Shahi tukda or shahi tukra – is a very popular rich desert that has originated during the Mughal reign. To make shahi tukda, bread is deep fried in ghee till golden. Then garnished with rabri, nuts and mawa/khoya. Most times this delight is served towards the end of a feast where a meat biryani is the star. This makes a great dessert for parties, large family gatherings or for Iftar.
The aunthetic shahi tukda recipe is made by deep frying the bread in ghee. In the modern days, most people are health conscious and do not prefer high calorie desserts. So it can also be pan fried with ghee smeared over it. However it can also be baked and used here.
To make shahi tukda, rabri is made by condensing the milk until it thickens or reduces to at least half the original quantity. If you have the time and patience to make it, then you can follow this rabri recipe.
If one does not like to toil near the stove for long hours for making rabri, then ready condensed milk tin can be used. You can also instead blend few soaked almonds and add to the boiling milk. Under 5 minutes, the best aromatic rabri will be ready. This is the way I always make shahi tukda.
Easy shahi tukda or shahi tukra recipe
Shahi tukda recipe | How to make shahi tukda | Shahi tukra
Ingredients (1 cup = 240ml )
- 6 slices bread
- 2 tbsp ghee or ¾ cup ghee (for deep frying)
- 3 ½ cups milk (or use condensed milk)
- 4 tbsps. sugar (for making the Rabri)
- 1/3 cup sugar (for making syrup)
- 2 cardamom powder (or elaichi)
- ½ tsp rose essence
- 20 Almonds (soaked for 4 hrs, optional)
- 1 Pinch saffron (or kesar)
- 1 Handful pistas (or cashews)
- 3 tbsps khoya or mawa for garnishing (optional)
- ½ cup water for sugar syrup
How to make the recipe
Preparation for shahi tukda
- Air dry or sundry the bread for 3 to 4 hours. You can also toast them on a pan. Do not use moist bread or bread from the fridge directly as they tend to absorb lot of ghee and have to fry longer to make crispier.
- Soak saffron in 2 tbsps. hot milk.
Making rabri for shahi tukda
- Method – 1 Bring milk to a boil in a wide pot. Simmer and boil until layers of cream form on top. Slide the cream to the sides and stick it. Continue to boil until another layer forms. This process must go on until the milk reduces to half. Then add sugar and continue. Remove all the layers of cream and add it to the rabri.
- Method – 2 Grind peeled almonds with 3 tsps. Sugar, cardamom powder and ¼ cup milk to a very smooth paste. Pour to the 3 ½ cups milk and boil on a low flame till it reduces to almost 2 cups.
- Continue to boil for 10 mins on a low flame. Keep stirring since the almond mix tends to get burnt very fast. Rabri is ready. Set aside to cool.
Making sugar syrup for shahi tukda
- Mix sugar with little water that is just enough to immerse it. Boil and bring to a 1 string consistency. Switch off the flame. Add rose essence.
- Remove the brown edges and cut the bread diagonally. Each slice into 2 or 4 as you desire.
- On a low flame deep fry the bread evenly till they turn golden and crispy. Alternately you can tawa fry with ghee till they turn crispy. Set aside.
How to make shahi tukda
- Immerse these bread slices in the sugar syrup one after the other and place them in a serving plate.
- Pour the rabri over the bread slices and garnish with toasted pistas. You can also sprinkle koya over it.
- Serve shahi tukda warm or chilled.
Making rabri for shahi tukda recipe
Firstly air dry or sun dry bread for 3 hours. This helps bread not to soak up ghee when fried. You can also pan toast it first and then use to deep fry.
1. Bring milk to a boil in a heavy bottom pot.
2. This one and the next 3 steps are optional. If you want your condensed milk to be ready under 5 minutes, follow these steps. Soak almonds for 4 to 5 hours. Then remove the skin. Blend them with 2 green cardamoms, little milk, sugar and a generous pinch of saffron/ kesar. I added sugar later to the milk directly.
3. The almond paste must be very smooth.
4. When the milk comes to a boil, then add this paste.
5. Stir and cook on a medium flame.
6. Under 4 minutes, milk thickens and begins to smell aromatic. Switch off and set aside. Aromatic condensed rich milk is ready. If you have not used almonds, condense the milk until it thickens and reduces to half.
7. Trim the brown sides of the bread. Cut to triangles as well. Deep fry or tawa fry or bake the bread triangles. If tawa frying, smear ghee all over the bread and toast on a medium heat. Set aside.
If making for festive occasions, i suggest deep frying. We need to fry bread to golden.
Making sugar syrup for shahi tukda
8. Add 1/3 cup sugar and little water to a wide pan to make sugar syrup.
9. Next simmer it until it comes to a one string consistency. If you are a beginner, don’t worry much about the string. But make sure the syrup is a bit thick and not very thick. Switch off the stove. If you like you can add rose essence now.
10. Cool it a bit. Add bread slices and make sure syrup is coated well over the bread.
Assembling shahi tukda or shahi tukra
11. Place them on a serving dish. Any left over sugar syrup can be poured to the serving dish.
12. Lastly pour the condensed milk all over the bread. Garnish with pistachios, almonds, nuts, saffron.
To make shahi tukda, do add some crumbled khoya/ mawa over the bread. Allow it to absorb for a while and serve.
You can also make individual servings by arranging bread in a deep plate. Add rabri to a small cup and nuts to a small bowl.