Saturday, 5 December 2015


Sheera is a sweet preparation of Semolina that's a staple at my place. The recipe can be made in a couple of ways. When Sheera is served as 'Prasad' to the deity, it is usually done along with a basil leaf. In my culture, it is believed that holy basil/तुळस purifies the atmosphere by destroying negativity.

Small differences like adding water instead of milk, drastically change the taste of the final product.
Most people being health conscious, replace ghee with oil, or milk with water which I don't support. A Marathi idiom goes like 'खाईन तर तुपाशी, नाहीतर उपाशी', which literally translates to 'You either have it the way it's meant to be, or you stay hungry'. The idiom is also used to signify that you expect the best and will not settle for substandard! Getting back to Sheera, the traditional proportion for prasad is equal amounts of ghee, semolina and sugar, which tends to get a little 'heavy' for my liking. Also when you refrigerate the Sheera that's made with these proportions, the ghee tends to coagulate (थिजणे), which I personally don't like. Enough said, here's the recipe:

Serves 2

Recipe for Sheera:

Rawa/Semolina 1/2 cup, Coarse Variety
Ghee3 Tbsp
Sugar1/2 Cup
Milk1 Cup
SaffronA few strands
Blanched Almonds6, Sliced
Cashewnuts4 - 5
Cardamom Powder1/2 tsp

Serves 2

How to make Sheera:

1. Heat the milk in a pan until it just begins to boil (not scalding).
2.Heat ghee in a pan and fry the cashewnuts. Once they're done, let them drain on an absorbent paper
3.Add the rawa/semolina to the heated ghee and sauté it until it turns pinkish-brown.It will begin to give a beautiful aroma, and that's when you know that you don't want to take it any further, since it will give the rawa a bitter taste.
4.Next, add the slivered almonds and milk to the rawaBe very carefull since the mixture will be very hot and subsequently splutter.Stir well to make a smooth mixture.
At this point, you will see that the amount of liquid is way more than that of the rawa but don't panic. Keep stirring and the rawa will soak up the liquid in no time.
5.Now cover the pan and let the sheera cook for 3-4 minutes on low heat, stirring occasionally.
6.Next, add the sugar and cook for about 2-3 minutes until the sugar dissolves, stirring occasionally.
7.Turn off the heat and add the cardamom powder.You're done!
8.Garnish the sheera with strands of saffron and fried cashewnuts.

Sheera stays well in the refrigerator for 4-5 days.

This recipe will give you ~1000 calories.

*If you choose to add banana to the sheera, do so between steps 3&4.
*Sheera is also made with jaggery. To make that,simply replace the sugar with the same amount of jaggery. The jaggery gives the sheera a beautifull golden colour. So, you can skip the saffron.
 Iv'e never made sheera with jaggery and bananas. If you happen to try it, let me know how it went!
*You could dilute the milk with an equal amount of water, but if you're making this recipe for the first time, I suggest you follow the recipe and then tweak it if you deem it necessary.

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