Sugar Free Sandesh
The older I get, the more I realize what sacrifices my mom made while I was growing up. If I had to describe what she did in a sentence she pretty much walked in snow, up hill, both ways while dragging the entire kid crew along on a sled. Heh.
I’m seriously not kidding. I’m amazed at how she managed to work full time at least 6 days a week (often 7) taking public transportation to get there. Raised 3 kids. Made sure we were enrolled in the best school possible. Made sure we were enrolled in plenty of extra circular activities. Cooked home made food practically every night. And always with a smile on her face. And always with the attitude that she could always squeeze in time to help someone else. I honestly don’t appreciate her enough but I do think of this once in a while and I’m just shocked and in awe. She was my age when she was already doing all this, but when I grow up, I hope I measure up somewhat.
My mom is quite a fabulous cook who loves to feed. I’m not being gushy or overly sentimental. I lived at home when I was going to college in India. And every day before I left home she’d hand me TWO bags, about the size of plastic grocery bags in the US, filled with my food for the day. Both a mid morning snack and a full lunch. Yeah, I do love eating and I do eat a lot more than you’d expect for someone my size. BUT I do not eat two grocery bags of food every day. Luckily I had a big group of friends who had absolutely no problem helping me out. I sometimes complained to my mom that she made me carry all this food all the way to college just to feed everyone else. I think that just made her happier.
The pineapple sandesh I’m sharing with you today was one that wouldn’t last long after my mom made it. My older brother and I used to fight over who was overeating their share. Sometimes we’d divide it up before she’d even get close to finishing. She made this using sugar, but obviously since I’m sugar-free, I used honey instead. I made one batch using stevia – but that honestly tasted odd. A light honey works much better.
Besides the fact that my mom is an inspiration for many of the dishes you see on Flip Cookbook, I’m actually making this for this month’s Go Ahead Honey, It’s Gluten Free. Which I’m hosting. Read all the details on how you can participate.
Sugar Free Sandesh
Makes: 8 servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Ready in: 45 minutes
- 1/2 gallon milk
- 1/2 – 1 cup yogurt / whey (yogurt water)
- 1/4 cup light honey
- 1 20 oz can sliced pineapples in its own juice (not syrup)
- crushed / sliced almonds or pistachios for garnishing (optional)
2. Add the yogurt / whey (yogurt water) to the milk. Stir gently. The milk will curdle – aka the milk solids will separate from the whey.
3. Line a strainer with cheese cloth and strain the curdled milk. You can save the whey and use it to make more sandesh!
4. Gather the corners of the cheese cloth and squeeze out most of the whey. You don’t want it to be completely dry. This is called “chenna”.
5. Put the chenna into a food processor with the honey. Blend till smooth. The idea is to make it smooth without any grit – not a paste.
6. Place the pineapple slices on a plate and shape the chenna on top. Garnish with chopped pistachio or almonds or nothing! You can also shape the sandesh into balls etc. Allow it to cool in the fridge before serving.