Kenasian Sweets-Traditional

Serves 6 sooji halva

What you need

For the 'Halva'


1 cup fine semolina [sooji]
1/2 cup melted butter
4 cardamom pods
1  1/2 cups water
3/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon thinly sliced or crushed almonds
1 tablespoon sultanas [dried, white grapes]
1 tablespoon thinly sliced dry coconut
1 tablespoon thinly sliced 'chawarey'[dried dates]
1 teaspoon thinly cut pistachio

For the topping:

1/4 teaspoon 'saffron' strands
2 silver 'warq' [edible, very thin, silver leaves] 

Sooji Halva

How to

Steps:


1.  Put the melted butter into a thick based pan on low heat.
2.  Remove the seeds from the cardamom pods and put them into the butter.
3. Stir for 30 seconds and add the semolina.
4.  Keep stirring for 10 minutes on low heat till the semolina turns golden and you can feel its roasty aroma.
5.  Add the water and stir well so that there are no clumps formed.
6.  Let it simmer for 5 minutes.
7.  Add the sugar and all the dry fruits and nuts.
8.  Keep stirring and let it simmer for another 5 minutes.
9.  You may stop the heat now but if you prefer it to be 'drier', you can leave it to simmer for 5 more minutes till the melted butter becomes visible.
10.  Remove from the heat and put it into a broad serving bowl.
11.  Sprinkle it with the saffron strands and gently place the silver 'warq' on the surface.
12.  Serve the 'Sooji Halva', warm, with 'pooris' or as a sweet dish with any meal.

Serves 6 besan halva

What you need
 
For the 'halva':

2/3 cup coarse semolina [moti sooji]
1/3 cup fine gram flour [besan]
1/2 cup melted butter
4 cardamom pods [elachi]
3/4 cup sugar
1 and 1/2 cup water
1 tablespoon cashew nuts, crushed
1 tablespoon almonds,crushed
1 tablespoon sultanas [dried white grapes]
1 teaspoon pistachios, crushed


For topping:

2 silver 'warq'[confectionary, edible silver leaves]

Besan Halva

How to
 
Steps:

1.  In a thick-based pan, put the butter on low heat.
2.  Remove the seeds from the cardamom pods and put them into the butter.
3. Stir for 30 seconds and add the 'besan' and the 'sooji'.
4.  Mix and let it become golden, stirring constantly so that it does not get burnt.
5.  Add the water while stirring to avoid clumping. Let it simmer for 5 minutes.
6.  Add the sugar and all the dry fruit and nuts.
7.  Let it cook for another 10 minutes. You may stop the heat now if you like it very soft.  If you like it drier, then simmer for another 5 minutes till you can see the butter separating.
8. Remove from the heat and scoop it out into a shallow, broad bowl.
9.  Gently put the silver 'warq' on the surface.
10. Serve the warm 'Besan Halva' with 'pooris' or on its own as a sweet dish.

Note:

You may serve the 'Besan Halva' in small, fancy paper cups especially for a children's party.

Serves 6 chunky gajar halva

What you need

For the 'halva':


1 kilogram fresh carrots, peeled and sliced
1 cup water
1 cup sugar
1 cup melted butter
6 cardamom pods
1 cup dried milk powder [whole/skimmed]
2 tablespoons, almonds, sliced
1 tablespoon sultanas
1 tablespoon, pistachios,sliced

For topping:

2 silver 'warq' [edible silver leaves]

Chunky Gajar Halva

How to
 
Steps:

1.  Put the water and carrots in a pan with a lid. 
2.  Bring to the boil and then lower the heat and let them simmer till the slices are tender and the water is almost finished. 
[You may use the pressure cooker to save time - cook on high heat and pressure for 5 minutes.]
3. Coarsely crush the cardamom pods and put the seeds into the cooked carrots.
4.  Add the butter and the sugar.
5. Keep cooking on low heat, stirring occasionally and crushing the carrot slices with the spoon.
6.  When all the liquid has dried and the carrots start turning golden brown, stop the heat.
7.  Add half the nuts and all the dried milk powder. Cover and leave for ten minutes.
8.  Remove the cover. Stir gently and spoon out the halva into a shallow serving bowl.
9.  Sprinkle with the remaining nuts and put a 'warq' onto the surface.
10. Serve the tantalizing "Chunky Gajar Halva" as a dessert after any meal.  

Serves 6 muhogo halva

What you need
 
For the Halva:

2 cups fine 'muhogo' [cassava] flour
1 and 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup melted butter
1 teaspoon coarsely crushed 'elachi' [cardamom] seeds
3 cups water

To garnish:

1 tablespoon crushed/ finely cut almonds
1 tablespoon cut cashew nuts
1 tablespoon sultanas
1 teaspoon cut pistachio

Muhogo Halva

How to
 
Steps:

1.  In a thick based pan, put the butter and keep on low heat. Add the crushed 'elachi' seeds.
2.  Add the muhogo flour and let it fry, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon.
3.  After 10 to 15 minutes you will get the aroma of the roasting flour. Do NOT let it become brown. Add the water.
4. Keep stirring so that no lumps are formed and let it cook on low heat for another 10 minutes.
5.  Add the sugar and half the cut nuts and the sultanas.
6.  Let it cook till the liquid evaporates and the 'halva' starts 'leaving' the sides of the pan.
7. Stop the heat and spoon it out onto a shallow bowl/ plate.
8.  Sprinkle the left over nuts and sultanas over the top.
9.  Serve this unusual, tasty 'M uhogo Halva' as a dessert after any meal.

