Rava Kesari or Sooji Halwa is a pretty simple dessert/Naivedyam that can be made under 20 minutes. It needs few ingredients which are usually handy in any Indian household. Also the carb rich Sooji, Ghee (Clarified butter) which is fat and sugar gives strength after a fast so it's perfect food after fasting.
Usually Rava Kesari is prepared using water but I like to cook it with milk to give some richness to the dish. You can use all milk or milk and water both. I always use whole milk for desserts. I like to go with full flavors during festive time. But you can use 2% milk or water as per your preferences. I use Raw brown sugar in my cooking. No more white sugar except if I somehow can't find my brand of brown sugar in the store. But use what you have on hand.
All brown sugar are not same. Most of em are already bleached and molasses is added back so the dark color. 'Sugar in the raw' is one brand I've been using for a long time which is not bleached. There might be other brands but this is my fav. If you do not have it use regular sugar.
Also you can add flavor to Rava Kesari if you prefer. Add Mango pulp to the recipe , you get Mango Rava Kesari or add grated apple and cook to get Apple Rava kesari.
Ingredients (I use US standard measuring; 1cup=8oz=250ml):
- 1 cup Sooji (Semolina)
- 3/4 th cup sugar
- 1.5 cups whole Milk or any
- .5 cups water
- Saffron few pinches or preferred food color
- 2 Cardamom
- 3 tbsp Ghee or more
- 1/4 Dry fruits or more
Rava Kesari Recipe
- Soak Saffron in few spoons of warm milk.
- Heat a wide pan and take Tbsp Ghee. Fry the Sooji on a low flame till you get nice aroma. Keep it aside.
- Take a tsp of Ghee in the vessel. Add chopped dry fruits of your choice to the ghee. Fry till golden brown and keep aside. I usually use Cashews, Raisins and chopped Pistachios.
- Now heat 1.5 cup milk and 1/2 cup water in the above bowl. Add 2 Tbsp Ghee and 3/4 th cup Sugar. Once milk boils put stove on low and add Rava slowly while mixing.
- Cook the mixture for few minitues until it becomes thick. It is going to become harder as it cools down.
- Add saffron milk or food color to the Kesari now.
- Turn off stove. Add dry fruits. Mix. This way they retain some crunch
- Now cover the vessel and leave it to serve cold or serve warm.
- You can also place Rava Kesari in molds and remove so as to make desired shapes.
If you are looking for more quick dessert recipes under 20 minutes, do try my Coconut Ladoo, Doodh Peda, Kalakand , quick Rice kheer recipes which would take less time to prepare.