Kaju katli recipe or kaju barfi with video & photos. Easy & quick recipe to make perfect kaju katli like the ones we get in sweet shops. These kaju katli have a smooth & melt-in-the mouth texture with mild flavors of cardamom powder or rose water. Kaju translates to cashews & katli refers to thin slices.
This classic sweet, kaju katli is one of the most bought sweets from the halwai & Indian sweet shops during festivals & occasions. Most Indians usually gift these to friends & relatives to spread the joy of festive or special occasions.
Often people are intimated to make kaju katli at home as most recipes require checking the string consistency. But this recipe is very simple, quick to make & does not involve checking string consistency.
Moreover kaju katli needs only a few ingredients that are always available in Indian kitchens.
This Kaju katli is
- gluten free
- can be made vegan by using coconut oil
- is low fat
- simple & quick to make
I always make sweets at home and avoid buying from shops or frozen sections as the store bought ones contain preservatives. We also do not know the quality of sugar and other ingredients used.
With homemade kaju katli, you know what goes into it. We always have the option to use organic sugar and avoid artificial flavors.
How is kaju katli made?
Traditionally kaju katli was made by boiling the sugar syrup to a 1 string consistency and then the powdered cashews are added to it. This method yields great results as the mixture doesn’t get overcooked and the burfi turns right.
The method I have shown in this post is without making a string consistency which I adapted from my Badam burfi recipe. I have just brought the sugar syrup to a rolling boil and then added the cashew powder. Cooked further until it reaches a thick consistency.
This method also gives very nice kaju katli just like the ones in the sweet shops. However if you are an experienced cook then you can also boil the syrup to a one string consistency and then add the cashew powder.
Tips to make good kaju katli
1. Choosing cashews correctly & using it the right way is very important to make a good kaju katli. Here are my tips to choose
Buy unsalted premium quality cashews. Taste test them first before using in the recipe. Ensure they are fresh in taste and flavor. Avoid using cashews that smell or taste stale or rancid.
You can use whole or split cashews. I prefer to split them first to ensure they are good enough & free from bugs/worms & larvae. You may use them whole if you prefer.
2. Use cashews at room temperature: It is very important to use cashews at room temperature. If you store your cashews in the refrigerator like me, then lightly roast them on a low flame for a few minutes until they turn slightly hot to touch. Do not over roast them. We don’t want the kaju katli to discolor. The idea is to use moist free cashews. Cool them completely and then use them to grind.
3. Grinding cashews is the main step in the recipe. Use a small grinder jar or a spice jar to powder. Only pulse and blend for short time of about 25 to 30 seconds. Scrape the sides and pulse. Over blending the cashews or blending for too long will release oils from cashews. This will not give the right texture to the kaju katli. The mixture will begin to release oil if such powder is cooked.
4. Texture of cashew powder has to be fine but do not aim to make it as fine as flour. It will be slightly grainy or coarse. Make sure cashews are powdered as fine as possible without making the powder lumpy. Pulse the cashews in intervals and avoid running the grinder for long time.
5. Sieve the cashew powder without fail. This makes the cashew powder light, lump-free and also uniform so you have a kaju katli that is of uniform smooth texture. This step also helps to remove coarse chunks of kaju from the powder. Pulse the coarse chunks again in the grinder. Use a sieve that is not too fine. I use one that can sieve fine semolina.
6. Sugar syrup has to rapidly boil before the cashew powder is added to it otherwise the mixture may turn sticky. Since there is no sugar syrup consistency required for this recipe. This step is very important. The idea is that by the time the syrup comes to a rolling boil, it will be almost around 1 string consistency.
7. Do not overcook the mixture as it dries out the kaju katli.
8. Kneading the mixture well is the key to get smooth and mouth melting kaju katli.
1. Add 200 grams cashews to a blender jar. I had used cashews from fridge. I split open the cashews and then dry roasted on a low flame until crunchy. Cooled completely. I used 1 & 1/2 cups split cashews which weighed 200 grams.
2. Pulse or blend to make a powder. Do not blend at a stretch for long time as they begin to release oil and turn lumpy. I usually blend the cashews in intervals. Also make sure the kaju powder doesn’t turn hot or even warmas it changes the flavor.
3. To make sure the cashew powder is not too coarse I sieved it. You will need to use a spoon to pass it through the sieve.
4. I added back the coarse grains and blended again.
5. The cashew powder will be slightly grainy but not fine like flour. You can also split this kaju katli recipe and make the powder one day ahead. Store it in a air tight jar and use within the next 2 days.
Making sugar syrup
6. Add sugar to a non stick pan. I used 3/4 cup + 2 tbsps. The sweetness was right for us. If you prefer less sweetness then you can reduce 2 tbsp.
7. I poured 6 tbsp water. Pouring too much water is not right for this method as the mixture will have to be cooked for longer. So measure the water correctly.
8. Stir gently and dissolve the sugar completely on a medium heat. Sugar can scratch up the nonstick pan so be gentle. Bring the sugar syrup to a rapid boil.
