I am not sure when I first tasted Malido. It must have been on one of my many visits to the Agiary (fire temple) as a kid. Traditionally, Malido was the domain of the local priests’ wife as it is a dessert that is served at most Parsi religious occasions like Jashan’s and also as an offering to our dearly beloved as part of their prayer ceremonies. I remember having Malido’s that were chock full with dry fruits paired with the slightly salty Parsi flat bread called the Paper which contrasted well with the fudge sweetness of the Malido.
In today’s time, the fate of the Malido has gone the way of Vasanu and Dar ni Pori. It’s become a dish we eat only at religious occasions because the local Agiary still makes the best version or we simply buy it from an aunty we may know who makes it. Ofcourse, you can forget about the dried fruits now – most places just make an orange looking fudge of sorts that is a shadow of what the real Malido tastes like.
But I can understand why we keep eating it. Because, making it at home is out of the question. After all, the traditional recipe requires you to combine the flours and make a dough, then you make flatbreads and fry these in the ghee, then you hand pound these flatbreads and cook it some more until you have a coarse wheat pudding. I got tired just reading all that!
A version of Malido is served as a dessert in many ethnicities, the Bohri’s call it Maleeda, the Rajasthani’s refer to it as Churma and I am sure it’s served up with a different name amongst many other Indian communities. At the heart of it, it’s wheat flour and semolina cooked together with sugar and ghee. Ofcourse, us Parsi’s also add an egg to it because why the hell not?
When I first came across a recipe for Malido in one of the Parsi cookbooks, I did try making it. However, I can barely make roti’s so spending the time to make roti’s only to then crush them all by hand seemed like a pointless waste of time. Since then I’ve tried various version (at least 5 or 6) only to never be able to recreate the Malido of my childhood.
Which is why, it’s been seven years since I started this blog and there’s still no Malido recipe!
Anyways, fast forward to us moving back to New Zealand and buying our own home. We were going to have our Jashan and I told my mom how nice it would have been to have some Malido at our Jashan just like we would have in India. Turns out, she knew someone who knows how to make the most amazing Malido. In fact, I’ve shared her Tomato per Eedu recipe with you guys before and that’s received rave reviews. And so, Tanaz Aunty called me a week before to ask me what she could gift me for our housewarming. What did I ask for? Her Malido (along with the recipe, of course).
This version still takes an hour or so to make but is nowhere near as complicated. I’m ecstatic to finally have a Malido recipe that works! Do try making it at your place and share the results with me – I’d love to see how you get on.
- 300 gram ghee
- 50 gram broken cashews
- 50 gram slivered almonds
- 50 gram plain flour (maida)
- 50 gram wheat flour
- 50 gram coarse semolina
- 200 ml milk
- 300 gram sugar
- 150 ml water
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp cardamom-nutmeg powder
- In a wide bottomed pan, heat up the ghee until it has melted. Fry the almonds and cashews until golden brown and then set them aside.
- In a separate pot, mix together the sugar and water. Allow this mixture to cook until it forms a one-string sugar syrup. One string means that when you drop the syrup from your teaspoon, it creates a long string and coats the back of the spoon. Allow the syrup to cool.
- In a separate bowl, sift the semolina, plain flour and wheat flour together.
- Add the flours into the ghee and fry until the flours get a slightly brown colour and are no longer raw. Add in the milk and cook on low heat until it has all combined. Ensure you stir continuously through this process so that the flour does not form lumps.
- Now, add in the sugar syrup, vanilla extract and the cardamom-nutmeg powder. Cook this mixture until all the syrup is absorbed and the mixture starts to get thick. Remove from the flame and allow it to cool.
- When the malido mixture is cool enough so that you can touch it with your finger, break an egg into the mixture and stir vigorously. Put the mixture back onto a slow flame and once again start mixing until everything is combined and the ghee floats to the top.
- Add in 3/4 of the fried nuts that you had kept aside and mix well.
- Remove the malido from the heat and transfer into a serving bowl. Garnish it with the rest of the nuts. Serve warm.