Serves 20 pieces besan mithai

What you need
 
For the mixture:

2 cups 'besan' [fine gram flour]
3/4 cup fresh cooking oil
1/2 teaspoon crushed 'elachi' [cardamom] seeds
1/2 cup dry powdered milk

For the syrup:
1 and 1/2 cup castor sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup fresh milk

For preparing the steel tray:
1 teaspoon margarine
pastry cutter/ knife

For decorating:
3 'warqs' [fine, edible silver leaves]

Besan di Mithai

How to
 
Steps:

1.  In a thick bases pan, put the oil on low heat.
2.  Add the 'besan' and let it fry, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon, for about 15 minutes till it becomes very light brown in colour. You will be able to get the aroma of the frying 'besan'.
3.  Remove from the heat and leave it aside.
4.  In a small pan, put the milk, sugar, salt and the 'elachi'. Warm on low heat for about 5 minutes till the sugar is completely dissolved. Stop the heat.
5. Pour this syrup over the fried 'besan'. Add the milk powder and with the wooden spoon. stir thoroughly till you have a uniform mixture that leaves the sides of the pan.
6.  Smear the steel tray with the margarine.
7.  Spread the warm mixture all over the tray and flatten with the wooden spoon so that you have a uniform layer about 1/2 cm thick.
8.  Put the 'warqs' over the surface of the layer.
9.  Allow to cool for 10 minutes.
10.  With a knife cut into squares or using a pastry cutter make different shapes of the 'mithai'.
11.  When completely cold, remove carefully from the tray and you may store the pieces in an air-tight container.
12.  Serve the "Besan di Mithai" with tea, coffee, milk-shake or juice at any time of the day! 

Serves 20 pieces badaam barfii

What you need
 
For the mixture:
2 cups fine gram flour [besan]
3/4 cup fresh cooking oil

1/2 cup crushed almonds
1/4 cup crushed cashew nuts
1/4 cup crushed pistachio
 
1/2 cup dried milk powder
 
For the syrup:
1/2 cup fresh milk
1 and 1/2 cup castor sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon crushed 'elachi' seeds [cardamom]

For Garnishing:
10 whole almonds, blanched, peeled and split into halves.

For preparing steel tray:
1 teaspoon margarine

Pastry cutter/ knife

Badaam Barfii

How to
 
Steps:  

1.  In a thick based pan, put the oil on low heat.
2.  Add the 'besan' and let it fry, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon for  15 to 20 minutes till it becomes light brown in colour and you can feel its aroma.
3. Remove from the heat and leave it aside.
4.  In a small pan, put the fresh milk, sugar, salt and the 'elachi' seeds.
5.  Over low heat let it simmer for 5 minutes till all the sugar has dissolved.
6.  Carefully pour this syrup over the ready 'besan'.
7.  Add the crushed nuts and the dry milk powder.
8.  Quickly mix everything thoroughly using the wooden spoon till you have a uniform mass that starts leaving the sides of the pan.
9.  Smear the steel tray with the margarine.
10.  Pour the mixture over the tray and flatten with the spoon so that you have a uniform layer about 1/2 cm thick.
11.  With a knife or a pastry cutter, make rhombus or any other shapes of the barfi.
12.  Take one half of the slit whole almond and gently poke it onto the middle of each piece of barfi.
13.  Allow to cool completely.
14.  Carefully remove from the tray and you may stor the pieces in an air-tight container.
15.  Serve the nutritious and tasty 'Badaam Barfii' with tea, coffee, juice or milk-shake.  

Serves 16 pieces coconut barfi

What you need
 
For the mixture:
2 cups desiccated, unsweetened coconut powder
1 cup dried milk [skimmed/full cream]

For the Syrup:
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon coarsely crushed 'elachi' [cardamom] seeds
1 pinch dark pink food colour

For setting:
a steel tray
1 teaspoon margarine
2 'warqs' [edible silver leaves]

Coconut Barfi

How to
 
Steps:
1.  In a medium sized pan, put the water on high heat.
2.  Add the sugar, 'elach' and the food colour.
3.  Let it boil for 2 to 3 minutes so that the sugar dissolves completely.
4.  Remove from the heat.
5.  Add the coconut powder and the dried milk. Mix thoroughly so that you have a uniform mass.
6.  Prepare the steel tray by smearing it with the margarine.
7.  Spoon out the mixture onto the tray, spread it and flatten it so that you have a layer about 3 cm high.
8.  Carefully put the 'warqs' on the surface.
9.  With a knife mark and cut into square or rhombus shapes.
10.  Let it cool for 10 to 15 minutes.
11.  With the help of a spatula, remove the pieces nd place on a serving plate.
12.  Serve the delightful 'Coconut Barfi' as a dessert or with tea, coffee, milk-shake or juice. 

