Thengai Therattipal/ Palkova (Coconut Infused)
Therattipal or Palkova is a dehydrated milk sweet, made with only two ingredients-Milk and Sugar. Therattipal is a traditional recipe made for festivals like Janmashtami and Deepawali. In our house, Therattipal is the main offering to Krishna apart from Sweet Appam and for Deepawali too we start the festival with a spoon of the Therattipal immediately after Ganga Snanam.
This time I have given a twist to the Therattipal and added roasted coconut gratings to it, which enhances the taste of this sweet dish. Anyway until we add the coconut the method of the recipe is the same. Usually, no cardamom powder is added to this sweet as the milk taste is what should pervade, but if one does prefer, it can always be added.
The coconut flavour is mild and not very intense. The milk and the coconut combine really well to give a different taste which is a welcome change from the regular Therattipal.
This recipe if made with pure organic cows milk tastes divine, as while the milk reduces you can see the natural fat bubbling out. And it tastes as though ghee has been added to it. These days since we all use milk packets or tetra pack cartons of milk we don’t see this process happening naturally and so we add a teaspoon of ghee at the end. its an optional step and the sweet will still taste the same, if not added.
While you are here please check out my other Sweet dish recipes like –
The same recipe can be followed for regular Therattipal/Palkova too. Only the coconut doesn’t have to be added.
Here is the recipe for Thengai Therattipal/Palkova(coconut-infused)-
Milk (toned milk) 1.5 litres (refer to note1) Sugar 140 gm approx (reduce if you prefer less) Coconut (grated) 1 cup
Pour the milk into a heavy-bottomed vessel or Kadai and begin to boil. It has to be reduced by almost 3/4 of the quantity by stirring constantly. For the first 10-15 minutes, constant stirring is required, thereafter keep flame on medium heat and keep stirring from time to time. As the moisture from the milk evaporates the consistency of the milk becomes denser and the texture also starts becoming granular/thready. Keep stirring until the milk has lost almost all moisture(check picture for reference) and now add in the sugar and start stirring again. Once the sugar is added the reduced milk mixture liquifies a little, it is normal and nothing to worry about. Continue stirring until the mixture loses all the moisture al does not stick to the bottom of the pan anymore. Another way to check is to put a little Palkova in a plate, just wet your hands with water, and try to take a small bit of the Palkova and shape it to a mini ball. If the ball forms, you can turn off the flame. Now in In another Kadai, put 1/2 tsp ghee and drop in the coconut gratings and start roasting it until it becomes dry and it is a nice brown in colour. Transfer it to a plate and cool it. Once cooled, add to the Palakova/Therattipal, switch on the flame and mix nicely until the coconut and the Therattipal are well integrated and switch off the flame. After adding the coconut the mixture turns a little drier. It is natural so nothing to worry. Offer it to Krishna or just have it as dessert. Enjoy. Bon Appetit. If you want just regular Therattipal stop the procedure after adding sugar and reducing it again. Add a teaspoon of ghee for a nice sheen.
STEPWISE RECIPE FOLLOWS:
1. Start by boiling the milk in a heavy-bottomed vessel or Kadai.
2. Keep stirring constantly for the first 10 to 15 minutes and keep scraping the sides of the vessel as the milk solids keep depositing there.
3. Now on medium heat and stirring every once in awhile reduce the milk until almost all moisture gets evaporated.
4. Now add in the sugar and start stirring again. The mixture liquified a little again but it is natural and again will solidify.
5. Keep stirring until the mixture does not stick to the bottom of the vessel any more. Another method to check for doneness is to take a little amount of the Therattipal and put it on a plate. Wet your fingers and take a small quantity and try to form a ball. If you are able to form a ball, that is the right consistency. Put off the flame.
6. In a small Kadai take little ghee and add a cup of grated coconut and start roasting until it becomes dry and turns a nice brown in colour. When the coconut is dry, it will not stick to the Kadai anymore. Transfer it to a plate and cool.
7. After it cools completely add it to the Therattipal, switch on the flame and stir nicely until the coconut is well integrated with the Therattipal. Once the coconut is absorbed, the mixture will become drier, this is natural and there is no need to worry. Add a teaspoon of ghee finally, just for some sheen. The Thengai Therattipal is now ready.
QUICK VIDEO OF METHOD HERE:
1. I have used Tetrapack toned milk. The more fat content in the milk the lesser the evaporation time. You can use full cream milk too.
2. It took around 1 hour to reduce 1.5 litres of milk.
3. If you don’t wish to add the coconut, the process can be stopped after adding sugar, reducing further and performing the test to see if a ball is formed.
4. If one prefers less sugar, it can be reduced a little.
5. There are many short cut methods to evaporate milk by adding milk powder etc; I use this method for making small amounts of Rabri for jalebis and other such dishes, but I don’t recommend the shortcut method for Therattipal, as this whole sweet dish is about the texture and taste.
6. Cheese too is used for quick evaporation, but again it changes the taste and texture.