Thursday, August 13, 2009

Sitaphal Basundi for Nagapanchami

On Nagapanchami Day my new SIL, Sapna called to ask me how to celebrate it. That took me back to my childhood when Mom and Dad argued about the relevance of this festival. I remember that most festivals for us meant Mom churning out yummy dishes that's all.

So that is what I told Sapna too. If you are able to find a snake and give it milk fine else just make some yummy food and the guys at home will be happy. I did just that here in Blr.

Last time when I was in Mumbai I had tasted the Sitaphal Basundi and I flipped instantly. This was an occassion for milk based sweets so it had to be made at home.

Sitaphal is Indian for custard apple for those who don't know. A berry so rich and creamy that it is ticked off by dietitians. If they read what I made here they might cringe. A double dose of creaminess. The Basundi and the custard apple, pure indulgence of the serious kind.

You will need:


2 Extra ripe Custard apples/ Sitaphal
1 litre of milk
1 cup sugar

Step 1: Make the basundi.
Boil and reduce the 1 litre of milk with sugar added, till you get a creamy thickness that coats the spoon. I reduced to 1/4 litre. Stop there. Cool completely. Chill for 2 hrs.

Step 2: Clean the Custard apples and deseed.
Use only extra ripe custard apples for this recipe. It lends the fragrance and the rich creamy texture to the desert. Carefully remove the thick skin to leave you with a white ball. Now first wash your hands and under-nails diligently as you will be handling the pulp. Then in a bowl take the custard apples and whip vigorously to separate the seeds from the pulp. Do not use a electrical equipment as it might break the seeds. With your fingers pick out all the seeds. Mash the pulp a bit but mostly leave the segments in place.

Step 3:
Mix together the Basundi and the Custard apple pulp. The segments impart a certain lusciousness so leave them in just like that, do not puree. Always add the fruit just before serving to enjoy the fresh fragrance. Chilling destroys it. When I use fruits as flavorings I avoid use of fragrant spices like cardamom, cinnamon or nutmeg that are so common to Indian deserts.

Serve in small bowls for it has to be enjoyed in limits.

All white is not an impressive color for a desert to be posted on a blog. Yet try a spoonful and you will swoon.


  1. Ooh I miss Sitaphal !! Felt like dipping a puri in your basundi and eating the whole thing :)

    Btw cried thru your post about your Aai. Please take care of yourself...Hugs!

  2. Ah anjali I am fallen for this. Have heard about it but loved to see the recipe here. I love custard apples and those which beak when ripe are the creamiest. When we lived in Tiruthani we used have load of them. Those fruits used to be pretty large too.


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