How Well Do You Know Your Jalebis?

From imarti to jaleba, there’s so much to the spirally jalebi.

Annabelle D’Costa

Jalebis, the Indian cousin of a Persian dessert, has the privilege of being one of the most famous and recognisable desserts in India. Whether it is a festival, ceremony or even a party, there is always a place for jalebi on the menu. And just as diverse as our nation is, jalebi too has many variations. Every region in India has made the spiral dessert their own by tweaking or adding an ingredient.

Watch this video to make some karari jalebis at home:

How Well Do You Know Your Jalebis?

Jangiri or Imarti

Jalebi’s distant cousin, jangiri also known as imarti, amriti, emarti, omriti or jahangir are made with ground urad dal and are said to have originated from Northern India. Shaped like a flower, jangiri is considered to be a healthier alternative to jalebi and are more gooey and chewy.


Jalebi’s overweight cousin, jaleba typically weighs nothing less than 250 kilograms, and is in the northern part of the country, especially in the bylanes of Indore and even Varanasi. Not only is a jaleba five times the size of a jalebi, but is also allegedly much sweeter than the normal jalebi.

Paneer Jalebi or Channar Jilipi

Kolkata’s take on the jalebi results in what’s locally known as channar jilipi. Made with channa or fresh paneer aka cottage cheese, the jalebi is deep-fried and soaked in cardamom-flavoured sugar syrup. It is more decadent than a jalebi and tastes and looks similar with the same dark brown colour of that of a gulab jamun.

Khoya Jalebi

A specialty of Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh, khoya or mawa jalebi is made using a batter of khoya, thickened evaporated milk commonly used to make Indian desserts, and milk with a little maida, which acts as a binding agent. While this jalebi can be enjoyed on its own, it tastes even better when topped with cold milk or malai

There’s something irresistible about crispy yet juicy jalebi topped with a generous serving of rabdi . Served hot or cold, jalebis make for the perfect dessert to end our meals on a sweet note. If you want to get started with making jalebi at home, trust Gurdip Kohli Punj and her recipe to learning how to make the crispiest jalebis

Images: Shutterstock


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