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Monday, 26 December 2016

Amla Candy Recipe / Candied Indian Gooseberry


Among all the seasons ,Winter season is my favourite. One of the many reasons for which is the abundance of juicy fruits and vegetables during this time of the year. It is a visual delight to see the local markets here in Gurgaon flooded with colourful seasonal veggies and fruits. Amla or Indian gooseberry is one among the winter fruits loaded with countless health benefits.

Being packed with Vitamin C, amla or the Indian Gooseberry contains numerous nutrients that actually help you live a longer and healthier life. Also the presence of compounds like poly phenols, minerals like Iron, Zinc and Vitamins like Carotene and Vitamin B complex in gooseberries improve immunity and can keep a number of disease at bay.                                 
Source : http://www.thehealthsite.com/diseases-conditions/top-9-health-benefits-of-amla-or-indian-gooseberry/

When in season I include amla in daily diet by adding it to my juices and in the form of chutney and to enjoy the benefits of this super fruit throughout the year , I make pickles, jams and mouth freshener using Indian gooseberry.  Amla candy is a super delicious and tongue tickling sun dried candied gooseberry which has all the benefits of the fruit and is just perfect for the fussy eaters. In fact it is the best way of making  the kids eat this super fruit. The only candy which can make both kids and mommies smile :) This candy can be easily made at home using just 2 ingredients Amla (Indian Gooseberry) and Sugar. To add flavor and make it more healthier i have used dry ginger powder as well. You can even add black salt or cumin powder as a variation.

The berries are cooked in boiling water for a while. There are 2 reasons for this step. One is to get rid of the bitter juices and the second is soften them, so that the seed can be easily removed and the gooseberries can be cut into segments. Sugar and dry ginger powder is added to the slices so obtained and they are set aside for 3 days, during which the sugar melts and the gooseberry slices get soaked up in the syrup. The slices are strained from the syrup and sun dried for 2-3 days or until all the juice dries up. Finally the candy is coated with little powdered sugar . This Amla Candy is sweet , sour and slightly spicy in taste. The reserved syrup can be further cooked and reduced to give the Amla sherbet which is another delicious way of having this super fruit.
                            
The amla candy so obtained can be stored for months in an air tight container. It is best to conclude a meal, as it helps in digestion and serves as a good mouth freshener. It is also best remedy for nausea and travel sickness. Apart from this amla candy can be had at any time of the day to satisfy some sweet tongue tickling cravings. It can be used in cakes and desserts as fruit candy for crunch and flavour.
Preparation Time : 6-7 days
Cooking time : 2 minutes
Serves: A medium jar of Amla Candy.
Ingredients:
  • ½ kilo grams of Amla / Indian Gooseberry ( 18-20 medium sized Amla)
  • 300 grams sugar
  • 1 tablespoon of dry Ginger powder / Saunth Powder

Method:
  1. Wash the gooseberries thoroughly in water and pat dry with a kitchen towel. In a big sauce pan bring 3-4 cups of water to rolling boil.


  2.  Add the gooseberries to boiling water and allow to cook for 2 minutes.


  3. Put off the flame . Cover the sauce pan and allow the gooseberries to remain in the hot water for 10 minutes. The color of the gooseberries changes from green to yellow.



  4. Strain the water and collect the Gooseberries. (The water can be used to wash hair).


  5.  When cool enough to handle , cut along the striations of the gooseberry with a knife to get 6 slices from each piece. Discard the seed.


  6. Place all the gooseberry slices in a big vessel. Reserve 2 tablespoon of sugar and add the remaining over them. We will powder the reserved sugar and will use it in the end to coat the candy.
Add 1 tablespoon of dry ginger powder and mix everything very well by tossing the gooseberries in the container. Set aside the container for 3 days.


  7.  After one day , we can see the sugar has dissolved in the gooseberry juices and the slices of gooseberries float in the sugary syrup. Stir it and keep covered.



  8.  On the third day the gooseberry slices soak the sugary syrup and become heavy and settle to the bottom.

  9.  Strain the gooseberries from the syrup and reserve the syrup. The syrup can be used to make Sherbet. 

  10. Spread individual gooseberry slices on a plate or a plastic sheet and sundry for 2-3 days.



  11.  Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of powdered sugar over the candy and mix well.  


 12. Healthy and delicious amla candy is ready to be popped in. Store it in air tight container and enjoy.


  13. To make the sherbet , boil the  reserved syrup from step 9 for 10 minutes or until it reduces to half its original volume.



  14. Let the concentrated syrup cool down and fill it in clean, dry and sterilised bottle. Refrigerate the bottle and use as per requirement. Add 3 tablespoon of this concentrate to a glass of water. Stir well and enjoy a refreshing and delicious Amla drink.


Notes:
  • Select fresh , unblemished gooseberries which are large in size and are slightly yellow in color as such fruit is juicy and less sour and hence require less amount of sugar to make the candy.
  • Do not over cook the amla as on doing so the amla will lose nutrition, turn mushy and will not retain proper shape on cutting. 
  • Along with sugar and dry ginger powder, black salt and roasted cumin powder can also be added to the cooked gooseberry slices as variation. The color of the candy will be brown in this case.
  • Instead of sugar jaggery powder can also be used to make this candy. 
  • Sprinkling sugar increases the shelf life and makes the candies gooseberries non sticky. You can skip that step if desired.
  • The candy is very addictive and you can trust my words and make a big batch while the fruit is in season.
I hope you would love to try out this recipe . Do not forget to give your valuable feed back.

For more Indian Gooseberry recipes, do check my posts on ,


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