Bring 2 cups water to a boil. Pour half of the water to another small bowl. Soak almonds, pistachios and cashews in one bowl. Soak chironji seeds in another bowl.
After 30 mins, drain the hot water and pour cold water in both the bowls.
Meanwhile chop the dates to bite sized pieces and set aside.
Drain the water completely and peel the almonds and pistachios. Discard the skin and soak them in fresh room temperature water for at least 1 to 2 hours.
Drain the water from the chironji seeds and transfer them to a clean cloth. Pat them dry and rub gently. The skin begins to peel off. Discard the skin and any brown seeds that seem to be rancid. Keep the seeds in a small bowl and set aside.
When the nuts are soaked well after 1 to 2 hours, chop them very finely. Keep them aside. Ensure the nuts are dry before frying them.
Fine vermicelli is usually long and not broken. You will need to break them a bit and measure 1 cup (50 grams) and keep aside.
How to make sheer khurma
Heat 2 tbsps ghee in a heavy bottom pot. Fry cashews and almonds in hot ghee for about 1 to 2 mins.
Then add pistachios and chironji seeds. Fry all of them until crisp and golden. This takes about 5 to 6 mins as the nuts are soaked. When done, remove to a plate.
To the same pot, add dates and fry until they begin to smell good. Remove to a plate.
Pour 1 tbsp more ghee and add the seviyan. Saute on a low to medium heat until golden. Remove to a plate and keep aside.
To the same pot, pour 4 cups milk and bring it to a boil on a medium to low heat.
When the milk begins to boil, add the roasted vermicelli, half of the fried nuts, chironji seeds and dates.
Stir and cook until the vermicelli is cooked. You have to keep stirring every few mins to avoid the milk scorching. This took about 10 mins on a medium heat.
Add cardamom powder & sugar or condensed milk (optional). If using mawa (optional) add it now.
Simmer for a few more minutes until slightly thick yet runny. Sheer khurma will thicken upon cooling so turn off when it is of runny consistency. Add cardamom powder & rose water (optional).
Serve warm or chilled. Garnish with fried nuts, chironji seeds and dates.