A gourmet spin on our archaic “Sandesh” with the added richness of almonds. Sandesh, a quintessential Bengali dessert typically made with full fat milk and sugar, can be effortlessly teamed up with wide ranging fruits or infused with aromatic flavours such as cardamom, saffron etc. Since “Litchi” undeniably rules the roost as fruit of the season, it forms the underlying theme of my recipe.
This luxurious concoction goes that extra mile where the Pie is dunked in a creamy Kesar Rabri releasing a myriad of tastes and textures with every slice wedged out and devoured. The ensemble of ingredients, flavours & textures makes this dessert literally melt in your mouth leaving you craving for more…
My husband, who not only has a sweet tooth, but is also an über connoisseur and critic of desserts simply loved this one…making my day and his for sure!!!
|Servings||3 – 4|
|Prep time||10 min + overnight soaking time|
|Cook time||20 – 30 min|
Ingredients for the Rabri
(1 cup=200 ml, 1 tbsp=15 ml)
|1½ litres||Full fat milk|
|¼ th cup||Sugar|
|1 slice||White bread (crust removed)|
|A few||Saffron strands (kesar)|
|½ tsp||Cardamom powder|
|1–2 tsp||Kesar doodh masala powder|
|A few||Chopped almonds and pistachios|
Ingredients for the Litchi Almond
(1 cup=200 ml, 1 tbsp=15 ml)
|1 litre||Full fat milk|
|A few||Lemon drops|
|1 cup||Almonds whole|
|2-3 tsp||Powdered sugar|
|1 tsp||Cardamom powder|
|A few drops||Almond essence (optional)|
|½ cup||Chopped green pistachios|
|12 – 14||Fresh litchis, finely chopped|
|Silver vark for garnish|
|A few rose petals to garnish|
Instructions for the Rabri
|1.||Heat the milk in a heavy bottom vessel.|
|2.||Let it reduce to 3/4th quantity on a slow flame. Keep stirring from time to time.|
|3.||Churn the bread in a blender (using 2 tbsp of milk). Add to the milk mixture.|
|4.||Add in the sugar too. Keep stirring and boiling the milk for 5-7 minutes more.|
|5.||Now add the cardamom powder, kesar doodh masala and the saffron strands. Mix well. Boil for 2 minutes. Switch off the flame.
|6.||Cool the Rabri completely and refrigerate for ½ hour.|
|7.||Garnish the Rabri with almonds and pistachios.|
Instructions for the Litchi almond pie
|1.||Soak the whole almonds in warm water overnight. Next morning remove their skin and grind to a smooth fine paste.
|2.||Boil the milk. Add lemon drops and let milk curdle. Collect the soft chenna (paneer). Rinse it and keep aside.
|3.||Mash the chenna with your palms and add the almond mixture to it. Add in the powdered sugar (adjust sweetness as per your taste)
|4.||Add the cardamom powder and almond essence and mix well. Set it in a ring mould as shown and chill in fridge for 1 hour.
|5.||Remove the almond pie and top with chopped green pistachios. Top that layer with chopped litchis.
|6.||Arrange the chilled rabri around the pie in a dish. (In case rabri is too thick, please add ½ cup of chilled milk with a pinch of sugar).|
|7.||Garnish the dish with silver vark and rose petals.|
|1.||Incase the fresh litchi isn’t too sweet pls increase the sugar quantity in the chenna almond mixture by 1 – 2 tsp|
|2.||You could use tinned litchis too for the recipe. Pls drain the sugar syrup.|
|3.||Whilst chopping the litchis pls drain the excess juice it leaves. We don’t want the water to ooze out into the sandesh|