Anyone familiar with Indian sweets will have tasted barfi. But what about blackberry barfi? Cornish blackberries meet exotic India in this sweet fusion fest. There’s also coconut and subtle hints of rose.
To me, food in London means two things and takes me straight back to my student days. Firstly, high end treats for special occasions like birthdays and graduation. I remember the excitement of tea at the Ritz and tea at the Grosvenor. Not something a girl from a remote Cornish village had ever experienced before.
Secondly and much more frequently, I made use of the abundance of good cheap Indian eats in and around the back of Euston Station. This may account for my occasional lateness to lectures. It was here I was introduced to Indian sweets and was smitten by their exotic flavours. So when Fiona of London Unattached set this month’s Best of British challenge as “what does London food mean to you”, Indian sweets were the first thing that sprang to mind.
Blackberry, Rose and Coconut Barfi
I was dying to have a go at making some Indian sweets after receiving Indian-Inspired Desserts by Roopa Rawal. Watch this space for a forthcoming exciting giveaway. So leafing through the book, it was just a matter of picking which one. Because I still have some rose syrup left, the coconut and rose barfi caught my eye.
That was the one I wanted to start with, but with the addition of some fruit to offset the sweetness a little and to give some natural colour. Hmmm, what’s in season? Well it’s been a while since I last got scratched arms and purple stained fingers, but blackberries it had to be. I managed to pick a tub full from the hedgerows and made my way back home with glee.
One word of warning, this blackberry barfi takes quite a bit of time to make. It also requires a lot of stirring. You’ll also need to use your judgement as to when it’s ready, but that’s not as difficult as it may sound. I managed it without any difficulty, though I did cross my fingers and hope it would set.
Bingo, after a few hours it had well and truly set. Indeed, I was thrilled with the result; my blackberry barfi tasted like a true Indian sweet, despite the fact that blackberries may never have been used before. The texture was perfect too.
The blackberry flavour was very much present and the rose though subtle, did not go unnoticed. The chocolate drizzle added another flavour dimension and helped counteract the sweetness. Having said that, they weren’t as sweet as I had imagined they would be. They featured at a dinner party I recently held for friends and were well received.
Other Recipes for Indian Sweets You Might Like
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Thanks for visiting Tin and Thyme. If you make this blackberry, rose and coconut barfi, I’d love to hear about it in the comments below. Do share photos on social media too and use the hashtag #tinandthyme, so I can spot them.
Blackberry Barfi. PIN IT.
Blackberry Barfi – The Recipe
Blackberry Barfi with Coconut and Rose
- 300 g blackberries
- 387 g tin of condensed milk
- 4 tbsp rose syrup
- 200 g milk powder
- 40 g desiccated coconut
- 30 g dark chocolate for drizzling - optional (I used Green & Black's Cook's 72%)
- Puree the blackberries with a jug or stick blender and rub through a sieve to extract as much of the juice as possible. Place the sieve directly over a medium heavy based saucepan to minimise washing up.
- Add the condensed milk and warm it up on a low heat, stirring all the while.
- Add the rose syrup.
- Increase the heat a little and add the milk powder. Whisk until any lumps that have formed, disappear.
- Add the desiccated coconut and continue to stir.
- Cook for about an hour, stirring every few minutes until the mixture looks fairly dry and as though it might be thick enough to set.
- Spoon into a 2 lb loaf tin lined with baking paper and smooth down with the back of a spoon.
- Leave for at least a couple of hours to set.
- If you opt for the chocolate drizzle, melt the chocolate in a bowl suspended over hot, but not boiling, water.
- Turn the barfi out onto a board.
- Drizzle the chocolate over the barfi with a teaspoon.
- Cut into 32 squares.
Best of British is a monthly challenge showcasing the best of what British food has to offer in various counties or regions around the UK. The challenge is sponsored by The Face of New World Appliances. They are offering a £50 Amazon voucher prize to give to a winning entry each month. Here are the previous regional entries: Cornwall, Scotland, Yorkshire.
As I used freshly picked blackberries, I’m entering my Indian sweets into Simple & In Season. This is a monthly blogging event created by Ren of Fabulicious Food and is this month hosted by Katie Bryson of Feeding Boys and a Firefighter.
I’m also submitting my blackberry barfi to Javelin Warrior’s Made with Love Mondays. This is a challenge which embraces the whole concept of cooking from scratch.