Serves 30 pieces luddoos

What you need
 
For the mixture:
2 cups 'besan' [fine gram flour]
3/4 cup fresh cooking oil
1/2 teaspoon coarsely crushed 'elachi' [cardamom] seeds

For the syrup:
1/3 cup water
1 and 1/2 cup castor sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup desiccated, unsweetened coconut powder

For the garnishing:
2 or 3 'warqs' [edible silver leaves]
1 teaspoon desiccated coconut powder  

Luddoos

How to
 
Steps:
1.  Inop  a thick based pan, put the oil on low heat.
2.  Add the 'besan' and the 'elachi' powder.
3.  Let this 'fry' for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon.
4.  When you feel the aroma of roasted besan and the mixture has developed a uniform golden colour, remove from the heat and keep it aside.
5.  In a small pan, put the water on low heat.
6.  Add the sugar and let it simmer for 5 minutes so that it dissolves completely. 
7.  Stop the heat and add the coconut powder.  Mix thoroughly.
8.  Pour this mixture over the 'besan' that you had put aside.
9.  Quickly mix with a wooden spoon so that you have a uniform mass.  Allow to cool for 15 minutes so that you can handle it comfortably and not scald your palms!
10.  Divide the mixture into 30 parts.
11.  Wet your hands slightly and using your palms roll each part into a round shape.
12.  Cover some of them with the 'warq' and sprinkle the dry coconut over the others.
13.  Place them on a serving dish and let them 'set' for 1 to 2 hours.
14.  Serve the irresistible 'Luddoos' as a dessert after meals or with tea, coffee, milk-shake or juice.

Serves 20 pieces white barfii

What you need
 
For the mixture:
1 cup castor sugar
1/2 cup fresh milk
1 teaspoon coarsely crushed 'elachi' [cardamom]seeds
4 cups dry powdered milk [full cream/skimmed]

For setting:
a steel tray 
1 teaspoon margarine
knife or pastry cutter
2 or 3 'warqs' [edible silver leaves]

White Barfii

How to
 
Steps:
1.  In a pan, put the fresh milk on low heat.
2.  Add the sugar and the 'elachi' powder. Let it simmer for 5 minutes stirring occasionally so that the sugar dissolves completely.
3.  Remove from the heat.
4.  Sift the dry powdered milk and add it to the syrup, stirring it continuously so that no lumps are formed.
5.  Prepare the steel tray by smearing the margarine over its surface.
6.  Spoon out the mixture from the pan and spread it over the tray to form a uniform layer about 3 cm thick.
7.  Put the 'warqs' on top of the layer.
8.  Allow to cool for 15 minutes.
9.  With a knife or pastry cutter, mark and cut into square or diamond shaped pieces. Let them cool completely for 30 to 40 minutes.
10.  With the help of a spatula, carefully lift the pieces from the tray and put them on a plate. 
11.  You may serve the 'White Barfii' as a dessert after meals or with tea, coffee, milk-shake or juice.

Serves 6 sookhi sevayian

What you need
 
150 gm roasted [browned], thin vermicelli
3 tablespoons melted butter
1 teaspoon coarsely crushed 'elachi' [cardamom] seeds
1 cup water
3 tablespoons sugar

For garnishing:
1 tablespoon sliced or crushed almonds
1 tablespoon sultanas
1 tablespoon dry coconut slices
1 tablespoon sliced pistachio

Sookhi Sevayian

How to
 
Steps:
1.  In a thick based pan, put the butter on medium heat.
2.  Add the 'elachi' and the browned vermicelli. Stir for 1 minute. Lower the heat.
3.  Add the water, let it cook for 2- 3 minutes, stirring occasionally so that the vermicelli  does not clump together.
4.  Add the sugar and allow to cook till most of the liquid evaporates and the vermicelli remains moist.
5.  Stop the heat.  Add the crushed/ cut nuts saving a little for later. Cover and leave for 5 minutes.
6.  Spoon out into a serving bowl/ dish.
7.  Sprinkle the remaining nuts over the top.
8.  Serve the warm 'Sookhi Sevayian' as a dessert after meals or as part of your breakfast.

Serves 6 sevayian kheer

What you need
 
For the kheer:
150 gm thin, browned vermicelli
1 tablespoon melted butter
1 teaspoon coarsely crushed 'elachi' [cardamom] seeds
1 litre fresh milk
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup dry milk powder

For garnishing:
1 tablespoon thinly sliced, soaked 'chavarey'[dried dates]
1 tablespoon sultanas
1 tablespoon sliced almonds
1 tablespoon halved cashew nuts
1 teaspoon cut pistachio 
1 'warq' [edible silver leaf]

Sevayian Kheer [Sheer Khorma]

How to
 
Steps:

1.  In a thick based pan, put the butter on medium heat.
2.  Add the 'elachi'. Stir for a few seconds.
3.  Add the already browned vermicelli. Stir and add 3/4 of the fresh milk, keeping the rest aside.
4.  Bring to the boil and let cook for 10 to 15 minutes till the vermicelli is limp.
5.  Add the sugar and let simmer for another 10 minutes.
6.  In a separate pan warm the left over fresh milk and mix it with the dry milk powder.
7.  Pour this mixture into the vermicelli and let it cook for another 5 minutes till you have a slightly thick but runny fluid.
8.  Stop the heat. Add the dry fruit,saving a little for garnishing later.
9.  Cover and leave for 5 minutes.
10.  Spoon out into a large  bowl or several small bowls.
11.  Sprinkle the rest of the dry nuts over the top.  Put a 'warq' also if you want.
12.  Serve the 'Vermicelli Kheer' [Sheer Khorma] warm or chilled as a dessert after meals or as part of the breakfast.

