Celebrate Diwali With Gulab Jamun and Wine

Diwali — the traditional Indian “festival of lights” that celebrates the triumph of good over evil, will be celebrated this year on Monday (Oct. 24).

You can read more about the significance of the event and how it’s celebrated here.

One of the classic treats served during the festival of lights is gulab jamun, a fried-dough treat that’s popular in India, Nepal, the Maldives, Bangladesh and Myanmar. It’s the national dessert of Pakistan.

We’re not sure what it is about fried dough that makes it so sought-after, but there’s no denying the popularity of donuts in America, beignets in France and New Orleans, paczki in Poland, or fritters of various types just about anywhere.

Whatever the reason, fried dough is comfort food on steroids. And what you may not know is that there are three types of wine that drink beautifully with these gooey delights, creating the perfect pairing for a sweet brunch experience.

1. Semi-sweet or sweet Riesling.

The finest renditions come from Germany, but they can be expensive. Alternatively, look for renditions from Washington state or the Finger Lakes and Hudson River Valley regions of New York.

2. The Muscat family of wines.

And a big family it is. There are more than 200 grape varieties under the Muscat umbrella, some used for raisins and many used for wines. There are more still that are not official members of the family but closely related. Look for names like Muscat of Alexandria, Muscat Blanc, Muscat Frontignan and Muscat Canelli.

3. Asti Spumante.

Made from the Moscato grape, part of the Muscat family, this wine deserves its own spot on the list because of its sparkling personality. When the sparkling wine of Italy is paired with gulab jamun, it makes for a wonderful international dining experience.

So if you didn’t exhaust your allotment of daily calories with the fried dough, enjoying it with a glass of sweet wine surely will send you over the top.

But especially if you’ve been watching what you eat, haven’t you earned a little decadence?

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Posted in Food and Wine Pairings/Recipes
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