Its been days since I made a good desi meetha or Indian Sweet!! The festival season has begun in India and I have been wanting to begin my Festive Fayre series again!! And what better sweet than the one called Shahi Tukra | Shahi Tukre | Double ka Meetha or quite simply Royal Morsels in English.
Its a sweet that was particularly popular in Delhi around the time I was a kid and no marriage buffet was complete without Shahi Tukre covered with dry fruits and Warq. The name of this delicious sweet represents more its taste than the process involved in making it. In fact this is one of the easiest dessert that you can rustle up once you've got past the idea that you need to fry white bread in ghee!! Trust me the end product is amazing and this is why I have chosen to begin my 2011 Festive Fayre series with it.
6 slices of white or milk bread, crusts removed
4 tbsp ghee (clarified butter)
Oil, as needed for frying
1 can evaporated milk
1 cup full fat milk
1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk (or to taste)
1/2 cup mixed chopped nuts (cashews, pistachios, golden raisins)
1/2 tsp cardamom powder
1/2 tsp saffron strands
2/3 cup sugar
- Soak the saffron strands in a quarter cup of milk. Set aside.
- In a heavy bottomed, bring together remaining milk and evaporated milk. Bring to a boil and then simmer stirring constantly until it is reduces by about a third of the quantity and is beginning to thicken.
- Add condensed milk and the cardamom and saffron, let simmer on a low heat for another 10 minutes.
- Set the Rabri aside and chill in the refrigerator.
- In a separate saucepan, pour in the sugar with a quarter cup water. Bring to a boil and simmer till you get a thick syrup. Remove from heat, Set aside.
- Pour a tablespoon of ghee in a non stick pan, add the chopped mixed fruits and nuts. Fry until golden brown.
- Remove in a bowl using a slotted spoon.
- Cut the bread slices diagonally into triangles.
- Pour enough oil for shallow frying into the frying pan. Add a tablespoon of ghee. Heat on a medium low to low flame.
- Add four triangles of bread at a time to the pan and shallow fry till crisp and golden brown. Remove and allow excess oil to drain on a kitchen towel for 30 seconds each.
- Immerse into the prepared sugar syrup for just about a minute. The fried bread does not need to soften and must retain its crispness while retaining some sugar syrup.
- Repeat for remaining bread, replenishing oil and ghee in the proportions above for shallow frying.
- Arrange the soaked pieces on a plate. Sprinkle half the chopped fried fruits and nuts onto the slices.
- Set aside remaining nuts until dessert is ready to be served.
- Remove the Rabri from the refrigerator half an hour before you intend to serve the dessert.
- To serve, place a couple of pieces of the bread on plate. Pour some Rabri and sprinkle more chopped and fried fruits nuts. Dig in!!
Crispy, crunchy, cold, and sweet is the only way I can describe a first bite into a well prepared Shahi Tukra. This one's going to be a great hit for the festive season with family and friends!!
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