Place the sphere cake tin over a small tin so that nothing topples upon the addition of cake batter.
Spray the pan with oil and line with a parchment paper. The video here explains an easy way to line the base with parchment paper. Set aside.
Step 2 - Prepare the Cake Batter
Sieve together flour, custard powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Give a quick mix and set this aside while we work on the wet ingredients.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the yogurt and sugar until homogenous. Then whisking continuously add in the oil, milk and rabdi essence.
Once mixed, fold the dry ingredients into the wet in two batches, this ensures that there is no overmixing of the batter.
Transfer the smooth batter into the prepared cake pan and bake in a preheated oven of 180 degree Celsius for 45 to 55 mins or until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.
Let this sit in the pan for another 5 mins and then invert over wire rack to release the cake. Allow it to cool completely.
Step 3 - Sugar Syrup
To make the sugar syrup take sugar, water and gently crushed cardamom pods in a saucepan.
Simply boil everything together until the sugar melts. Do not over boil. Take it of the flame, transfer to another container and allow it to cool too.
Step 4 - Rabdi Layer
In a saucepan add in the milk and bring it to a boil. While the milk is boiling over in a separate bowl, combine together the custard powder and water to form a slurry. This is our thickening agent here.
Once boiled add the condensed milk and ricotta cheese. Mix and again bring everything to a boil.
At this stage add in the prepared slurry and cook until everything thickens well for about 4-5 mins. Transfer to a separate bowl. Cling wrap in a way that it touches the rabdi to avoid formation of skin on top. The rabdi will thicken further in the fridge.
Meanwhile, blend some pineapples along with lemon juice without adding any water to a thick paste like consistency.
Now take the chilled and thickened rabbi in a bowl, add the pureed pineapple and mix. The pineapples will cut the sweetness and also will provide freshness to the cake. But it is not so much that it will overpower everything else so rest assured.
This is your rabid filling ready. Set this aside too.
Step 5 - Whipped Cream Filling
In a mixing bowl, whip together whipping cream, icing sugar and rabdi essence until stiff peaks form.
Step 6 - Assemble
Start by trimming the cake layer and dividing it into two. (To make a ball or ladoo shape we would need two half semi spheres, since I just have one pan I made one cake at a time to get 2 cakes. If you have two such pans then you can bake them together for the same time just by doubling the recipe quantities.)
Trim and cut the other cake too. So now you will have two smaller size cake layer and two bigger size cake layers.
Take the smaller one and trim the curved base to flatten it so that it is now stable to hold the rest of the layers. Apply some sugar syrup this would keep the cake moist for 3 to 4 days.
In goes a quarter portion of the whipping cream and spread it evenly. Add a border with a cream as the rabdi is little free flowing this border will hold the rabdi in its place. 3 to 4 tbsp of rabdi and then spread that too.
Crush some ladoo to make bondi and add a layer of it on top. Finally some slivered pistachios. One of the larger cake layer now goes on top. So repeat the process until we reach the very top.
To secure everything into its place we would be placing a dowel in the centre.
With whatever cream is left out crumb coat the cake. You need not be perfect here as this is just the base coat. Wipe the cake board and let it sit in the fridge for a minimum of 15 mins.
Step 7 - Final Frosting
Beat the softened cream cheese until smooth.
Then whisking continuously add the cream, mix that through Finally sugar, Rabdi essence and a bit of orange colour. Whip the cream until stiff peaks.
Transfer it to a piping bag with round nozzle and frost the cake with the same. To level the cake we will be using acetate paper, this is easily available at stationery stores, I have shown you the Modak Cake using the same technique before.
For this cake you have to start at the base and proceed upwards for a smooth finish. Watch the video tutorial for a visual understanding.
Once you are happy with the shape of the ladoo simply cover the entire cake with ladoo crumbs. The only thing to note is to not press the ladoo crumbs too much as you will lose that typical grainy and coarse exterior of the laddu.
To make it look authentic we would decorate it with parchment paper. Just fan the paper and make a circle of it around the ladoo.
Stick the ends of the parchment paper with some glue. Top the ladoo with edible silver foil and slivered nuts and voila an amazing cake is all ready to be devoured.
I highly recommend watching the video tutorial and also the step by step process shots in the blog post before attempting this recipe.
Always line the base of the cake pan with parchment paper so that the cake does not stick to the pan once baked.
The right way to avoid over mixing of the cake batter is by adding the dry ingredients in two batches. Add the second batch when the first batch is not completely mixed. This is explained even better in our ebook. Click here to download for free.
Cornflour can be substituted in place of custard powder in the recipe.
Similarly in place of rabdi essence you can use rasmalai, kulfi, badam, pista or kesar essence. IF nothing is available simply add 1 tsp cardamom powder and saffron strands to the cake batter.
Once baked, do not allow the cake to sit in the cake pan for long as due to condensation the base of the cake will go soggy.
While making the sugar syrup, boiling it for longer will thicken the syrup and your cake wont absorb the syrup and will remain dry.
It is always advisable to taste the ingredients first. In this case taste the pineapple first and then adjust the addition of lemon juice to ensure it is perfectly sour before adding it to the milk mixture.
Over-beating the whipping cream will lead to curdling of it. So whip to the right stage.
Using a dowel will provide stability to the cake.
Do not press the ladoo crumbs way too much on top of the cake. Or else you will lose the coarse and grainy look of the ladoo.
This cake stays good in the fridge for upto 5 days.