Serves 6 lapsi

What you need

For the mixture:

1 cup 'lapsi' [coarsely ground whole wheat grains]
1/2 cup melted butter
1 teaspoon crushed 'elachi' [cardamom] seeds
3 sticks of cinnamon [2 cm each]
1 cup coconut milk
1 cup water
3/4 cup sugar

For garnishing:
1 tablespoon sliced almonds
1 tablespoon cut pistachio
1 tablespoon sultanas
1 tablespoon thinly sliced dry coconut pieces

Lapsi

How to
 
Steps:
1.  In a thick based pan, put the butter on low heat.
2.  Add the 'elachi' and cinnamon. Stir for a few seconds.
3.. Put in the 'lapsi' and let it roast for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally so that it gets a light brown colour and you can feel its aroma.
4.  Add the coconut milk and the water and let it cook on low heat for 15 to 20 minutes till the wheat grains are soft.
5.  Add the sugar and allow to simmer till most of the liquid evaporates and you have a moist, grainy mass.
6.  Stop the heating. Add the dry fruits, saving a little for garnishing the top later. Cover and leave it for 10 minutes.
7.  Spoon onto a shallow serving dish and sprinkle the remaining dry fruit over the surface.
8.  Serve this tantalising, extremely tasty 'Lapsi' as a dessert after any meal or brunch.

Serves 4 shakuur guundi

What you need
 
2 medium sized tubers of fresh Sweet Potato [shakuur guundi]
6 mugs of water

4 tablespoons of hot and sweet tamarind sauce
1 lemon

Shakuur Guundi

How to
 

Steps:

1. In a deep pan put the water and the tubers on high heat.
2.  Let them boil for about 30 minutes till the tubers are thoroughly cooked.
3.  Check with a fork - if the prongs enter the tubers easily they are ready.
4.  Remove the tubers from the water. Allow to cool for 5 minutes.
5.  Peel the tubers and cut the cylinders into circular slices.
6.  Put the slices on a flat serving dish.
7.  Garnish with a little tamarind sauce.
8.  Cut the lemon into wedges and place around the slices.
9.  Put the rest of the tamarind sauce in a small bowl.
10.  Serve the simple and nutritious 'Shakuur Guundi' with tea, coffee or juice.

Serves 6 shukkur guundi kheer

What you need
 
1 mug boiled, peeled and chopped 'shukkur guundi' [sweet potato]
2 mugs fresh milk
1/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon coarsely crushed 'elachi' [cardamom] seeds

For the garnishing:
1 tablespoon cut/ crushed almonds
1 teaspoon finely cut pistachio

Shukkur Guundi Kheer

How to
 
Steps:

1.  In a deep pan put the milk and bring to the boiling point.
2.  Add the boiled chunks of 'shukkar guundi', sugar and the 'elachi'.
3.  When it starts boiling, lower the heat and let it simmer for 15 to 20 minutes.
4.  Stir occasionally and check that the 'shukkar guundi' pieces have disintegrated.
5. Continue the cooking till you have a thick but flowing mass.
6.  Stop the heat and spoon out the pudding into a serving bowl.
7.  Sprinkle with the almonds and pistachio.
8.  Serve this exquisite 'Shukkur Guundi Kheer', chilled or warm, as a dessert after any meal.

Serves 40 pieces gulaab jaamun

What you need
  

For the Mixture:

3 cups dry, full-cream milk powder
1 cup fresh milk
1 cup self raising flour
2 tablespoons fine 'sooji' [semolina]
2 tablespoons melted butter
1 pinch bicarbonate of soda powder

For Frying:
1 litre of fresh cooking oil / 'ghee'

For the Syrup:
4 cups sugar
6 cups water
1 teaspoon coarsely crushed 'elachi' [cardamom] seeds
1 pinch orange food colour powder

For the Garnishing:
1 tablespoon finely cut almonds
2 or 3 'warqs' [fine, edible silver leaves]

Gulaab Jaamun

How to
 
 
Steps:

1.  In a large steel basin or tray, sift the milk powder, self raising flour and the semolina, using a large sieve.
2.  Add the bicarbonate powder and mix well.
3.  Add the butter and use your hand to mix so that there are no clumps.
4.  Add the fresh milk a little at a time and knead softly into a pliable dough.
5.  With moistened hands, divide into about 40 parts.
6.  Roll each part in your palms to form smooth round balls. You may use a slight dab of cooking oil on your palms to prevent the 'balls' from drying and cracking.
7.  Put the cooking oil / ghee in a deep frying pan and keep it on low heat.
8.  Carefully put one 'ball' at a time into the warm oil, stirring continuously.  You can fry 6 to 8 balls in a batch.
9.  When the 'balls' acquire a golden brown colour all over, remove them onto a plate and keep aside.
10.  Continue with Steps 8 and 9 till all the 'balls' have been fried.
11.  In a separate, large cooking pan, put the water to boil.
12. Add the sugar, food colour and the 'elachi'.
13.  Let this boil for 15 to 20 minutes till the syrup becomes a bit sticky to the touch.
14.  Make the heat as low as possible.
15.  With a new tooth pick or a thin skewer, poke a hole in each of the fried 'balls' and place them carefully in the syrup.
16.  Check that all the 'balls' are immersed in the syrup and leave for about 10 minutes.
17.  Remove from the heat, cover and leave to stand for 1 to 2 hours so that the 'balls' soak up the syrup and become soft.
18.  Use a spoon to remove the 'balls' with the syrup onto a shallow serving dish or bowl. 
19.  Sprinkle them with the almond slices and put the 'warqs' on top.
20.  Serve the luke-warm, tantalising 'Gulaab Jaamun' as a dessert after any meal or with tea, coffee or juice.

