Heat milk in a nonstick pan or heavy bottom pan over medium flame. Let the milk come to a boil.
Once the milk comes to a boil, turn off the heat and add ½ cup of fresh water to the milk. This makes the curdling process faster.
Start adding vinegar little by little, and stir until the milk curdles completely. Alternatively, you can use lime juice or curd.
Line a cloth over a colander and drain the curdled milk. Rinse it with some fresh water to get rid of the vinegar taste.
Squeeze water tightly from the cloth and then let it hang for 15 to 20 minutes.
Preparing the Instant Mawa
Heat a nonstick pan or heavy bottom pan in low flame. Add milk and ghee followed by sugar and milk powder while stirring continuously to get a smooth mixture. Replace milk powder with grated khoya, if using store-bought khoya.
Keep stirring until the mixture completely leaves the sides of the pan and becomes a mass.
Instant mawa is ready. Turn off the flame, transfer the mawa to a plate and let it slightly cools down.
Making Malai Ladoo
First crumble the paneer. If you are using store-bought paneer, grate it.
Take crumbled paneer and cardamom powder in a blending jar and blend until smooth. You can also do this by hand, I prefer blending.
Now add the mawa and kewra essence and pulse 1 to 2 times. (If you are using store-bought paneer and mawa, you may need to add a little milk or condensed milk.)
Transfer the mixture to a bowl.
Apply some ghee on your palms, take small or medium portions and shape into ladoos.
You can garnish these ladoos with chopped pistachios, almonds, or cashews.
Serve malai ladoo straight away or refrigerate and serve them later. These ladoos stay good for 5 to 7 days in the refrigerator.