These coffee and walnut ragsulla are Indian sweets given a very British flavour twist. They are like little soft sponges of milk curd soaked in a fabulously sweet coffee syrup. The sweets can take a little practice to get right – the key is to assess how wet the chhana is and adjust the flour and sugar quantities accordingly.
Pour the milk into a large pan over a high heat and bring to the boil. Turn off the heat. Add the lemon juice and stir until the milk curdles and leaves a green, watery liquid. Place the muslin-lined sieve or colander over a bowl, and pour the milk through it to drain the curds (chhana). Discard the watery liquid and place the sieve or colander under the cold tap and run water through the chhana to stop them cooking and becoming tough (it will also remove the lemon juice). Squeeze out the excess water, then leave the chhana to drain, weighted by a saucer with a mug on top, into the bowl for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, place 700ml water, the coffee and caster sugar in a large pan over a medium–high heat and bring to the boil for 5 minutes, until slightly reduced and a little syrupy. Set aside in the pan.
When the chhana have drained, turn them out of the cloth and place them on a work surface – they should be a creamy, yet firm consistency. If they are too wet, use kitchen paper to absorb some of the moisture. Place the chhana in a bowl and add the icing sugar to sweeten to taste – they will also absorb a lot of sweetness from the syrup when cooking, so err on the side of caution.
A tablespoon at a time, mix in enough flour so that the mixture just holds together when you roll it into balls. Using damp hands, roll 12 small golf-ball-sized sweets (ragsulla).
Drop the ragsulla into the sugar syrup and boil for about 15–20 minutes, until cooked. (You can test this by dropping one ragsulla into cold water – if it sinks, it’s cooked.) Remove from the pan and serve in bowls with a little of the remaining syrup drizzled over.