Santra Basundi/ Tangerine Kheer

November 15, 2012mayurisjikoni
Blog post


Santra Basundi is a spin on the traditional basundi recipe where fresh tangerine or santra is added to the cooled mixture. Makes it a delicious mithai or sweet to enjoy during the festivals.

What is Basundi?

Basundi is a sweet thickened milk which is generally flavored with cardamom, nutmeg and sometimes saffron. Chopped nuts usually like almonds, cashew nuts, pistachios and charoli are added. In fact, this sweetened milk is quite popular in the western states of India. I always thought that is a Gujarati dish but it is popular in Maharashtra and in some parts of Karnataka.

Traditionally, full fat milk was boiled with sugar till it became thick and creamy. These days we tend to added milk solids – mawa or khoya or condensed milk to hasten the process. Nowadays to make it even more exotic, fresh fruits are added. Santra Basundi/ Tangerine Kheer is one such example.

What is Santra Basundi/ Tangerine Kheer?

Basundi is prepared like the traditional style and then peeled tangerine or santra bits are added to the slightly cold or chilled basundi. In fact one can add fresh fruit of their choice. While I leave the softer fruits like mango, banana, chikoo for other desserts, I like to add apples, strawberries, grapes, pomegranate to basundi.


Santra Basundi was the sweet dish served to guests during my Wedding. Aug 1982 a coup d’état attempt failed in Kenya, As a result, many restrictions were enforced which included no night weddings. Mine was a day time wedding. The previous night my brothers and their friends were busy decorating the mandap.

And my eldest brother were busy getting full fat creamy milk by the gallons from Kigwa Farm, Nairobi. Some women from our Patel community were busy along with my family members, making the basundi overnight, stirring the milk continuously. Younger members were busy peeling tangerine and separating the pulp from the skin.

Back then there were no fancy caterers to cook wedding food. It was very much a community affair where everyone got together to help. Do I remember how the santra basundi tasted? Well, no as I was just too emotional that I was leaving my family to go away to a another town and start my life with strangers.  Mine was an arranged marriage, so barely knew my hubby and his family back then.

200th Post

This is My 200th post since I began the blog. I’m pretty pleased as I really didn’t think that I would continue. Since the 200th recipe has fallen around the Diwali period, I have chosen to share my Santra Basundi recipe with you. I have no idea why we traditionally make doodh pak during Kalichaudas day, but I follow the tradition. So instead of doodh pak I decided to make Santra Basundi/ Tangerine Kheer. Warm basundi goes so well with nice soft fluffy poori. Not that the chilled one stops my family from dunking poori in it!


Can you serve Basundi without fruit?

Yes, most certainly you can. Add cardamom, nutmeg, saffron if you wish and chopped nuts. Try and add charoli or chironji if you have any.

Traditional Method of Making Basundi

As I mentioned above, full fat milk was stirred continuously till it became thick. Basundi consistency is thick, creamy and pourable unlike rabdi which is very thick and not pourable. Milk and sugar are simmered over heat and stirred till its thick. The trick that the community women used to know if the basundi is ready is dip a spoon in the milk mixture. If it coats the back of the spoon then it it ready.

The solid milk that forms around the edges is constantly scrapped with a metal scrapper, spatula or a spoon and added to the simmering milk. The secret to a lovely creamy consistency which takes on the light buttery yellow hue is all due to the quality of milk used. It has to be full fat milk.


Modern Time Basundi

To quicken the whole process, these days sweetened condensed milk or solid milk – mawa or khoya is added. This reduces the stirring time, saves on gas or power and time too.

What Fruits Can be added to Basundi?

Actually most fruits like grapes, pomegranate, apple, pears, berries, etc. Can also add mangoes, custard apple, chikoo, etc.

Some more Milk Desserts or Sweets you may want to check out

Milk Pudding with Jelly – an easy to make delicious pudding

Apple Kheer – a delicious different kind of kheer using apples

Red Rice Kheer – using red rice and jaggery

Carrot Coconut Kheer – not only is the colour of this dessert appealing but also the flavors

Makhana and Dry Fruit Kheer – Fox nut is used to make this kheer

Amaranth Fruity Pudding – amaranth seeds are used to make this pudding

Fruit & Nut Rice Kheer – a little different from the traditional kheer

Samo/ Moriyo Kheer – a pudding using barnyard millet

Sabudana Kheer – a milk pudding using tapioca pearls

Paal Kozhukattai – rice dumplings cooked in milk

Kesar Rasgulla – paneer balls cooked in sugar syrup

Thandai Kulfi – Thandai spice blend is added to a traditional kulfi recipe

Quick Kulfi Recipe – no wasting time in boiling the milk till its reduced

Thandai Chia Pudding – healthy, filling and delicious

Kesar Badam Pista Kulfi – made using khoya/ mawa


Ingredients required for Basundi

  • Full Fat Milk – highly recommend using full fat milk for best results
  • Sugar – refined sugar
  • Mawa – also known as khoya or solid milk.
  • Sweetened Condensed Milk – if you don’t get mawa
  • Tangerine – remove the segments from the skin or membrane. Also remove all the seeds.
  • Saffron – kesar, a few strands
  • Cardamom Powder – elachi
  • Nutmeg Powder – jaiphal
  • Almond Flakes or Slivers – or can chop them roughly
  • Pistachio Flakes or Slivers – or chop them



basundi 4


Santra Basundi/ Tangerine Kheer is a creamy, sweet, thickened milk dessert. Its a popular Gujarati Sweet served along with the main meal.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 25 minutes
Course Dessert, Indian Sweet
Cuisine Gujarati
Servings 4


  • 1 litre full fat milk
  • 4 tbsp sugar reduce amount if using condensed milk
  • 4 tbsp grated mawa or condensed milk
  • 1 cup tangerine segments with the membrane, seeds and white part removed
  • ¼ tsp saffron
  • ½ tsp cardamom powder
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg powder
  • 2 tbsp almond flakes
  • 1 tbsp pistachio flakes


  • Put the milk in a deep saucepan and bring it to a boil. Reduce the heat and let it simmer till its nearly half the quantity. Remember to stir it frequently.
  • This will take about 15-20 minutes. At this stage the milk will appear creamish in colour.
  • Add the sugar and mawa or condensed milk. Simmer for a further 5 minutes.
  • Let the mixture cool down a bit. Whisk it with a hand blender to make it into a smooth mixture.
  • Add saffron, cardamom and nutmeg powder. Mix and let it become cold.
  • Add the tangerine segments.
  • Put the basundi in the fridge for 1 to 2 hours.
  • Decorate with the almond and pistachio flakes and serve.


  • If you are using sweet condensed milk, reduce the amount of sugar you use.
  • For a much creamier consistency add ½ cup fresh cream when the basundi is cold.
  • Instead of tangerine, add pomegranate, grapes or berries.
  • I prefer using a non stick pan for kheers. The milk does not get burnt easily.
Keyword Santra Basundi Recipe

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If you do try this recipe then please either

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  • Nivedhanams Sowmya

    November 7, 2013 at 8:12 am

    oh that is so new to me.. looks so soothing and delicious!!! Thanks for sending this yummy recipe to my event.. Looking for more yummy recipes…


  • Ruxana Gafoor

    October 14, 2014 at 5:51 am

    yummy and delicious kheer…Hi 1st time here,happy to follow visit my blog when you are free 🙂

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