Thandai Recipe or Sardai is a cool and refreshing drink prepared with dry nuts and flavored with fragrant spices. A popular drink prepared for the festive occasion of Holi.
It’s just one week short of Holi and what I can think of besides savory snacks is THAND…AI. ‘Thand’ in Hindi means cold and therefore thandai refers to’a cool and refreshing drink’. Holi, a festival of color is incomplete without Gujiya and Thandai recipe. So here I am sharing with you an heirloom recipe from my grandmother’s kitchen (biji). Thandai Recipe
Growing up, our biji (grandmother) prepared a huge pitcher of Thandai on Holi. Her thandai recipe was a hit in the neighborhood and everyone just loved it. For kids, she used to skip some ingredients and would customize the recipe to our liking. This recipe brings backs so many childhood memories and its taste and flavor are still afresh in my mouth.
Before we begin, cool facts related to this drink. Bhang is the official drink of Holi. Bhang is a thick drink prepared with flower heads of cannabis and is served during the Holi season. Thandai is the non-alcoholic version and as kids, we were strictly served Thandai.
Now on to the recipe!
Thandai is quite popular in the North and is a summer coolant too! This recipe is prepared with a combination of dry nuts, rose petal paste (gulkand), saffron strands, black peppercorns, fennel seeds, charmagaz (mixed melon seeds) and spices. The use of all these nuts and spices is what makes this drink so soothing and refreshing.
To make this drink, all the nuts, and seeds are grounded to their powdered form and later added to the boiled milk. Once the spice-mix is added to the milk, allow it to sit for a while (an hour or more) so that it can soak in all the flavors. Later sieve it through a strainer and enjoy!
- Soaking saffron strands in hot milk releases its color and flavor.
- Pour in rose water, after the thandai is cooled. You can go easy on the rose water- taste and then add more.
- No rose spread/gulkand (sweet preserve of rose petals) on hand, no worries. Flavor thandai recipe with double the quantity of rose water. Adding dried rose petal leaves to Thandai will elevate its taste and boost its flavor.
- Thandai tastes best when served chilled.
This season discover the tastiest Thandai infused with a perfect balance of aromatic Indian spices and flavor. Hope you like this simple recipe and give it a try. If you happen to make it then either drop me a line below or share your yum pictures with me on Facebook. Would love to see your creation!
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- 2 cups Half and Half (use regular milk)
- 2 cups Whole milk
- 1 tablespoon Rose water
- 1/4 cup Sugar + 2 tablespoon (adjust according to taste)
- 3/4 - 1 cup Water (adjust accordingly)
THANDAI MASALA INGREDIENTS
- 1 tablespoon Cashew pieces
- 1 tablespoon Melon Seeds (chaar magaz)
- 1/2 teaspoon Saffron strands
- 1/2-1 teaspoon Cinnamon Powder
- 1/2 teaspoon Nutmeg Powder
- 1-2 teaspoon Rose petal spread (gulkand)
- 1 -1.5 teaspoon Saunf powder (Fennel seeds powder)
- 1 -1.5 teaspoon Cardamom Powder
- 1/2 teaspoon Poppy Seeds
- 10-12 pieces Almonds
- 10-15 pieces Pistachios
- 3-4 pieces Black Peppercorns
- Let's begin by soaking saffron strands in milk.
- Boil milk in a bowl and soak saffron strands in it.
- Allow it to sit for 15 - 20 minutes. Soaking saffron strands in hot milk releases its color and flavor.
- Stir it with a spoon and milk will have a beautiful pale yellow color. Set it aside.
- Let's assemble our thandai masala ingredients.
- Feel free to adjust spices according to taste.
- Add all the nuts and spices to a grinder.
- Grind spices to their powdered form. Set it aside.
- You can ground the spices in a motor and pestle too.
- Boil milk in a heavy bottomed pan.
- When it comes to a full boil, stir in the nuts and spices one by one.
- Whisk so that no lumps remain. Add sugar and keep stirring the liquid. Give it a good boil and take it off the flame. Allow it to cool completely.
- After 30 minutes stir in saffron flavored milk, rose spread and rose water. If no rose spread available add 2 tablespoon rose water.
- Allow it to sit for a while (an hour or more) so that it can soak in all the flavors. Later sieve it through a strainer, add water and refrigerate this drink for at least 3-4 hours or until chilled.
- Thandai taste best when served chilled.