Rava Kesari

Kesari or Sojji (as it is derived from sooji) is often associated with the pre-marriage betrothel function or the "groom-meets-bride" ceremony in Tamilnadu (Needless to say that V was served Bajji-Sojji when they came to meet us first !! )

My mom-in-law's perfection of Kesari is still unattainable for me. Whenever I try to copy-cat her version, even without altering a spoonful of sugar, the end-result is just near-perfect and not the same as MIL's version. Probably it has something to do with her experience of cooking for so many years! :)

Rava Kesari
Rava cooked with Sugar and Ghee
Serves 2

What we need:
Rava - 1 cup
Sugar - 1 cup
Water - 2 cups
Elachi (Cardamom) powder - 1 tbsp.
Cashew nuts - 8 to 10
Dry grapes - 5 to 7
Ghee - 10 tbsp. or as required
Sliced Almonds(Badam) - 2 to 3 tbsp. Optional

How to do:
1. Heat Ghee in a Kadai or non-stick pan.
2. Roast the cashews till they turn golden brown. Remove, drain and set aside.
3. Roast the dry grapes till they turn fluffy. Remove, drain and set aside.
4. Add the rava to the remaining ghee. If required, add some more ghee.
5. On another stove, simultaneously boil the water in the ratio 1: 2 (i.e 2 cups water for 1 cup rava)
6. Fry till the rava gives out a pleasant aroma. Make sure it does not turn brown.
7. Drop a pinch of kesari color to the boiling water and add the water to the rava. Keep stiring as you add the water to avoid lumps. Stir well till the rava gets cooked.
8. Spread out the sugar all over the surface and close the pan with a lid. Let it cook for 3 to 5 minutes.
9. Open the lid, and mix well. By now the sugar would have dissolved fully.
10. Add the cardamom powder, roasted cashew, dry grapes and remove from the flame.

Garnish with sliced almonds. Serve as dessert or an evening snack with Bajjis.

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