Maalpua (North Indian Pancakes soaked in sugar syrup)

Maalpua is a famous dessert of  various north Indian states like UP, Bihar, north-western state like Rajasthan, along with other Indian states like Orrisa, Maharashtra, Bengal. It is generally made at festivals like Holi and is also prepared as a food served to lord during worship. Normally it is taken as dessert but can also be eaten as snacks.

First time, I tasted Maalpua at my neighbour aunt’s home during my childhood days. I got to have it at her home when I visited hers place for Holi milan (a tradition to meet and greet friends and relatives by visiting each one’s place and taste their festive special food prepared). She was from Bihar and she has tradition and culture of preparing maalpuas at Holi so I got to taste that deliciously sweet dessert there. Though it was not very prevalent dish at my home’s tradition because of community difference but my mom managed to have its recipe from her but hardly she have ever tried it at home. This time after Holi, I got reminded of that dessert I used to have at aunt’s home, my then neighbour who is now residing far from my present home. Hence later I could not taste it and never made an effort to prepare at home. But this time, I made my mind to prepare it and relive its flavor again. Maalpua (North Indian Pancakes soaked in sugar syrup)
As hers version of recipe was still fresh in my mom’s mind and she informed me to include banana too, otherwise I was not going to include it. As generally I have seen people making maalpuas without  adding banana and including some Mawa instead. But as per my mom’s instructions, I  included banana in the recipe for extra softness and it also provided sweetness to the batter. Somewhere it is soaked in sugar syrup, somewhere not. But here I am soaking it in sugar syrup as in other few desserts also I included sugar syrup soaking like in gulab jamuns/Rasgullas and Badami Shahi Tukda  Recipe of Maalpua varies from individual to individual and region to region. What recipe I have applied for my Maalpua is here:
Time taken- For Preparation-15 min
                     For Coooking-20 min
Servings/Yield- 6-8 maalpuas
Category- Dessert
Milk- 500 ml
Banana- 1
All Purpose flour (Maida)- 1/2 cup
Semolina (suji)- 1 tbsp optional (roasted light brown)
Sugar- 1 tbsp+ 3/4 cup
Water- 3/4 cup
Cardamom Powder- 1 tsp
Saffron (kesar)- few strands
Pistachios- few to garnish (cut and chopped)
Silver garnish/leaf (chaandi-wark)- 1 to 2
Oil- for shallow frying
Steps to follow-
1. Boil milk and keep stirring it until it reduces to its half.
2. Remove from flame and let it cool off to warm.
3. Now mix in all-purpose flour, banana, roasted semolina and 1 tbsp of sugar (for slight sweetness). Beat and whisk well, for that you can use hand blender. The resulted batter should be having the consistency like of Uttapams or used for making fritters (not too thick nor too runny)
4. Heat oil in a pan and shallow fry both sides until light brown. Or grease a pan with oil, put one ladle-ful of batter in the center and with the back of ladle spread out this batter in the form of circle that is not very thin, a little bit thick like uttapams. After few seconds you’ll notice small holes there in the circle and puffing at the center.
5. At this time, drizzle few drops of oil around the circle, and scratch in with flat ladle from all over.
6. When prepared maalpua stats getting light brown from base side, flip it over and light brown other side also.
7. Likewise prepare all maalpuas. Meanwhile you are preparing maalpuas, take one vessel and put in sugar with equal quantity of water. Let it heat on other flame until one wired sugar syrup is formed.
8. Remove from flame and mix some saffron strands and cardamom powder in sugar syrup.
9. Now either soak maalpuas in sugar syrup or pour that syrup over maalpuas.
10. Plate up garnished with silver leaf and cup pistachios. Enjoy warm or chilled as per your liking. Maalpua (North Indian Pancakes soaked in sugar syrup)
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