Besan burfi is a North Indian sweet made with gram flour, sugar, ghee and cardamom powder. This mouth melting & delicious burfi is a traditional festive delight. It is made mostly during festivals and celebrations. Besan burfi is made on the same lines as besan ladoo. Both these are made with essentially the same ingredients however the method of making is slightly different.
What is besan burfi? Besan is the Hindi name for gram flour and burfi is an Indian fudge. Besan barfi is Indian gram flour fudge.
Traditional besan burfi recipe requires the skill of understanding sugar syrup consistencies. If you are a newbie my detailed post will help you easily understand it. I have also shared a lot of tips below.
This recipe is very easy and you can make it at a slow pace except for the last step. You don’t have to hurry up to follow the steps one after the other.
To begin with gram flour is roasted in ghee until it loses the raw flavor and turns aromatic. Then it is cooled down. Next 1 string consistency sugar syrup is prepared.
Then both these are mixed and poured to a greased tray to set. Lastly the mixture is garnished with chopped nuts. Once the burfi is set it is sliced.
This recipe will give you a perfectly set besan burfi that literally melts in your mouth. The texture comes close to the soft set ghee mysore pak but this has a nutty aroma.
Grease a 7 inch tray with ghee. You can also line a parchment paper. You can also sprinkle 1 tablespoon chopped nuts at the bottom if you prefer.
The most important step in this recipe is to measure the ingredients very carefully. Here are some tips that may help you.
Ghee: 120 grams (½ cup + 1½ tablespoons). It can be either in the liquid, solid or semi solid form. Meaning melted & unmelted both will be same.
Besan/ gram flour: 210 grams (2 cups). This time I used fine flour but slightly coarse also works well. If you want your besan burfi extremely smooth, then use fine flour. I did not sieve the flour. But instead I fluff up the flour in the jar with a fork and then scoop it to the measuring cup.
Semolina: I have used 2 tablespoons of fine suji here as it gives a slight texture to the besan burfi. It also imparts a slightly milky aroma. If you don’t want to use it substitute it with the same amount of besan. Check my tips below to know why I used it.
Sugar: 225 grams (1 cup + 2 tbsps). I used organic fine cane sugar. If you are using the regular refined sugar, cut down slightly as it is more sweeter.
1. Pour 120 grams ghee (½ cup + 1½ tbsps) to a heavy bottom wide pan. I used my pressure pan here. Heat it on a medium flame. When it melts and turns hot, add 2 tablespoons fine semolina. Mix and let it fry for 50 to 60 seconds.
2. Then add 2 cups besan (210 grams).
3. Mix them and begin to fry stirring continuously on a medium heat for 3 to 4 mins. Besan will absorb all of the ghee and the whole mixture will turn thick and clumpy at this stage.
4. After 3 to 4 mins, reduce the flame to low. Continue to stir and fry it until the color of the besan changes to deep golden. The mixture will burn if you stop stirring it. So stir it non-stop. As we continue to fry, ghee begins to release from besan and the mixture thins down gradually.
5. After about 20 mins of constant stirring and frying, the color of the besan changes to deep golden and begins to smell aromatic. At this stage you will know it is done so be extremely careful & remove if from the stove. We don’t want it to turn brown. Caution: If you continue to cook, it will turn brown and taste bitter.
6. Take it off the stove and place on the kitchen counter. Continue to stir for another 3 minutes as the besan continues to cook in the hot ghee even after taking off the heat. Take a small quantity of roasted besan and taste it. It should be aromatic and taste nutty. It should not have even a bit of raw taste. If it passes this test, it means it is perfectly done. Keep this aside to cool down.
Total cook time: I cooked exactly for 4 mins on a medium heat, for 16 mins on a low heat & another 3 mins with the stove turned off. However it may change with the kind of pan used, the source & intensity of heat. This is the color I got towards the end.
Making sugar syrup
7. Meanwhile make the sugar syrup. Add 225 grams sugar and pour ½ cup water to a pan. Stir well to dissolve it completely and bring this to a boil on a medium heat.
8. Let it cook for a few minutes until it reaches a 1 string consistency. Turn down the heat to low while you check the string consistency.
9. To check the 1 string consistency, take ¼ teaspoon sugar syrup and cool it. Take a few drops of syrup in between your thumb and forefinger. Separate the fingers gently. You should see a long string. Turn off the heat as soon as you see this consistency.
10. Set this aside to cool down slightly. After 5 mins, recheck to ensure the syrup consistency is right. Stir the syrup with a spoon and lift it. Let all of the syrup drop off. The last drop has to be thick like you see in the picture.
11. As it drops, it should have a long thread consistency.
12. Let this cool down to a slightly hot temperature. If you dip your finger in the syrup, you should feel it is hot and not warm. It is common for the organic cane sugar to crystalize, just scrape the sides with the spatula and add it to the hot syrup at this stage. Your sugar syrup should look something like shown in the picture below. The syrup is all liquid and still hot but not boiling hot.
If you see the syrup is not the same as here, then it means you have gone wrong with the syrup consistency.
Making besan burfi
13. Roasted besan must be warm or slightly hot. Ghee should be in melted form and should not be solidified. Add ¾ teaspoon cardamom powder to the besan and then pour half of the syrup to the warm besan. Mix it continuously until well blended.
