Shahi Tukda

Special day of lovely bond of brothers and sisters is approaching. Yes! Rakshabandhan is approaching and this year this festival is bit different due to Corona outbreak. But let this Epidemic not destroy and disturb the sweetness of this festival of love and care of brother and sister.

Celebrate this day and spread the sweetness with homemade special sweet/ Dessert SHAHI TUKDA.


Shahi Tukda is a classic Royal Dessert originated during Mughal era.

Basically Shahi Tukda is a rich Indian bread pudding/ sweet dish made with bread, ghee, milk, sugar and nuts. Preparation of Shahi Tukda includes deep fried bread with thickened sweetened milk with lots of nuts and saffron.

Literally Shahi Tukda means “Royal piece of Dessert”.


For pan frying bread

  • 6-8 slices of bread – white / brown or whole wheat/ milk bread
  • 2 tablespoon ghee (clarified butter) – 1 tablespoon for frying each batch of bread, add more if required

For sugar syrup

  • ½ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup water
  • 3-4 green cardamoms – powdered

For Rabri

  • 1 litre full cream/fat whole milk
  • 2 –3 tablespoon sugar or as required
  • 3-4 tablespoon milk powder (optional)
  • ¼ teaspoon cardamom powder
  • 1 teaspoon kewra water (pandanus water)
  • A pinch of saffron strands or saffron powder

For Garnishing

  • 12 to 15 almonds – blanched and sliced
  • 10 to 12 pistachios – blanched and sliced

How to make Shahi Tukda

Making Rabri for shahi tukda

  • In a broad thick bottomed pan or kadai take 1 litre of full fat whole milk and bring its first boil.
  • Then add milk powder . The addition of milk powder reduces the cooking time of rabri. Milk powder is not essential and if you don’t have then also its fine. Just that you will have to simmer the milk for some more minutes.
  • Add a pinch of crushed saffron and 1/4 tsp cardamom powder.
  • Remove the clotted cream/malai which forms on top of the milk and add it back to the milk. Also keep on scraping the dried milk from the sides and add them back to the milk.
  • Keep stirring and scraping often so that the milk does not get browned or burnt from the bottom as well as the sides.
  • Continue simmering, stirring, removing the clotted cream and scraping for another 10 minutes.
  • Switch off when the milk has reduced and become thickened.
  • Now add sugar. Stir well so that the sugar dissolves.
  • Next add crushed saffron or saffron powder along with kewra water (pandanus water). Skip this step, if you have added saffron before. You can also add sliced almonds and pistachios.
  • It will take about 45 minutes to 1 hour for the milk to thicken on a low flame.

Blanching dry fruits

Meanwhile you start preparing rabri blanch dry fruits.

  • First heat a cup of water till it begins to boil in a microwave or stove top or electric heater.
  • Add the pistachios and almonds to the hot water.
  • Cover and keep aside for 30 mins. Then peel both and slice them. Keep aside.

Pan frying the bread slices

Basically for Shahi Tukda bread is deep fried but for healthier version I opt to pan fry.

  • Slice the crusts of the bread. Cut them into squares, rectangles or triangles.
  • Heat 1 tbsp of ghee in a flat pan, tava or frying pan.
  • Place the bread slices and toast them on a low to medium heat.
  • When one side is browned, flip and toast the other side.
  • Flip once or twice more to get an even golden color and browning.
  • Drain the bread slices on paper towels.
  • Add 1 tbsp ghee again and toast the remaining batch. Keep all the toasted bread aside.

Making Sugar syrup for Shahi Tukda

  • Mix 1/2 cup of sugar with 1/4 cup water in a pan.
  • Keep the sugar solution on a low heat.
  • The mixture would start to come to a boil.
  • Cook till you get a one thread consistency in the sugar syrup.
  • Switch off the flame, when one thread consistency is reached, add cardamom powder and stir.
  • In case the syrup cools and crystallizes before you soak the bread in it, then just add about 1 to 1.5 tbsp water and reheat the syrup.

Making Shahi Tukda

  • Dip the bread slices in the sugar syrup. With the help of a spoon or small tongs, coat the bread slices evenly with the sugar syrup. If this is difficult for you, then just pour the sugar syrup evenly on a neatly arranged bed of bread slices.
  • Arrange the sugar syrup soaked bread slices neatly in a serving tray or plate.
  • Pour the rabri on the sugar syrup coated bread slices.
  • Garnish with sliced blanched almonds and pistachios.
  • Serve the rich royal shahi tukda.

Recipe notes:

  • Substitute Kewda with Rose water or essence as per desired flavour.
  • Fry bread with ghee. This adds on to the flavour.
  • Although traditional method for making rabri is the most authentic but shortcuts can be done with condensed milk.
  • To make rabri fast, use ground almonds and some makhana.

Enjoy this sweet festival of Rakshabandhan with your dear ones, stay home, stay healthy and happy……Happy Rakshabhandhan 🙂