Kesari baath is a popular sweet dish of South India which is a staple sweet dish prepared as naivadyam in the temples of Karnataka and other auspicious ceremonies like Ganesha Chaturthi, Deepavali, Navarathri, Satyanarayana Pooja etc.
It is characterised by generous use of ghee which makes the dessert moist and glossy in texture. Kesari Baath is served with Uppittu or Khara Baath for breakfast.
There are many variations of Kesari Baath according to the use of the flavouring agent as Mango Kesari Baath or Pineapple Kesari Baath in which mango or pineapple pulp is used to give a distinct flavour to the halwa.
Kesari Baath is also known as Rawa Kesari in Tamil Nadu and Sooji ka Halwa or Suji ka Sheera in northern India where it is also prepared as a special sweet dish for religious occasions.
The method of preparation of Kesari Baath and Suji ka Halwa are almost the same with the use of basic ingredients like rawa or suji, ghee, cardamom powder, sugar and dry fruits. In some places water is replaced by milk and the kesar colour of the halwa is obtained by using artificial colour or original saffron.
However, you don’t always need an occasion to prepare Kesari Baath and can always pamper your taste buds with this delectable grub which is so easy to make with small ingredients.
Kesari Baath Recipe
Serving size: 4
Cooking time: 25 mins
Rawa/ Suji- 1 cup
Sugar- 1 cup
Ghee- 1 cup
Cardamoms- 2 pods (deseeded and powdered)
Turmeric/ food colour/ saffron (soaked in ½ cup warm milk) - 1 pinch
Dry fruits- ½ cup
Water/milk – 2 cups approx.
How to prepare
- Heat a pan and add 1 tsp. of ghee. Now, add the dry fruits and stir fry them till they turn golden. Make sure you stir them continuously in slow them to avoid burning. Remove them from pan and keep aside.
- Now, add 1 more tsp. of ghee and add the suji to it. Roast the suji till its aroma comes out. Remove it from flame and keep aside.
- Add 2 cups of water or milk to the pan with a pinch of turmeric or food colour and bring it to a boil. To that, slowly add the roasted semolina and stir continuously till it becomes thick and soft.
- Now, add the sugar slowly and keep folding the halwa so that the semolina does not stick to the bottom of the frying pan.
- Gradually add the rest of the ghee and the dry fruits and mix everything well. Spice it up with a dash of cardamom powder and give the mixture a final stir. Once the halwa leaves the sides of the pan, switch off the flame.
- Your Kesari Baath is ready to serve hot with uppittu or idli. You can garnish the halwa with blanched and chopped almonds and pistachios.
Note: If you are using saffron, make sure you soak it an hour before preparing the Kesari Baath in warm milk. Add the saffron milk after roasting the semolina in ghee.
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