One of my friend had a baby recently and I was looking for a simple dessert to make for her.Kesari came to my mind,my mom makes it very well but I couldn’t reach her by phone,so I experimented on this one and came out very good.Heres a variation of kesari with rose syrup commonly used for falooda.
Rava/sooji/semolina 2 cup
Sugar 2 cup
Ghee 1/4 cup +2 tablespoons
pinch cardamom powder
20 half Cashew pieces
1/4 cup rose syrup
2 cup milk
1.Coat a sheet pan(or a flat plate with rim) with 1 tablespoons ghee to transfer the cooked mixture.
2.Heat 1 tablespoon ghee in a pan,roast the cashews and take them into a bowl and then roast the raisins and take them into a different bowl.
3.In the same pan add the remaining ghee and add the rava and fry in medium flame stirring constantly till the rava will start turning very light brown.Transfer the mixture to a plate and set aside.
4.Add 2 cups milk and 2 cups water to the pan and bring to boil,add the cardamom powder and stir.. On a medium flame,add the fried rava little by little to the boiling water and keep stirring simultaneously.Make sure lumps do not form and cook for 4 minutes.
5.Add the rose syrup,raisins and sugar and stir well. The mixture will now start to get a little watery due to the sugar,mix well and mash the lumps to get a uniform color.Keep stirring for about 5 minutes till the mixture starts to turn in one big lump and not sticking to the pan.
6.Transfer the mixture to the sheet pan that has been previously greased with ghee and spread the kesari in it and flatten it well.
7.After it completely cooled down cut the kesari into diamond shapes and press a cashew on each piece and serve.
If using food color instead of rose syrup,you can add it in the milk directly,rose syrup contains sugar which will stop the process of cooking the rava if added in the milk.
You can add more ghee to your preference.
This recipe yields a slightly less sweet kesari,you can add 1/2 cup extra sugar for a sweeter version.
Some people like the kesari in a lump served in a bowl rather than diamond shaped,you can cook the rava for a shorter period and remove it before it forms a single lump.
You can add cream for a richer kesari instead of milk.
If you have cookie cutters,you can use those to form your favorite shapes from the sheet of kesari you made.
There are plenty of other flavors you can use for the kesari,below are some samples if you want to try,(when using citrus fruits,don’t use milk as it can get curdled)
1.Coconut:add 1/2 cup of fine grated coconut and coconut extract to the milk(add 1 cup extra water)
2.Orange:add 1 tablespoon Orange zest and add 1/2 teaspoon of orange extract for an orange taste(there is a liquid called as orange blossom water you can use instead and add a squeeze of lemon juice)
3.Saffron can be added in the milk for natural coloring and is called as kesari bath.
4.Pineapple juice can be substituted instead of milk for pineapple kesari.