This indeed sounds like an unusual name for an Indian sweet dish! This delicacy was created by Bhim Chandra Nag, a traditional Bengali confectioner, to honour Lady Canning, the Vicereine of India, during an upcountry visit. She liked it very much and it was named after her, but has finally come to be known as “Lady Kenny” or “ledikeni”.
Makes 15 Lady Kennys
For sugar syrup
2 cups/500g granulated sugar
3-4 whole green cardamoms, slightly crushed
7-8 saffron strands
For Lady Kenny
400g Paneer (Indian cottage cheese)
½ cup/100g fine semolina
1 teaspoon ghee
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
15 raisins, soaked in water for 2-3 hours and drained
Ghee or vegetable oil
3 tablespoons caster sugar (optional)
Make the sugar syrup
Place 2 cups/500g of the sugar, 2 cups/500ml water and cardamoms in a saucepan and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer gently for about 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the syrup is of one-string consistency. Remove any impurities that float on the surface of the syrup using a slotted spoon. Add the saffron, cover and keep the syrup warm.
Make the Lady Kenny
Combine the Paneer, semolina and 1 teaspoon ghee in a bowl and knead to make a smooth and firm dough, without adding any water. Sprinkle the sugar and knead lightly. Divide into 15 equal portions and shape into balls. Stuff a raisin into each ball and shape it again into a smooth ball.
Heat the ghee or oil for deep-frying. Working in batches, deep-fry the Paneer-balls over low heat until golden brown, turning them over frequently. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Immerse in the warm sugar syrup and let soak for 2 hours.