Kaju Burfi (Cashew Burfi)
Posted on April 27, 2014 by Viji
One of the most loved indian sweets and Maanas’ favorite, he decided to make it yesterday “all by himself”. Even after a small burn on one of his fingers, he didn’t give up. I must admit his kaju burfi turned out to be the best we have ever tasted!
For those who are not familiar with this sweet, it is powdered raw cashews mixed with a boiling sugar syrup of the right consistency, then spread on a flat, shallow dish and cut into bite-sized pieces. A sort of marzipan made with cashews instead of almonds, using much less sugar. Very easy to make and absolutely delicious!
The most important thing while making this sweet is to get the “thread consistency” of the sugar syrup right. The burfi can end up chewy and sticky or powdery based on whether the sugar syrup is under or over the right consistency. This one needs a “two thread” consistency. What that means, is if we take a little bit of the boiling sugar syrup in between the thumb and any other finger, and try to gently stick the fingers together and separate them slowly, we should be able to see that the fingers are connected with two thin threads of the syrup. Of course we don’t dip our fingers directly into the boiling syrup; instead take a little of the syrup in a small spoon and blow a couple of times to cool and then get a thin layer between the thumb and another finger. This is when Maanas burnt his finger. In that excitement, he forgot to blow the syrup before touching it. Anyway, he was fine in no time and had lots of fun through out.
You can practice just this part by boiling as little as one spoon of sugar and one spoon of water in a small pan and keep trying. First it will form one thread, that simply means you need to boil a little bit more. If you see 2 threads then it is the right consistency. If you see a thick thread or becomes too sticky connecting the fingers, it is over done. Don’t worry. Add a little bit of water, mix again, and start over. Make sure the fingers are not wet.
To find a different method to check the consistency of the syrup try: http://www.homecooksrecipe.com/2009/10/kaju-katli-cashew-burfi-for-diwali.html
Also, using a ‘whisk‘ to mix the ground cashew and the sugar syrup helps to have a smooth dough without any lumps.
Normally when we buy Kaju Burfi from stores, they are decorated with edible silver foil. After reading many articles about how they are made with more aluminum than silver and even worse, how some of these foils are made, we are happy to have the sweets without it.
- 1 cup raw cashews
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup water plus a couple of spoons (just enough to cover the sugar in the pan)
It is easy if you remember just this: Sugar – half the quantity of cashews; Water – a little more than half the sugar.
Dry grind the cashews to a fine powder or paste (cashew butter).
Grease a flat plate with a drop of ghee (clarified butter). This is optional.
Add the sugar and water to a thick bottomed pan and keep the heat at medium-high. Stir once in a while. Once the bubbles start forming, keep checking the consistency frequently. Make sure the fingers are not wet while checking. As soon as you get the “two thread” consistency, SWITCH OFF the heat, add the powdered cashews and mix quick, preferably with a whisk. Once it is mixed well, transfer the mixture to the plate. Spread with a flat spatula by pressing very well. Leave for 10 minutes. Then cut them into diamonds or squares and leave it for cooling completely.