Bhapa Doi ~ Steamed (or Baked) Yogurt Dessert

Despite having a stock pile of recipes that I wanted to try for Easter I was simply unable to try them out in time. Some recipes needed tweaking and some needed better pictures to be clicked. In the midst of it all I randomly tried my hand at making a dessert to use up some leftover condensed milk from my homemade Nutella making session - after making two batches of it I had plenty of half used tins which had to be put to better use and I came across this recipe idea while browsing on the net. I referred to a few before zeroing on the measures which are my own as I had to make use of every drop of condensed milk. Thankfully my experiment didn't fail although the dessert was a tad too sweet for my liking but I guess with some extra milk added to it, it should serve the purpose next time. 

This dessert is a marvel. No wonder the Bongs are crazy over it. It is one lovely dessert to make with minimum effort and with simple ingredients! Originally a steamed dessert, you can easily make it in the oven if you have one and chill it overnight if you have a party the next day. Seriously, I love make ahead desserts, its just one less thing to do the next day. Plus, who doesn't like chilled desserts? While the term 'dessert' brings to mind the fancy western delights like mousses or cheesecakes or puddings or flans this one is as desi as it can be. If you skip the flavouring, all you need is milk, condensed milk and the most important and humble ingredient - yogurt (curds as we call it in India).

If you are a fan of milky desserts then you will love it. It is creamy, sweet and delicious, but of course if you don't mind the curdled taste. I am sure that those who enjoy flavoured, sweetened yogurt or Srikhand will love this one too. 

In Bengali, 'bhapa' means steamed and 'doi' means yogurt/curds. It is a festive dessert that you can make in a hurry (forget the chilling if you want to serve this dessert in a couple of hours). You can always cool the dessert completely and place the ramekins in a baking tray filled with chilled water till you are ready to serve. It will taste just as yum!

Bhapa Doi ~ Steamed (or Baked) Yogurt Dessert
Prep time: 5 mins (plus 1 hour if you are making hung curd at home) | Baking time: 30 mins | Servings: 6

Other things:
1. Grease 6 ramekins lightly with butter. Preheat oven to 180 degrees C (see notes if you wish to steam instead of bake this dessert)
2. In a bowl, whisk together the condensed milk and yogurt and add the milk until you get a smooth mixture free of lumps. Sprinkle the cardamom powder and mix
3. Pour the mixture into the prepared ramekins leaving a little gap on top (don't fill upto the brim). Place the ramekins in a spacious baking/roasting tin and pour boiling water carefully from one corner of the roasting tin taking care to see that no water gets into the ramekins. Fill until the ramekins are immersed 3/4th into the water. This technique is called as bain-marie.
4. Carefully transfer the tin into the oven and bake for about 25-30 mins or until the skewer/knife inserted comes out clean. Cover the mouth of the tin with a sheet of aluminium foil if you see that dessert browning quickly.
5. Remove and cool completely before serving. You can either use a palette knife to loosen up the dessert from the ramekins and invert them onto a serving place or just serve the dessert in the ramekins. 

1. To make 1 cup of hung curds place 1-1/2 cups of thick curds in a bowl lined with thin muslin/cheesecloth. Wrap up the contents together in a bundle and hang it over the kitchen sink (or any height with a bowl underneath to collect the dripping liquid) - for about 45mins - 1 hour. While the excess liquid will dribble away you will be left with a thick curd. Use as directed.
2. Depending on how sour the curds is you can adjust the quantity of milk upto 1 cup. Try to use fresh curds that is not sour at all or the dessert won't taste very good.
3. This dessert is pretty sweet and dense. You can adjust the sweetness by adding only 3/4th cup of condensed milk instead of 1 cup. Baking time may vary according to the modifications made to the recipe so keep an eye out and check the dessert for doneness after 25mins
4. If you wish to steam this dessert instead of baking it, then just bring water to boil in a steamer (idli steamer) and when the water comes to a rolling boil with steam escaping the pan, place the ramekins instide and cover the mouths with some foil. Steam for 25-30 mins or till the knife inserted comes out clean. You may require to top up the boiling water from time to time. If there isn't sufficient steam the dessert won't cook properly.

Recipe Credit: Sanjeev Kapoor

Labels: , , ,