Kala Jaam/Jamun

Kala Jaam/Jamun

Kala Jamun- A bolder smokier version of Gulab Jamun.I won’t lie if I tell you that I like these more. I love the thick, pleasantly bitter crust soaked in cardamom scented syrup.

Ever since I came to States, I have been making jamuns using milk powder, and while those are amazing the ones with milky mawa are authentic- those are utterly soft and truly melt in the mouth. I add some fresh chenna while making these, the texture and the taste is wonderful. Reminds me of little halwai shops in the nooks of delhi where trays of these sit on decorated counters. One of the very few mithai which my kids really adore.

Printable Recipe


Makes 20-22 pieces


For the Jamuns

  • 250 gms mawa/khoya
  • 100 gms chenna or soft fresh paneer
  • 4 tbsp all purpose flour(maida) 
  • Scant pinch of baking powder 
  • 1/4 tsp cardamom powder 
  • 2-4tbsp of whole milk(as needed) 
  • Ghee or oil for frying

For the sugar syrup

  • 1.5 cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup water 
  • 3-4 drops of fresh lemon juice 
  • 1-2 tbsp rose water 
  • 1/4 tsp cardamom powder 


In a large wide dish, fine grate the mawa and crumble the chenna, if using paneer, make sure it’s soft and grate it very well, there should not be any lump or big pieces of mawa or chenna.Add all purpose flour, baking powder and cardamom. Start adding milk a tbsp at a time and gently mix. I needed about 3 tbsp. Don’t squish or squeeze,depending on the fat content of your mawa, adjust the milk quantity to make a soft dough. Dough will be slightly sticky, use some ghee if needed to bring it together. No kneading of dough needed. Let rest for 15 mins, covered with a damp cloth. 

While the dough is resting, make the sugar syrup, mix sugar and water and let come to a slow boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 5 mins. Add the rosewater and cardamom and lemon juice. Keep warm. 

Heat up enough oil(or ghee) in a pot(or kadhai)on low- medium. Pinch small portions of the dough and roll them between your palms to make a smooth round ball. You would get about 12-15 jamuns. Keep them covered. 

To check the temperature of oil, drop a small portion of dough into the oil, it should come floating up slowly. If it comes up fast, the oil is too hot, if it settles to the bottom, the oil is cold. Fry the jamuns 4-5 at a time. They will plump up bit. Fry them for about 3-4 mins on all sides till they are dark brown in color. 

Drain on a paper towel. And immediately add to warm sugar syrup. Repeat with all the jamun batches. Cover them and let soak for atleast 30 minutes in syrup. These need a longer soaking time than gulab jamuns. Enjoy!

Thanks for stopping by!

3 thoughts on “Kala Jaam/Jamun

  1. Dear Tanvi,

    I got an email from you after a gap of five years. I could not locate you on Face Book either. I used to feel it was huge loss for me as you gave perfect recipes for North Indian Kayasth food. Did I accidentally get dropped from your distribution? How do I get the recipes I missed?

    So happy to get this mail. Thank you so much Tani! I hope life has been treating you well. I remember you had one baby. How is your family doing?

    Love to you,


    Sent from Mail for Windows 10

    1. Thank you Ruchika. I took a break and it went on for 5 years. Started doing it again. Thanfully I never removed any email lists 🙂 Life has been good and busy. Have two kids now . Thanks for checking on me.
      Take care.

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