Sweets have been part an Indian meal for centuries, whatever religion, or part of India one hails from, a ‘little something sweet’ post is a must. For every English cake, we have at least 10 varieties, only from one region. We have put together a list of the interesting ones that caught our fancy. Read on, or sample them.
Khubani Ka Meetha – Andhra Pradesh
Credits: Ajay Ananth
Khubani Ka Meetha is a traditional sweet of Hyderabad and made with apricots. Khubani, the Urdu for apricots, is a dish that combines the tanginess of the fruit and the sweetness and richness of cream or custard. Apricots are boiled to make a thick syrup, to which sugar syrup is added and garnished with cream.
Khaja, a favourite in Bihar, is similar to the Turkish Baklava. It is layered into dough, stuffed with dryfruits, sometimes it is eaten without stuffing. It is then dippped into sugar syrup and deep fried. Fluffy and sweet, it is usually had as snacks with tea or coffee.
Rajasthan – Ghevar
The popular dessert, that is now famous all across India, is prepared with flour, deep fried in ghee and soaked with sugar syrup. Ghevar is of many varieties – plain, one filled with dryfruits, or filled with khoya or cream. Very rich, sweet and creamy, ghevar comes in a filligre shape in a mould, for the purpose of community eating.
Bal Mithai – Uttarakhand
Bal Mithai is chocolate fudge coated with white small sugar balls. It’s very popular with locals especially, in Almora and Ranikhet (Uttarakhand). It is made by cooking khoya until it becomes dark brown. After it is settled, it is cut into small cubes. Chocolaty with a sweet milk taste, it is a delight.
Shufta – Jammu & Kashmir
Very healthy (must be because of the amount of dry fruits one eats), this famous sweet of Kashmir ,’shufta’ is nutty and is served mostly for breakfast with milk or tea. Made of cheese, nuts and sugar syrup, it is served warm and is garnished with coconut. This desert is ideal during winter to keep one’s body warm.
Puran Poli – Maharashtra
Puran Poli is a traditional sweet prepared during the festival of Holi in Maharashtra. Resembling a a big roti, the dough is made of chana or toor daal to which jaggery, flour, ghee, cardamom powder and and sugar is added.
Payasam – Kerala
An intrinsic part of Kerala cuisine, Payasam is served in all major festivals in the state. Made with rice, wheat, coconut milk, sugar and jaggery.