Food: shondesh = sweet ricotta

Shondesh is a very conventional Bangladeshi sweet. Nobody makes sweets at home in Bangladesh because it is so readily available. But here in the US every Bangladeshi attempts to make at least one kind since everything is at hand. This shondesh recipe is made with ricotta cheese bought from the store. To prepare it in the conventional way I would have to make the ricotta cheese from the milk. But hey, I love recipes that cut cooking time in half. My good friend Ishti Shama helped me in preparing this dish, since she is a pro at it.

So this is what I used, 
48 oz ricotta cheese (one 32 oz tub and half of the other) :: 2 tbs butter
3 tbs powdered milk (nido) :: 2 cups of sugar (or per your taste) :: 1 cup of whole milk
a pinch of salt; 1/2 tsp of rose water; crushed nuts to sprinkle 

Heat the oven at 400. Take a large mixing bowl and mix all the ingredients together. Take a bakeware that is deep and spray it with some oil or butter. Then pour the entire mixture into the dish. The size of the pan will determine if you want thicker pieces of shondesh or thinner. Even out the top of the mixture. Then place it in the oven for 40 minutes. When the sides start to become golden sprinkle the nuts over them and put it back in the oven. Once its done you can check with a toothpick just like a cake. If the toothpick comes out clean it is done. If it isn't then just leave the dish in the hot but turned off oven til the oven cools down. Enjoy them little square pieces!


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