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The traditional golden brown Mysore Pak laid on banana leaves

A delectable delight, the Mysore Pak is a lovely dessert, and like its name it hails from the erstwhile Kingdom of Mysore.

The story is told of Guru Sweets, a simple home-based confectionary that began in the King's kitchen. Kakasura Madappa, the founder, served under Krishna Raja Wadeyar IV, the then Maharaja of Mysore, who loved new delicacies. One day, he asked for something new, and Madappa presented him with a soft, yellow sweet, the consistency of a butter biscuit. The Maharaja loved this sweet so much that he named it Mysore Pak.

The original Mysore Pak was dry in the middle and had a more biscuit-like consistency. Image source: wikimedia commons

Mysore Pak is a simple blend of besan flour, ghee, and sugar. It is mixed slowly, in stages, over a low flame, and laid to set in a steel vessel. Depending on the amount of ghee in it, it is either silky soft, or slightly hard and dry in the middle. In both cases, it is a lovely golden colour. Across Karnataka, both types are sold based on individual preferences.

After the establishment of Guru Sweets, Shri Krishna Sweets in Mysore took over the job of making Mysore Pak famous in the state. Tourists know Shri Krishna Sweets for the quality of Mysore Pak that has remained consistent for years now. They are primarily responsible for the introduction of the smoother textured sweet into Kannada culture.

Mysore Pak being made at home is laid to set in steel plates and then cut out into squares Image source: wikimedia commons

It no longer makes sense to visit Mysore and not have a taste of the Mysore Pak as it is to visit Mysore and not visit the Palace. They are names that are almost synonymous with each other, since their origin stems from a similar line. Traditional Kannadigas include the Mysore Pak in all religious functions, festive occasions, and at special ceremonies. In Karnataka, the Mysore Pak is the 'King of Sweets.'

Keywords: Sweets, Maharaja of Mysore, Mysore Pak, Legendary origin, Tourist attraction, Karnataka



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