hot milk (Optional)
- Ghee - 2 tbsp, melted
- Green cardamom - 6-7, powdered
- Nut bits such as almonds, cashew or pistachio - For garnishing (Optional)
- 1) In a non-stick heavy bottom pan, mix the first four ingredients. There should be no lumps.
- 2) Cook over low flame stirring continuously for about 10 minutes or until the mixture starts leaving the sides of the pan. At this stage, the mixture will all come together.
- 3) Switch off the flame. Add cardamom powder and mix well.
- 4) Transfer mixture to a plate so as to prevent it from over cooking with the pan heat.
- 5) Let the mixture turn warm. Grease your palms with ghee and make balls.
- 6) Using your thumb, press the ball to make a small dent. Press some nut bits on the dent if you prefer.
- Servings: Makes about 30-34 pedhas
- 1) Let the pedhas cool completely. Store in air-tight container in the refrigerator.
- 2) Pedhas taste sticky if you taste it immediately. It tastes better after a few hours, preferably a day after making these.