Zarda ~ Kashmiri Special | Indian Cooking Challenge - March

>>  Monday, April 15, 2013

Indian Cooking Challenge for March saw us making a simple, delicious sweet dish with rice from the Kashmiri Cuisine, Zarda ~ Sweet Saffron Rice. While this might sound very much like the Sakkarai Pongal of our South, Zarda surely differs in its rich inclusion of nuts and tutti fruity etc.

As always I almost left it very late to decide on the recipe and with the full month marathon going on, I thought I could give that excuse. Some of the members wrote to me asking for the challenge and I reluctantly refused, quoting the nonstop marathon. Finally, Vaishali wrote to me asking why I hadn't put up any recipe. When I said I wanted to skip, she said we could make a simple sweet and suggested this recipe. So knowing this dish wouldn't really take that much time, I went ahead announcing it. 
Sweet Saffron Rice
However, I ended up making it for Sunday lunch. With the recipe being so simple, it surely tastes great and makes the dish very special. Though I don't prefer Tutti Fruiti, the recipe calls for this, so had to add it. This is also called as the Sweet Saffron Rice.

It was quite an eventful day for me, I was successfully cooked all the dishes I had planned for the day. Boys were so busy with the computer games, they have finally got themselves hooked to games on the system and I almost have to cajole them to let me sit to work. We also visited my friend, who's got twin girls. They are now six months and I finally went to meet them. The babies were so cute and adorable. My kids wanted to bring them to our home. Aunty also had sent us about 5 mini jackfruits, I wanted to keep few to ripe, a couple for making dry curries and gravy. Now my task is to find recipes to make the dishes!

Zarda Sweet Saffron Rice 

Ingredients Needed

Basmati - 2 cups
Sugar - 1 cup
Pistachio (chopped) - 6 to 8
Almond (chopped) - 6 to 8
Candied fruits/ murabba / Tutti fruity - handful
Cloves - 3
Cinnamon - 2"
Oil or Ghee - 3 tsp
Green cardamoms - 4 to 6
Milk - 1/2 cup
Yellow Food Color Pinch
Saffron Strands few

How to make Zarda:

Wash and soak the basmati rice for 15 mins.

In a pan take sugar and enough water to cover, make syrup. Keep it aside.

Soak the saffron in warm milk, keep it aside.

In another pan put ghee and heat it. Add cinnamon, clove, and cardamom and when it starts smelling then add drained rice and 1 cup of water.

When the water starts drying then add milk, yellow colour. Cover and cook in simmer. Finally, add sugar syrup.

Roast all the dry fruits in ghee and add half of the roasted nuts to the pan.

When the rice is cooked, remove and garnish with rest of the nuts, Tutti fruity.

Since we are doing the traditional theme this week, this recipe suited us just fine! I must thank Suma, Preeti for asking me on that, else I might have ended up making two dishes..:)

Logo courtesy : Preeti

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM# 27


To all my ICC members, please link your post to Mr. Linky


Priya Suresh April 15, 2013 at 3:00 AM  

Seriously i got hooked to this super royal sweet rice..Loved this challenge very much..

Pavani N April 15, 2013 at 7:18 AM  

I totally missed the challenge this time Valli. Rice looks amazing. Love the color.

Manjula Bharath April 15, 2013 at 7:25 AM  

yummy puloa for dessert :) looks super delicious dear and very well explained :) am your new follower ..

nayana April 15, 2013 at 8:19 AM  

Hi Srivalli,

Love the concept of ICC challenge and would love to participate , if possible. If you are including new members please let me know.

Rafeeda AR April 15, 2013 at 11:13 AM  

looks seriously yummy....

vaishali sabnani April 15, 2013 at 2:03 PM  

wow!..what a feast!..the zarda looks nice, hope you all enjoyed the royal rice:))well even I dont like the tutti fruity..and skipped it!

The Pumpkin Farm April 15, 2013 at 9:31 PM  

saw it at Priya's space first and mouthwatered, i m inling at joining ICC beyond my comfort zones, love the challenge though

Saraswathi Tharagaram April 16, 2013 at 2:49 AM  

Irresistible Sweet. looks so rich and colorful.

Harini-Jaya Rupanagudi April 16, 2013 at 8:25 AM  

As far as I am concerned, this royal zarda was irresistible..A sweet lover's dream :)

Suma Gandlur April 16, 2013 at 9:43 AM  

Tried it Valli. The original recipe given needs adjustments regarding the liquid measurements, I guess.

Rajani S April 16, 2013 at 8:00 PM  

The meal looks really nice. The clicks are very beautiful.

I am looking forward to the jackfruit (its called idichakka here) recipes from you. Its used to make thoran.

Preeti Garg April 17, 2013 at 2:47 PM  

Wow..really amazing and love this recipe in my kitchen and as well as on blog.

Suchi Sm April 22, 2013 at 2:51 PM  

delicious sweet rice...

Nivedhanams Sowmya April 24, 2013 at 12:29 PM  

so delicious and such a royal rice!! looks very delicious and aromatic... still to try this,..
Event - Bake Fest
Event - Celebrate - Summer

veena krishnakumar April 30, 2013 at 4:57 PM  

Loved cooking this valli. Thak you for the wonderful challenge. Zarda looks very delicious with all that colour on the top

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