How to make kaju katli
9. Next lower the flame completely and add cashew powder. I added in 2 batches. You may end up with lumps if the entire powder is added at one time.
10. Next mix very well to ensure there are no lumps. Scrape the sides and the spoon if the powder is stuck.
11. Keep stirring the kaju katli mixture consistently and cook on a low to medium heat until the mixture begins to thicken.
12. Next add 2 tsps ghee and 1 tsp rose water or cardamom powder.
13. Next continue to cook stirring well. As the mixture thickens it will leave the sides if not then add a few drops of ghee again.
14. With in few mins the mixture will come together and leaves the pan. It took about 9 minutes for me to reach this stage. This is just a guideline and may vary depending on the kind of pan and intensity of heat from your stove.
Check if the mixture is done
When the kaju katli mixture is done, set the pan aside. Take 1/4 tsp of the mixture and cool down a bit. Grease your fingers and make a ball out of it. You must get a non sticky dry ball. This means the mixture is ready.
If you do not get a dry ball it means the kaju katli mixture is under done and needs cooking further. Cook for a few more minutes.
15. Next quickly pour the prepared mixture to a greased plate or butter paper. If using unbleached parchment paper then grease it first and use.
16. When the temperature comes down to slightly hot or warm, then grease your hands and knead it well.
17. With in 2 to 3 mins the mixture will turn smooth and begin to look slightly dry meaning it is good to set.
18. Next cover the kaju barfi mixture.
19. Roll it to a oval shape of 1/4 inch thickness applying pressure evenly all over.
20. Lastly cool completely and cut to square or diamond shapes. I cut them to the size of Haldiram’s Kaju katli. You can cut them slightly bigger if you like.
How to cut kaju katli? First cut diagonally, spacing 1 ½ inches between each line. Then cut straight, spacing 1 ½ inches between each line. You will get diamond shaped kaju katli.
Most often vark or edible silver foil is placed over the kaju katli. If you prefer you can do it after slicing it.
Store kaju katli in a air tight jar. They keep good at room temperature for 5 to 7 days.
Kaju katli recipe
For best results follow the step-by-step photos above the recipe card
Ingredients (US cup = 240ml )
- Add 1½ cups cashews to a blender jar and pulse a few times until it turns to a powder.
- Do not run the blender for long time as the cashews begin to release oil and turn lumpy.
- To ensure the powder is not very grainy sieve it and blend the coarse particles again.
- The cashew powder will be slightly grainy.
How to make kaju katli
- Add ¾ cup sugar and 90 ml water to a non stick pan. Heat & dissolve it well.
- When the sugar melts off completely and begins to boil rapidly, add the cashew powder. Lower the heat.
- Mix well to blend the sugar syrup and cashew powder.
- The mixture must be smooth without any lumps.
- Keep stirring and cook on a medium heat until slightly thick.
- Then pour 1 teaspoon rosewater and one teaspoon ghee.
- You can also add 1/8 teaspoon cardamom powder.
- Cook till the kaju katli mixture turns thick and begins to leave the sides of the pan.
- If it doesn't then drizzle few drops of ghee again and mix.
- At this stage the mixture should not look dry but has to be moist and sticky.
Check if mixture is ready
- To check if the mixture is ready. Turn off the stove and set the pan aside.
- Take ¼ teaspoon of this kaju katli mixture and cool down a bit.
- Roll it to a ball with greased fingers. You must get a ball that isn't sticky.
- Upon cooling completely this has to get the texture of the katli or fudge.
- Next transfer the cooked kaju katli mixture immediately to a greased plate or parchment paper (butter paper).
- Let the temperature come down to warm or slightly hot.
- While the mixture is still slightly hot or warm, grease your palms and knead it for 2 to 3 minutes to a smooth crack free dough. (refer video or picture below)
- Another method is to place the mixture on parchment paper and cover it. Then knead it well with the paper over the mixture. Covering the mixture with parchment paper protects your palm from extreme heat.
- ( To fix ) If your kaju katli mixture tends to stick a lot, it means it is still underdone. So continue to cook the mixture for a little longer. If your mixture looks dry, sprinkle some boiled and cooled water and knead.
- Place the ball on a greased aluminum foil or a butter paper and cover it.
- With the help of a rolling pin, roll it evenly to ¼ inch thickness.
- Cool completely and cut to desired shapes. Store kaju katli in an airtight box.
- Water: Please stick on to the quantity of water mentioned in the recipe. If you add even little more water than mentioned in the recipe, you will have to cook the mixture for longer. This may alter the taste of kaju katli making it chewy.
- You can also boil the sugar syrup until it reaches 1 string consistency. Then add the cashew powder. Mix well and add ghee. Cook until the mixture leaves the sides of the pan. When it cools down a bit. Knead it well and follow as mentioned above.
- Before adding the cashew powder, make sure sugar has dissolved completely and has begun to boil well.
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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