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Monday, April 15, 2013

Zarda ~ Sweet Saffron Rice

Srivalli chose Zarda, a Kashmiri sweet dish for this month's Indian Cooking Challenge and this delicacy is going to double up as my final day post under "traditional recipes" theme of the month long blogging marathon here.
Zarda / Zarda Pulao / Zafrani pulao is a sweet dish from India (mostly in the state of Kashmir) and Pakistan regions. It is a popular dessert in weddings and usually served after a meal. I always associated saffron with the name of the dish but according to Wiki, the addition of yellow food color to the dish gives it's typical color and the name. The word 'Zarda" means yellow in Persian and Urdu. It is similar to the preparation of the sweet pongal from the south Indian region, the difference being in the consistency and the use of spices in the dish. The spices are obviously used since it is a pulao dish but I realised that I would more prefer to let go the cloves and cinnamon if I try the dish next time.
 I read on wiki that the rice is simmered in a mixture of milk and sugar. And so I modified the measurements for water and milk, while drafting this. Actually I went along with the measurements provided for water/milk and added sugar syrup in between cooking. The rice was uncooked after all the liquid was absorbed and so I added some more liquid and pressure cooked it.

Ingredients: (3- 4 servings)
1 cup Basmati rice
1/2 cup sugar
1 Tbsp ghee
1 Tbsp each - Almonds / Pistachios / Raisins
1 - 2 cloves, 1 inch piece cinnamon & 2 green cardamom
1 cup milk
A handful of Tutti frutti / murabba
A pinch of yellow color
A pinch of saffron strands soaked in 1 Tbsp warm milk

1. Wash and soak Basmati rice for 15 minutes.
2. In a pan, heat sugar and add 2 - 3 Tbsp water, until a syrupy consistency is reached. Keep it aside.
3. In another pan, toast the nuts and raisins in ghee, remove them with a slotted spoon and keep them aside. 
4. To the same ghee, add the cinnamon, clove and cardamom. When the aroma starts coming, add the drained rice and 1 cup water. When the water is almost absorbed, add milk and the yellow food color. Cover and cook on low flame until done. Finally add the sugar syrup.
5. Garnish with toasted nuts and tutti frutti.

Check what other marathoners are cooking during this month long marathon.  



Akila said...

Looks awesome
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Shobha said...

Flavourful preparation.. nicely presented too !

Srivalli said...

Looks awesome Suma..even I decided not to add spices the next time I make..and the fact that we use sugar syrup gives that glaze on the top..With tutti fruiti your bowls are so inviting..

Priya Suresh said...

Prefectly cooked rice grains,beautiful Zarda makes me drool.

Sapana Behl said...

Yummy and fabulous!

vaishali sabnani said...

OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!You guys are very smart..all of you have taken advantage of the ICC ..but surely the Zarda looks very good..

Srimathi Mani said...

Looks very colorful.

Vimitha Anand said...

Flavorful and tempting rice
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Sadaf Afshan said...

Zarda is one of my favorite desserts. Your clicks are awesome.

Preeti Garg said...

zarda is really so good, and colorful

Preeti Garg said...

zarda is really so good, and colorful

The Pumpkin Farm said...

very neat and clean picture, nice recipe

Pavani N said...

Such a colorful and delicious rice dish.

Harini-Jaya Rupanagudi said...

Looks very nice and colorful!

Archana Potdar said...

Wow I want to dive into this one. looks yum and I cannot talk now. My mouth is full.:)

Suchi Sm said...

Looks yummy.. absolutely delicious...

veena krishnakumar said...

love the colour. Looks so inviting