Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Thandaai/Thandai-Holi Recipe

Holi is just around the corner and the festive preparations are in its full swing! The festive mood is already set in the markets of Chandigarh and I love the fun! As I get ready for Holi M is getting ready for Ind-WI match.. phew! After all thatz what every household deals with right??
Anyway coming to the recipe, Thandaai is a special drink made on Holi and its usually served with a shot of Bang on Mahashivratri as prasadh! I have heard my father speaking about Thandaai served during Shivratri but have never tasted it. But now I m in the land of celebrations and I m enjoying and understanding every festival and celebrations true to its roots and I’m lovin’ it! So here is my share for the festive season!

Milk-1/2 liter
Melon seeds (Magaz)-1 tbsp
Poppy seeds-1 tbsp
Fennel seeds-1/2 tsp
Cinnamon-1 small piece
Cardamom-2 pods
Black Peppercorns-5-10
Rose essence-2 drops
Sugar-2 tbsp
To Garnish:
Rose petals (Dried/Fresh)-1 tsp
Saffron-few strands

How It Happened:
1. Soak cashews, almonds and melon seeds in little water. In another bowl soak the fennel seeds, poppy seeds, cinnamon, black pepper and cardamom for 30 minutes. Soak the saffron strands in about 2 tbsp of warm milk.

2. Peel the skin of the blanched almonds. Put all the soaked ingredients in a blender and blend to a smooth paste using a little milk or water.
3. Heat milk in a pan, when it starts boiling add sugar and mix until it dissolves. Then add the ground paste and mix well. Simmer for 2 minutes. Switch off the flame and let it rest for 15-20 minutes.
4. Then strain milk through a soup strainer to remove any coarse residue.

5. To the milk add rose essence and saffron milk and mix well. Let it chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
6. Pour into serving glasses, top with chopped pistachios and rose petals and serve chilled.
* Use full fat milk for nice rich and creamy texture.
* During holi celebrations, a shot of Bang is added to it in Northern parts of India.
* After adding the ground paste to the milk, let it rest for 30 minutes for the flavors to blend in.
* The coarse residue left behind after straining the milk, is rich and spicy so you can use it in gravies. Do not throw away!
* I added rose essence since we like only mild rose flavor. You can add gulkhand/dried rose petals while grinding.

* I added more peppercorns and less fennel seeds to suit our preference. So adjust as per taste. But take care more fennel seeds may be very overpowering and put off the total flavors!

Oh! I wish you all a happy holi!

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