Zarda Pulao

Farrukh Shadab
Farrukh Shadab|
Last updated on Jan 9th
Zarda Pulao is a delicious sweet pilaff favoured with saffron, dry fruit nuts and aromatic spices. Zarda pulao is traditional sweet dish from north India which are served during festivals and weddings. Zarda Pulao is very popular dessert in Pakistan and Bangladesh also. Zarda actually mean “Yellow” in Urdu and This sweet pulao is yellow in colour, hence its called Zarda pulao.
  • Prep Time10Minutes
  • Cooking Time25Minutes
  • Serves4people

Recipe Ingredients

  • 2 cups long grain basmati rice soaked for an hour
  • 1&1/2 cup sugar
  • A generous pinch of saffron soaked
  • in 1/4 cup of water atleast for few hours
  • 1&1/2 tablespoon, Charoli nuts (chiraunji)
  • 1/4 cup, cashews, broken
  • 1/4 cup, raisins
  • 3 tablespoon, dried coconut, sliced or chopped
  • 4-5 green cardamom
  • 4-5 cloves
  • 1&1/2 inch size cinnamon stick
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4-5 tablespoon, ghee/unsalted butter
  • 100 gms, khowa/mawa ( grated)
  • 1 teaspoon, orange zest
  • ( a must, cannot be skipped)
  • 1 teaspoon, lemon juice
  • A very small pinch of yellow food colour
  • Enough water for cooking rice

Recipe Preparation

  1. In a heavy bottom pan, bring enough water to boil. Add soaked rice, cardamom, cloves, cinnamon and bay leaf.
  2. Cook until rice is just 80% done. Please do not cook it beyond 80%. Strain the rice boiled rice, spread it on the plate and keep it aside for few minutes. Do not discard whole spices.
  3. n another heavy bottom pan, heat ghee or butter Add coconut, cashews, charoli nuts and raisins, few until they are light golden brown. Do not burn them.
  4. Add sugar, orange zest and saffron water. Cook until sugar melts well. Add lemon juice and mix. Allow it to boil for 1-2 minutes.
  5. Add rice and gently mix and make sure that all the rice coats well with sugar-saffron mixture. Cook for a minute.
  6. Sprinkle khowa all over the rice, cover the pan with tight lid and simmer (Dum) on very low flame for 15 minutes.
  7. Once done, gently fluff up the rice with fork. Serve warm.
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