Serves 6 amijis kheer

What you need
 
For the pudding:
3 and 1/2 litres of fresh milk
1/2 cup broken/ full white rice, soaked
1 teaspoon coarsely crushed 'elachi' [cardamom] seeds
1 cup dry milk powder
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoons sliced almonds
1 tablespoon sultanas
1 tablespoon sliced pistachio
1 tablespoon finely sliced soaked 'chevarey'[dried dates]
2 drops of 'kewra' [fruity food essence]

For the Garnishing:
A little of the dry fruit and nuts from the above list
1 teaspoon of orange food colour liquid
2 'warqs' [edible silver leaves]

Traditional Amiji's Kheer

How to
 
Steps: 

1.  In a large,thick based cooking pan, put 3 litres of the fresh milk to boil.  Keep the rest of the milk aside.
2.  Add the soaked and drained rice to the milk.
3.  When it comes to the boiling point, lower the heat and let it simmer for 3 to 4 hours.
4. Stir occasionally and see that it does not get burnt at the bottom.
5. When the liquid has reduced to half its original volume, add the sugar, 'elachi' and the butter.
6.  In a separate bowl sift the dry milk powder and add the left over milk from Step 1. Mix thoroughly and put the mixture into the rest of the 'pudding'.
7.  Continue the simmering and stirring till the grains of rice cannot be seen separately and you have a slightly thick but flowing mass.
8.  Put aside a little of the dry fruits and nuts for the garnishing.  Add the rest into the 'pudding'.
9.  Stop heating. Add the drops of 'kewra'. Cover the 'pudding' and leave it for about 30 minutes.
10.  Spoon out into a large serving bowl or several small bowls.
11.  Sprinkle the left over dry fruit and nuts from Step 8 on the top of the 'pudding'.
12.  Using you index finger put a generous dot of the orange food colour in the middle of the bowl.
13.  Put a 'warq' on top of the surface.
14.  Serve this heavenly 'Traditional Amiji's Kheer' chilled or warm, as a dessert after any meal. 

Serves 6 gajrela

What you need
 
For the Pudding:

3 and 1/2 litres fresh milk
1/2 cup white rice [broken/whole], soaked
1 teaspoon coarsely crushed 'elachi' seeds [cardamom]
1 tablespoon butter
1 cup finely grated fresh carrot
1 cup sugar
1 cup dry powdered milk
1/4 teaspoon 'kewra' [special fruit essence]

For Garnishing:

1 tablespoon sliced almonds
1 teaspoon finely cut pistachio
2 'warqs' [edible silver leaves]

Gajrela

How to
 
Steps:

1.  In a large, thick-based pan, put 3 litres of the fresh milk and bring it to the boil.
2.  Add the drained, soaked rice and the 'elachi'.
3.  Lower the heat and let the mixture simmer for 3 to 4 hours, stirring occasionally to check that it does not get burnt at the bottom.
4.  Add the grated carrots, the sugar and the butter. Let it simmer for another 15 minutes.
5.  In a small bowl put the rest of the fresh milk [1/2 litre] and add the dry milk  powder to it. Mix well so that there are no clumps.
6.  Add this to the pudding and continue the simmering for 10 -15 minutes.
7.  Check that the rice grained are completely disintegrated and you have a thick but flowing mixture.
8, Stop the heat. Add the cut nuts, saving a little for later.
9. Add the 'kewra'. Cover and leave aside for 30 minutes.
10. When cooled down, spoon into a large serving bowl or several small  bowls.
11.  Sprinkle the left over nuts and put the 'warq' on the top of the surface.
12.  Serve this 'out-of-the-world' "Gajrela" as a dessert after any meal.

Serves 6 phirnee

What you need
 
For the pudding:
1 cup finely ground white rice,sieved
2 litres fresh milk
1 cup sugar
1/2 dried milk powder mixed with 1/2 cup fresh milk
1 tablespoon butter
1 teaspoon 'elachi' [cardamom] powder

For the Garnishing:
1 tablespoon finely cut almonds
1 tablespoon finely sliced pistachio
1 tablespoon sultanas
1 - 2 drops 'kewra' essence
1/2 teaspoon saffron strands
2 'wurqs' [edible, fine silver leaves]

Phirnee

How to
 
Steps:
1.  In a large sauce-pan, put the fresh milk and bring it to the boil.
2.  Add the rice powder and let it simmer on low heat for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
3.  Remove from the heat and sieve it into another sauce-pan so that there are no lumps in it.
4.  Add the butter, elachi powder, sugar, the dried milk paste and half the almonds, pistachio and sultanas.
5.  Put the pan back on low heat and let it simmer for another 30 minutes, stirring now and then.
6.  Check that the consistency is soft and flowing, not hard or too liquid.
7.  Stop the heat and and add the 'kewra' drops. Mix and carefully pour into a large serving bowl.
8.  Sprinkle the saffron strands, the remaining nuts and sultanas. Carefully put the 'wuraqs' on the surface of he pudding. Allow to cool down completely.
9.  Serve the chilled 'Phirni' as a dessert with any meal, especially with 'aloo chanay' and 'puris'.

