This dish is a breakfast item. It is a dessert, a snack and everything in between. In Maharashtra, it’s known as sheera where it is made using milk instead of water (the way my mum always made it). Up north, it is made like this where it is called sooji ka halwa. And in south India, it is yellow/orange in colour and made with a whole lot more ghee. Here down south, it is known as rawa kesari. If you ask me, I prefer the Southern kesari. I don’t care too much for the added colour though. But, I do relish the extra ghee! Rava/rawa is the same as suji/sooji. It is a kind of semolina. This dish is made as an offering during many Hindu festivals too. In many homes, it is a regular breakfast item, while in some, it is a treat enjoyed only during certain festivals. Preparation of this dish is all about proportion. You don’t have to be accurate. But you must have a good estimate. Without further ado, here is the recipe for it.
Ingredients: It’s easy to remember. Same amount of rava and sugar. Double the water or even 2.5 will do but not less than double because the rava has to absorb the water and swell up. Half the amount of fat and add as many dry fruits as you like.
1/2 cup ghee
1 cup Rava/sooji (preferably fine/Bombay rava)
1 cup sugar
2-2.5 cups water
1/2 cup dry fruits and nuts
A few saffron strands/cardamom powder
Saffron essence, optional
Pinch of salt
This dish is very easy to make and is amateur level. It doesn’t need much preparation time/planning either. If you prefer South Indian kesari, add some more ghee…about 1/4cup more. Also add some yellow/saffron colour. If you prefer Maharashtrian sheera, use 1 cup milk and 1 cup water. So 50% of each. Also use less ghee. You can also make lovely fruity sheeras. I make a delicious pineapple kesari. Just add 2 cups of boiled pineapple cubes which you can boil with the sugar water itself. Another delicious variant is Mango sheera. Use mango cubes for that.
I hope you enjoy cooking and eating/serving this dish.