Burfi or barfi is a sweet, fudgy Indian confectionary. Quite like its Western counterpart, it is made with loads of sugar and milk, but here it is flavoured with cardamom, saffron, fruit extracts or rosewater. Traditionally, milk solids, ground nuts and different types of flours are also used, but now even fancy versions with chocolate and cheese are hugely popular. For me, Diwali is incomplete without gulab jamuns and some kind of burfi.
- ⅓ cup ghee, plus extra, to grease
- 8-10 green cardamom pods or ¼ tsp ground cardamom
- ¼ cup almond meal (or fine crushed almonds)
- 3 cups coconut flakes
- 380 g dulce de leche (see Note)
- ½ cup white chocolate chips (optional)
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Cooling time 1 hour 40 minutes
Standing time 1 hour
Grease a brownie pan with the extra ghee. Set aside.
Remove the seeds from the cardamom pods and crush to a fine powder using mortar and pestle. Set aside.
In a large frying pan, melt the ghee over low heat. Add the almond meal and toast it for 1–2 minutes or until it is fragrant but has not changed colour. Increase heat to medium-low, add the coconut flakes and toast, stirring continuously, for 2–3 minutes or until you smell the aroma and they just start to turn light brown. Add the cardamom powder and stir well. Reduce heat to low, add the dulce de leche and stir until the mixture clumps together. Cook for a further 1–2 minutes or until the dulce de leche is warmed through, then remove from heat.
Transfer the mixture to the greased pan and, using a spatula or the back of a spoon, spread evenly. Let cool for 10 minutes, then cover the surface with baking paper and refrigerate for at least 1½ hours or until firm to the touch.
Melt the chocolate chips over a double boiler and drizzle over the burfi. Set aside for 1 hour or until the chocolate is set.
Cut into neat squares using a sharp knife dipped in hot water and serve.
• Dulce de leche is available from specialty food stores and selected delis.
Recipe from Sinfully Spicy by Tanvi Srivastava, with photographs by Tanvi Srivastava.