Appears in

Oxford Companion to Food

Oxford Companion to Food

By Alan Davidson

Published 2014

  • About

rasgulla (Hindi), or rasagolla (Bengali) or rasbari (Nepali), a Bengali sweet popular throughout India. Essentially it is a small dumpling made of a mixture of chhenna (curd: see also indian sweets) and a little semolina which is boiled in syrup, and kept submerged in syrup until it is needed, so that it becomes soft and spongy. They are eaten cold, and can be served ‘wet’—with syrup, or a creamy sauce—or ‘dry’, coated with sugar or nuts. The finest recipes omit the semolina, giving an extra spongy result. They have a curious ‘squeaky’ texture, derived from the curd. Rasgullas and related confections form the basis of a whole ‘family’ of Indian sweets. They may be filled with nuts and raisins; or stuffed with candied peel. There are giant stuffed versions, filled with pistachio barfi, called ‘rajah’s dish’ (double size) and ‘nawab’s dish’ (four times ordinary size, with four different fillings).