Sooji Sheera or Semolina Pudding is a popular Indian dessert that can be made in minutes. It has many variants all over India like Sooji Halwa, Rava Sheera, Rava Kesari and more. This is one of the few desserts that can be whipped up with pantry ingredients, without any advance preparation. It is traditionally served on many festive occasions and Puja (prayer ceremonies) as Prasad (religious offering, consumed after completion of ceremonies).
It is extremely easy to customize this to your taste. In my variation of this classic, I add a few tablespoons of almond meal (or almond flour) to the recipe. It adds a creamy rich taste of almonds and bumps up the protein in this dish, making it healthier for my kids. My kids love it for breakfast too! I like using a combination of Ghee and unsalted butter for this recipe, but you can stick to one if you prefer it that way. I make this Sheera using a half-and-half mix of milk and water. You could make it with all milk or all water too. I added saffron to the milk/water mix before warming it so that the saffron would release its flavor and color to the Sheera. You can omit the saffron if you prefer.
Sometimes, I make the classic recipe, without any almond meal or saffron, and it tastes heavenly too. I make it and turn off the heat when it’s at a semi-dry consistency. Then, I pour it in silicone baking cups, even it out with the back of a spoon, and let it set for a few hours. For plating, I simply invert the silicone molds on to a plate and the semolina cakes just slide off. I garnish it with sliced almonds and crushed cardamom. My kids love this presentation!
Sooji Badaam Sheera (Semolina Almond Pudding)Print Recipe
- 1/2 cup Semolina / Sooji (coarse or fine)
- 2 tablespoons ghee or unsalted butter (I use 1 tbsp of each)
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 tablespoon chopped cashews
- 1 tablespoon chopped almonds
- 1/2 teaspoon Cardamom Powder (5-6 pods)
- 2 tablespoon Almond Meal (optional)
- 3/4 cup warm milk mixed with 1/2 tsp saffron
- 3/4 cup hot water
Prep: If using nuts, chop them coarsely. Warm milk, water and saffron, together in the microwave for 2 minutes. Keep aside.
Add ghee/butter in a sauce pan and melt on medium heat for 20-30 seconds. Add your choice of chopped nuts and raisins and sauté for 1 minute. Add Sooji (and almond meal) and sauté for 5 minutes on medium flame, this is to cook away the rawness of semolina (sooji).
Add the warm milk-water-saffron mix and stir continuously with a whisk or wooden spoon to avoid any lumps from forming.
When the mix reaches a semi-liquid consistency, add sugar and stir till sooji cooks off to a thick pudding-like consistency. Turn off the heat and add the cardamom powder and stir. Serve warm or cold.
You can choose to make this recipe without any nuts if you wish, it still turns out delicious! When you add warm liquid to the pan, it splashes, so use a deep sauce pan and a long whisk to be safe.