Serves 6 zarda

What you need

For the rice:

1 cup good quality 'pishori' rice, cleaned and soaked for 30 minutes.
6 cups water
1/4 teaspoon orange food colour
1 teaspoon  fresh lemon juice

For the syrup:
1/2 cup melted butter
1 teaspoon coarsely crushed 'elachi' [cardamom]
1/4 cup water
1 cup sugar

For the garnishing:
1 tablespoon sultanas
1 tablespoon sliced almonds
1 tablespoon siced pistachio
1 tablespoon red/ green sliced glaced cherries
1 'warq' [edible silver leaf]

Zarda

How to
 
Steps:

1.  In a large pan, put the 6 cups of water to boil.
2.  Add the food colour,the lemon juice and the drained, soaked rice. 
3.  Stir and let this boil for about ten minutes till the rice is almost cooked. [Do not over cook]
4.  Immediately drain off the water using a colander and leave the rice aside.
5.  To make the syrup, take a large pan that has a lid and put the butter in it on medium heat.
6.  Add the 'elachi'. Stir for a few seconds.
7.  Add the sugar and the 1/4 cup water. Let it cook for 5 minutes.
8.  When the syrup starts frothing, tip the boiled rice from the colander into the pan.
9.  Add the cut nuts and fruit, saving a little for later.
10. Stir gently with a fork. Cover the rice with the lid and leave it on very low heat for about 10 minutes.
11. Put off the heat.  Spoon out carefully into a serving dish.
12.  Sprinkle the top with the left over fruits and nuts.
13.  Put a 'warq' on the middle of the surface.
14.  Serve this bright and tasty "Zarda" as a dessert after any meal, especially when you have cooked 'Mutton Pilau' - this is the traditional combination!

Serves 6 gur puppa

What you need
 
For the rice:

1 mug long, good quality 'pishori' rice, cleaned and soaked for 30 minutes.
1 mug crushed 'gur' [jaggery]
2 and 1/2 mugs water
1/2 mug melted butter
1 teaspoon coarsely crushed 'elachi' [cardamom] seeds
1 teaspoon 'saunf' [fennel] seeds

For garnishing:

1/2 cup almond, blanched, skinned and halved
2 'warqs' [edible silver leaves]

Gur Puppa

How to
 
Steps:
1.  In a pan put the water on high heat and let it boil.
2.  Add the 'gur' [jaggery], stir and let it dissolve for 5 minutes.
3. Stop the heat and sieve the sweet liquid into a large bowl. This is to ensure that no debris remains in the syrup.
4.  In a large pan that has a lid, put the butter and keep on medium heat.
5.  Add the 'elach' and the 'fennel' seeds. Stir for a minute.
6.  Carefully add the sieved 'gur' solution and let it boil.
7.  Add the drained, soaked rice.  Stir gently and cover with the lid.
8.  Let it boil on high heat for 10 minutes.
9.  Lower the heat and cook for another 5 minutes till you can see  small 'pits' being formed in the rice that should be cooked completely by now.
10.  Add the almond halves, stir gently with a fork, cover and leave it on very low heat ['dum'] for another 10 minutes.
11.  Stop the heat. Leave it aside for 5 minutes.
12.  Spoon out carefully onto a serving dish.
13. Put the 'warqs' on the surface of the rice.
14.  Serve this unique 'Gur Puppa' as a dessert with fresh cream and lemon/mango pickles.

Serves 6 gajar muraba

What you need
 
10 to 12 small, thin, fresh carrots
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
1 teaspoon coarsely crushed 'elachi' [cardmom] seeds
 
2 'warqs' [edible,silver leaves]

Gajar Muraba

How to
 
Steps:

1.  Peel and wash the carrots.
2.  With a sharp knife, make a longitudinal slit starting from the top to 3/4 quarters down the carrot.
3.  Make another cut at right angles to the first so that you have made 4 'arms' intact at the base of the carrot.
4.  Repeat steps 2 and 3 for all the carrots.
5.  In a pan, put the prepared carrots with the sugar, 'elachi' and the water.
6.   Cover the pan and put on high heat to boil.
7.  Lower the heat and allow to simmer for about 45 minutes.
8.  Check that the carrots are cooked and the syrup is thick.
9.  Stop heating. Allow to cool for 10 minutes.
10.  Spoon out onto a shallow serving bowl and put the 'warqs' on top.
11.  Serve the energy boosting 'Gajar Muraba' for breakfast or as a dessert with other meals.
 
Note:  If you like, you may use the 'micro-wave' oven. Then instead of Steps 5,6 and 7, you must put the ingredients in a micro-wave proof glass dish with a cover and 'micro' it for 15 to 20 minutes. Proceed with Step 8 to 11.

Serves 4 apple muraba

What you need
 
3 medium sized green apples
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup water
2 pieces of cinnamon sticks [2 cm each]

Apple Muraba

How to
 
Steps:

1.  Peel, core and cut the apples into quarters.
2.  In a pan, put the water, sugar and the cinnamon sticks on high heat.
3.  Tip in the apple pieces and bring to the boil.
4.  Lower the heat , cover the pan and let it simmer for 15 to 20 minutes.
5.  Check that the apples are cooked and the syrup is slightly thick.
6.  Stop heating and allow to stand for 10 minutes.
7.  Spoon out into a serving bowl.
8.  Serve the 'apple muraba' for breakfast or as a dessert after meals.

Note:
If you want to use the micro-wave oven, then, instead of Steps 2, 3 and 4, you can put all the ingredients in a micro - proof dish with a cover. Cook in the 'micro' at 'high' intensity for 5 to 10 minutes. Proceed with Steps 5 to 8 as above.

Serves 6 mango muraba

What you need
 
For Micro-wave Oven:

2 large, half-ripe, fresh mangoes
1 cup sugar
2 sticks cinnamon [2 cm each]
2 green 'elachi' [cardamom] pods
2 cloves

For normal cooking:

All the above ingredients and
1/2 cup water

Mango Muraba

How to
 
Steps:

1.  If you are using the micro-wave oven then take a micro-proof bowl with a loose lid.
2.  Peel the mangoes and cut the flesh into large chunks.
3.  Put the sugar, 'elachi', cloves,cinnamon and the mango pieces into the bowl.
4. Cover and 'micro' it at 'high' intensity for 15 minutes.
5.  Leave to 'stand' for at least 10 minutes. 
6.  Check that the mangoes are soft and the syrup is 'runny'.
7.  Spoon out into a serving bowl. Allow to cool completely.
8.  Serve the 'Mango Muraba' as a dessert after  meals or as part of break-fast.