14. The mixture will soon thicken in colder climates. So you have be quick.
15. Pour the rest of the sugar syrup and give a good mix. Be fast at this stage as the mixture will thicken soon especially in cold temperatures.
16. Pour it to the greased tray. The texture & consistency will be thick at this stage.
17. Spread it immediately with the spatula.
18. Sprinkle nuts & press down with the spatula. Cool it down until set. Depending on the temperature, besan burfi will set. It took 10 mins for mine to set at room temperature. On cooler days it took just 3 minutes to set.
19. When it comes down to warm temperature, slice the besan burfi.
Cool them completely and store in an air tight jar. You can also garnish with saffron if you like.
Tips to make besan burfi
Semolina: Some people don’t like extremely smooth/ paste like texture in their burfi. Using a small amount of semolina here adds a great texture. I have tried both the ways and we personally liked the one with semolina. It will be soft and won’t remain crunchy.
Sugar syrup consistency: The correct way to check the sugar syrup consistency is with cooled syrup. First cool ¼ tsp of syrup & then check the consistency with a few drops of it.
Any changes to the quantity of ingredients or deviating from the steps may not set the besan burfi. But you can still troubleshoot and fix it. If the burfi does not set, then pour the mixture back to the pan and cook until it turns thick and begins to leave the sides.
Then pour it to the tray and set. But remember not to overcook as you will end up with broken and dry burfi.
Ingredients (US cup = 240ml )
- 210 grams besan (2 cup gram flour)
- 2 tablespoon semolina (fine suji, refer notes)
- 120 grams ghee (½ cup + 1½ tbsps)
- ¾ teaspoon cardamom powder
- 225 grams organic sugar (1 cup + 2 tbsps)
- ½ cup water
- 12 almonds or pistachios (chopped or sliced)
- Grease a 7 inch pan and line it with a parchment paper. You can also use a steel plate. Slice handful of almonds or pistachios and keep aside.
- Heat ghee in a large heavy bottom pan. Add semolina and let it fry for about 50 to 60 seconds.
- Then add besan and mix well with the ghee. Begin to roast stirring continuously on a medium heat for 3 to 4 mins. At this stage the mixture will be thick.
- Next after 3 to 4 mins, reduce the flame/heat to lowest (as low as possible) & continue to stir. As it gets fried, the mixture will turn thinner and the ghee begins to release from the besan.
- Continue to fry stirring constantly until besan turns deep golden color and begins to smell aromatic. After frying for 20 mins, the color of the besan changes to deep golden, meaning it is done roasting. It will also turn runny, smooth and very aromatic.
- Remove it from the stove and place it on the counter. Continue to stir for another 3 mins as we don't want the mixture to burn. Cool little besan and taste test it, it should not taste raw and should be nutty. Set this aside to cool down slightly.
Making sugar syrup
- Add sugar and pour water to a pot. Stir well and dissolve it. Begin to cook on a medium heat.
- Let it bubble and boil until the syrup reaches a 1 string consistency.
- Lower the flame completely and check the consistency. Take ¼ teaspoon sugar syrup from the center of the pot and cool it.
- Take a few drops of this in between your thumb and forefinger. When you separate the fingers, you should see a single long thread. Turn off the stove immediately.
- Check this 2 to 3 times to ensure it is right. Check the step-by-step photos above. Cool the sugar syrup a bit to slightly hot temperature.
Making besan burfi
- Ensure besan has cooled down to warm temperature but the ghee is not solidified. The syrup is slightly hot & not boiling hot. If you put your finger in the syrup, you should feel it is hot and not warm. Check the picture in the step by step photo instructions so you don't go wrong at this stage. The syrup has to be all liquid and still hot.
- Add cardamom powder to the besan and then pour half of the sugar syrup.
- Quickly mix both of them and then pour the rest of the syrup. Mix well. You have to be quick at this stage as the mixture will begin to thicken fast.
- Immediately pour to the greased tray. Level it with the spatula and sprinkle chopped nuts. Press down with the spatula so the nuts stick to the besan burfi.
- It will begin to set immediately as it cools down depending on the temperature in your home. Mine took about 10 mins to cool down and set. Cut the burfi when it is slightly warm.
- Transfer the besan burfi to a air tight jar. Store at room temperature and use up within 2 weeks.
- If this is your first attempt, please take a look at the step by step photo instructions so you don’t go wrong.
- Besan has to be roasted well until deep golden and should not have the raw taste. It only takes a minute for the well roasted besan to burn and turn bitter. So take it off the stove in time.
- Also keep stirring it for a good 2 to 3 mins once you are done roasting as besan continues to get roasted even after taking off the heat.
- Sugar syrup has to be of strong 1 string consistency. A thin 1 string consistency won’t set the burfi well.
- Do not add hot sugar syrup to hot besan. Ensure besan has cooled down to warm temperature and the sugar syrup is slightly hot and not boiling hot.
- Troubleshooting: if your besan burfi doesn’t set then simply add it back to the pan and cook for a few minutes until the mixture slightly thickens and leaves the pan. This tastes the same except the texture is slightly different and your burfi will be lighter in color.
Alternative quantities provided in the recipe card are for 1x only, original recipe.
For best results follow my detailed step-by-step photo instructions and tips above the recipe card.
NUTRITION INFO (estimation only)
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