Kalakand - 1, A Ricotta Cheese Microwave Version
Kalakand Barfi 1 - Microwave Method
Kalakand is one of the most popular, traditional, old fashioned Indian sweet from rajsthan and northern state of Uttar Pradesh in India. In old days, name of a good sweet shop in India depended upon how good their Kalakand was. In modern times, so many new sweets have come up that the new generation of young Indians is often unfamiliar with it. In this American version, ricotta cheese is used in place of condensed milk and it is cooked in a microwave. It is very easy to make and is popular at parties. If you do not have ricotta cheese, use finely ground Paneer.
Although it is also known as a milk cake in India, it has no similarity to the usual flour and egg cake. Give it a try, it is delicious. This recipe uses American cup measures and uses 800 power microwave.
Edited June 2020
1 1/4 cup or 9 oz. or 250 gm. Ricotta cheese
1/2 cup or 3 oz. or 90 gm unsalted butter
1 1/4 cup or 7 oz. or 200 gm. sugar*
1 1/2 cup or 5 oz. or 150 gm non-fat (skimmed) milk powder. Have a little extra, sometimes more is needed.
1 litre or 11 inch x 8 inch transparent, rectangular, Pyrex dish. Transparent is better, because you can see through to the base as it is cooking.
Place butter in the Pyrex or microwave safe dish and cook on high for 2 minutes or until it melts.
Take out, add Ricotta cheese and mix with a fork, until it looks smooth.
Add sugar (50-/50 sugar and Splenda mix, if sweetener is being used), mix and beat with the fork until it looks smooth.
Add milk powder and mix with a fork until it is smooth. If it is too runny, add a little extra milk powder than the recipe calls for. It should be like cake batter consistency. Spread it out evenly to cover the entire dish.
Microwave on full, 800-1000, for 8 minutes, stirring it every 2 minutes in between. It fluffs up a little, like a cake, more on the sides than the centre. Level the surface out each time you stir it.
Towards the end, it will begin to look a bit crumbly/curdled/lumpy.
Take it out, break it up with a fork a little. Microwave on full for further 1 1/2 minutes. It will look a bit more crumbly/curdled now and the edges will begin to look a little golden coloured.
Take it out, gently press/firm it with a fork, to make it level. By now, it begins to look a little set and slightly golden brown at the base. Microwave on full for 1 minute.
Take it out, firm it gently and microwave for 1 minute. It should be completely set by now. If it is not, microwave for a further 1 minute. At the end, it must be set.
Allow to cool and cut into 1 1/2 inch or 4 cm. Squares. Store in airtight jars.
There are many repeats of the same step and it is easy to loose count of where you are. It is a good idea to tick each step as you have done it.
Oven performance vary, so you may need to cook once or twice more or less than given in the recipe. Towards the end, cook for 1 minute each time, to prevent it from burning. It becomes firmer, after a few minutes, as it cools off.
*To make a low sugar version, use 3/4 cup sugar and 3/4 cup Splenda calorie free sweetener.