Note:
If you are using gas or electricity to cook, then you must use a large cooking pan. Put all the ingredients  and the water in it. Bring it to boil, then lower the heat and let it simmer for 30 to 40 minutes.
Theb, follow the Steps 5 to 8 as above.

Serves 6 custard trifle

What you need
 
6 slices of plain/ fruit cake, 2 cm thick
1 cup any fresh fruit juice 
2 cups small junks of mixed fruit [mango, banana, apple, paw-paw, peach or any others of your choice]
2 cups ready vanilla custard, medium thickness
1 cup ready  fruit jelly [red/ orange]
1 cup whipped, fresh cream [optional]

For decoration:
6 strawberries, halved
12 grapes [red/green], halved

Custard Trifle

How to
 
Steps:
1.  First see that you have all the ingredients ready -prepare the custard, set the jelly and cut the fruit.
2.  Take a large shallow serving bowl and place the cake slices on the base.
3.  Sprinkle the fruit juice all over the cake.
4.  Put the chunks of fruit over the cake.
5.  Spread the cooled custard all over the surface of the fruit.
6.  Spoon out the set jelly and put thin layers of it over the middle of the bowl.
7.  Decorate the edges of the pudding with alternate pieces of grape and strawberry.
8.  Put dollops of whipped/ fresh cream around the surface to add to the decor of the pudding. [optional]
9.  Serve the refreshing 'Custard Trifle', chilled, as a dessert after any meal.

Serves 4 avocado custard

What you need
 
2 large, ripe avocados
2 cups fresh milk
3 tablespoons sugar

Avocado Custard

How to
 
Steps:
1.  Peel and cut the flesh of the avocado into chunks.
2.  In the jug of the electric/ manual mixer, put the milk and the sugar.
3.  Tip in the avocado pieces.
4.  Cover with the lid and blend for 1 minute so that you have a thick, smooth mass without any lumps.
5.  Spoon out into a serving bowl. Cover with 'cling-film' and let it chill in the fridge.
6.  Serve the exotic 'Avocado Custard' as a dessert after any meal.

Serves 20 pieces almond dates

What you need
 
20 fresh, brown dates
20 almonds
1/2 cup slightly roasted, white 'till' [sesame] seeds

Almond Dates

How to
 
Steps:

1. Take one date at a time. Carefully make a slit about 2 cm long on one side.
2.  Remove the hard stone and any part of the stalk attached.
3.  Wipe the almonds with a clean, moist cloth.
4.  Place the 'till' seeds on a flat plate.
5.  In each slit date, squeeze the almond into the cavity  and press the flesh of the date firmly to cover it completely.
6.  Place it on the 'till' seeds.
7. Repeat steps 5 and 6 so that all the dates have been done.
8.  Roll them slowly in the 'till' seeds so that they are completely covered.
9.  Place them on a serving dish and sprinkle with any 'till' seeds remaining.
10.  Serve the unusual "Almond-Dates" as a sweet and healthy snack or as part of break-fast.  

Serves 3.5 kg saunf

What you need
 
Note:
'Saunf' is usually made in a large quantity to be served during Asian wedding ceremonies, parties or dinners.  It has a typical refreshing taste and is eaten in small pinches!

Ingredients:

1 kg dry, green 'saunf' [fennel] seeds
1 cup water
3 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon 'haldi' [tumeric] powder

1 kg dry 'thania daana'
1/2 kg small 'mishri' [large sugar crystals]
1/2 kg almonds, thinly sliced
1/2 kg sweet, finely cut 'supari' [beetal nut]
200 gm sweet coated, coloured 'saunf' [fennel] seeds

Saunf

How to
 
Steps:
1.  Sift the green 'saunf' and clean it by removing any stalks or stones.
2.  In a large shallow pan, put the water, salt and the 'haldi' powder.
3. Put on medium heat and add the 'saunf' seeds.
4. Stir carefully and let it roast on low heat.
5.  When all the water has evaporated and the 'saunf' is just slightly golden, stop the heat and leave it aside to cool thoroughly.
6.  In a large basin, put all the other ingredients.
7.  Add the cooled 'fennel' and stir with a fork to mix well.
8.  You may store it in an air-tight container.
9.  Serve the traditional 'Saunf' in small bowls after any meal. 

Serves 20 maahanay

What you need

For the dough:

4 cups self raising 'maida' [white flour]
1 cup fresh milk
3/4 cup melted margarine/ butter

For Frying:
1 litre fresh cooking oil

For the Coating:
2 cups sugar
1/2 cup water
1 teaspoon coarsely crushed 'elachi' [cardamom] seeds

