Eid is a time of celebration – not just the celebration of fasting for one month, but the celebration of food, family and togetherness. It is a time for rejoicing our religion and culture. What is so interesting about Ramazan and Eid is the fact that the festivities and food are so different in different Muslim countries. This goes to show that its such a celebration of ones identity and culture. In Pakistan every family has a version of Seviyan, sweet vermicelli cooked in sugar and milk, during Eid. You will find that nearly every family has their own version and special family recipes, but one thing is certain, it’ll always be seriously sweet and decadent!
(1) Ingredients:- Seviyan Zarda
50 grams of VemIcelli Noodles (Seviyan)
½ can Condensed Milk
2 tbsp. of Raisins (Kishmish) (optional)
1 tbsp. Clarified Butter (Ghee) or Butter
2 tbsp. of Nuts (Almonds & Pistachios) (optional)
2 Cardamom Pods (Ilaichi) (Seeds removed and powdered)
½ liter Whole Milk
Seviyan Sweet (Vermicelli Noodles)
1) Heat clarified butter or (normal butter) in a pan, fry the vermicelli until it turns light brown.
2) Boil milk in another pot.
3) When boiled, add condensed milk, vermicelli and cardamom powder.
3) Cook about 2 to 3 minutes or until it gets soft.
4) Finally top with raisins and nuts.
(2) Ingredients:- Qawami Seviyan
1 cup of broken dry seviyan (vermicelli)
3 cups of caster sugar
Enough ghee for frying and bhaghar (tempering) the spices and seviyan
About a litre of milk at hand, you will probably needs 2-3 cups
1/4 a cup of slivered almonds
1/4 cup of slivered pistachios
1/4 cup of sultanas
A pinch of saffron
sliver leaf or rose petals for decoration if desired – I also top the seviyan with khoya
Milk – warm or cold OR cream to serve
1. Begin by tempering the cardamon and cloves in ghee and then once the aroma develops fry the seviyan in the tempered ghee in a saucepan on medium heat. To ensure that the seviyan do not burn keep stirring until the seviyan turn a medium brown colour. You might have to keep moving the pan of the heat and stirring to make sure they don’t burn.
2. In another pan make a simple sugar syrup to a consistency where a single stream runs when you lift it with a spoon – ‘Eek taar’ or 1 steam consistency .
3. Add fried seviyan to the sugar syrup and mix.
4. Now add milk until the whole mixture is combined and thick. This has to be done by ‘andaza’ – estimation. I usually use 2-3 cups of milk, but you will need to try it yourself. You need to now keep this on low heat and cover until the milk is absorbed and the seviyan are cooked completely. This is where issues can start and at the bottom you will find a troubleshooting heading – please see below should you find that a)either the mixture is not cooked or b) the addition of milk leads to curdling. If you have no issues, then add saffron which has been soaked in hot milk for about 20 mins, to the seviyan.
5. Finish off the seviyan by pouring into a serving bowl and allowing to cool. Sprinkle with nuts and sultanas and decorate with silver leaf and/or rose petals. Refrigerate or leave outside until ready to serve.
6. Serve with fresh ice cold or warm milk or cream
Qawami seviyan can last in a freezer for months. Equally it can last pretty long in the fridge or even outside, covered. The sugar is a preservative and hence it does last pretty long!
By the way this is great for breakfast!
a) Milk has absorbed but seviyan are still raw: I would add a bit more milk, then put the pan on an extremely low heat and cover and allow to cook within it’s steam – which is called ‘dam’. Cook for about 30 mins, this should do it.
b) If milk curdles when added to seviyan: This might look wrong but it actually helps in cooking to seviyan faster as well is it’s not going to taste bad. The water let out of the milk actually will allow the seviyan to cook well. Cook on low heat, slightly uncovered.
Seviyan Zarda is Ready. It’s time to enjoy!