From tea and coffee to ghee and curd, milk is used in several ways in an Indian household. It is an integral part of cooking and is enjoyed by kids, adults and elders alike. It is also used as a base to make several desserts such as custard, kheer and kulfi. In many Indian homes, milk is also used to make malai (fresh cream) which is further used to make ghee. Malai usually collects on the top of the milk when it is kept undistrubed. This malai can easily be removed from the milk and stored separately for later usage. However, if not stored properly, malai can not only spoil but also get sour. Here are some tips and tricks which will help you preserve your malai for a long time.
Where To Store
The first and the most important step is to ensure that you always keep the malai in your fridge. If you wish to keep your cream fresh for a longer period, then it would be better to straightaway store it in the freezer. Storing it in the freezer will not only help in keeping your cream ready for use whenever you wish but will also prevent it from turning sour.
Make sure that you don’t defrost your freezer while your dairy product is stored in it, as defrosting can spoil the cream in no time. Keep the temperature of your freezer low and avoid opening and closing it frequently.
Correct Vessel To Store
The quality and the type of vessel you store your malai in also plays a role in sustaining it for long. Usually steel is the best metal to keep your cream. If you wish to store it in a plastic, glass or ceramic utensil, make sure you confirm whether they are freezer-proof or not. Many glass or plastic containers crack when stored in extremely low temperatures, which is why you must always check their strength before storing your cream in them.
If you plan to make ghee from your malai later, then mix a teaspoon of ghee in it. This will sustain the taste of your malai and will help in curdling out more ghee from it.
How Long Can It Be Stored
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If you are storing your malai in the fridge, it can easily go on for 8-10 days. It is recommended that you check your cream after a week, to make sure it is not smelling bad. If you have long power cuts every now and then, it is better you don’t store your cream for more than 3-4 days.
On the other hand, if you are storing malai in the freezer, then it can easily be conserved for 20-30 days. Extremely low temperatures of the freezer will prevent the good bacteria from making the cream sour.
Some Important Tips
While storing your cream, there are some important tips you need to keep in mind. Firstly, always keep your malai covered. Either store it in an airtight container or use a lid to cover it properly. If stored without a lid in the freezer, your malai can develop a layer of ice on the top, which will deteriorate its quality.
Secondly, don’t remove it from the freezer frequently. If you wish to use a part of it, use a clean spoon to take out the required portion and quickly shift it back in the freezer.
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