'Maa'hanay

How to
 
Steps:
1.  In a large basin, put the flour and the melted butter.
2.  Mix and rub till crumbly.
3.  Add the milk a little at a time and with your hand knead into a pliable dough.
4.  Cover with a cotton cloth and leave for 20 to 30 minutes.
5.  Make a small ball of some the dough and with your hands, roll it into a cylinder about 1.5 cm diameter.
6.  Place it on a cutting board and using a knife, cut into pieces 1.5 cm long so that you now have small cubes of the dough. Keep them on a tray and see that they don't stick to each other.
7.  Repeat Steps 5 and 6 till you finish the dough. 
8.  Put the cooking oil in a large deep frying pan and heat to medium intensity.
9.  Carefully put 10 to 12 cubes of the dough into the oil.
10. Let them fry, while stirring gently, till they attain a golden brown colour all over.
11.  Remove the fried cubes onto absorbent paper so that excess oil gets drained off.
12.  Repeat steps 8 to 11 till all the dough cubes have been fried.  Place them in a large steel tray or basin.
13.  In a cooking pan, put the sugar, water and the 'elachi' powder.
14.  Place on medium heat and stir.  Let it boil for 5 minutes.
15.  Check that the sugar has dissolved and the syrup is slightly sticky. Remove from the heat.
16.  Gently pour this syrup all over the fried cubes.
17.  Mix carefully with a fork so that all the cubes get covered with the syrup.
18.  Let them dry for 30 to 40 minutes till the coating appears white.
19. When completely cooled, they can be stored in an air-tight container.
20.  These quaint and sweet 'Maa-hanay' can be served with tea, coffee, milk-shake or juice at any time of the day.

Serves 3 kg punjeeri

What you need
For the mixture:

1 kg fine semolina ['sooji']

1 kg fine, white sugar
500 gm 'ghee' [clarified butter]

500 gm almonds
250 gm  pistacio
250 gm 'char magaz' [edible seed kernals of melons]
100 gm green 'elachi' [cardamom] pods

250 gm 'mahaaney' [popped cereal]
1 tablespoon 'kamar-kaas' [black herb]
1/4 tablespoon 'gondh' [edible tree gum]

For Frying:
250 gm 'ghee'

Note:
Some of the ingredients seem rare but you can get them at any Asian/ Indian grocery store.

Mum's Punjeeri

How to
 
Steps:
1.  In a large, thick based cooking pan, put 500 gm of 'ghee' on medium heat.
2.  Tip in the semolina.  Lower the heat and keep stirring now and then so that it gets fried to a golden colour.
3.  Remove from the heat, cover it and leave it aside.
4.  In a frying pan, put 250 gm of ghee on low heat.
5.  Put in a little of the 'mahaaney' at a time and fry for a a minute till crisp.
6.  Remove onto a plate and let them cool for 5 minutes.
7.  Using a mortar and pestle or a grinder, crush them to a grainy powder.
8.  When all the 'mahaaney' are crushed, put them into the fried semolina.
9.  Using the same 'ghee' in Step 4, fry the 'kamar kaas' for a minute. Remove, cool and grind to a powder. Put it  into the semolina.
10.  Similarly, fry the 'gondh', remove from the ghee, cool and grind it. Put it into the semolina.
11.  Coarsely crush the almonds, pistachio and the 'elachi' seeds. Add them to the semolina.
12.  Finally add the sugar to the semolina and mix all the ingredients well so that you have a uniform mixture.
13.  Allow to cool thoroughly and then store in an air-tight container.
14.  Serve the high energy giving, crunchy 'Mum's Punjeeri', cold or slightly warmed with tea, coffee or juice.

Note:
This 'Mum's Punjeeri' is traditionally made for women who have just had a baby as its special ingredients have healing powers, are strength giving and very good for the back, bones and teeth...... but any body else can also enjoy this exotic concoction!  

Serves 2 mugs kaarhah

What you need

4 mugs fresh, whole milk

1 tablespoon butter
4 'elachi' [cardamom] pods
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon crushed almonds
1 teaspoon crushed pistachios
1/4 teaspoon 'saffron' strands

Mum's 'Kaarhah'

How to
 
Steps:

1. In a deep pan, put the butter at very low heat.
2. Remove the seeds from the cardamom pods and crush them.
3. Add the cardamom to the melted butter and stir for 30 seconds.
4.  Pour in the milk, increase the heat and bring it to boil.
5.  Lower the heat and let the milk simmer for at least 30 minutes till its volume is halved.  Keep it partially covered with a lid.
6.  Save a pinch of the almonds and the pistachios for the topping.
7. Add the rest of the almonds, pistachios, the sugar and the 'saffron' strands. Stir the mixture.
8.  Let it simmer for 5 more minutes.
9.  Remove from the heat and pour it into small bowls or mugs.
10. Sprinkle with the remaining crushed almonds and pistachios on the surface of the drink.
11. Serve this highly energizing 'Kaarhah', hot, on its own or with a salty snack.

Note:  This delicious 'kaarha' is traditionally served to new mothers and guests who come to see the baby!

Serves 4 gurdh

What you need

1 mug crushed 'gurdh' [jaggery]

2 tablespoons butter
4 pods 'elachi' [cardamom] pods
1/2 teaspoon 'ajwain' seeds
1/4 teaspoon 'fennel' [saunf] seeds
1 tablespoon almonds. crushed
1 teaspoon pistachio, crushed
1 teaspoon 'char magaz' [dry melon seeds with hard cover removed]

Mum's 'Gurdh'

How to
 
Steps:

1.  In a pan, put the butter and let it melt on low heat.
2.  Remove the 'elachi' seeds from the pods and crush them.
3.  Put them into the butter and stir for a few seconds.
4.  Add the 'gurdh'
5.  Stir on low heat for 5 to 10 minutes, till the 'gurdh' softens.
6.  Add the ajwain, saunf, char magaz, almonds and pistachios.
7.  Stir gently so that everything is mixed up properly.
8.  Stop the heat and let the mixture cool.
9.  Serve this strength-giving 'Gurdh' with tea or milk.  

Note: The 'Gurdh' is traditionally recommended for new mothers but anybody can enjoy it!