rabri recipe | rabdi recipe | how to make rabri at home

Rabri recipe – A most delectable sweet shop style traditional rabri or rabri recipe with step-by-step pictures. What is rabri? Rabri or rabdi is a milk-based Indian sweet or dessert where thick milk cream layers (or lachchedar malai) are dunked in a thick & sweetened evaporated milk flavored with cardamom powder. Basically, only two ingredients are required for making a traditional sweet shop like rabri, i.e, milk, and sugar. Though cardamom powder is used to bring that exotic flavor to it. People says, rabri is traditionally connected with North India, but was originally invented in India’s royal era when milk or malai-based sweets were regularly made in the shahi kitchen.

Rabri is generally served by pairing with other Indian sweets like Malpua, Gulab jamun, Jalebi, Shahi Tukda, Falooda, Ghevar, or Imarti on special occasions in India. Though rabri is one of the most popular North Indian sweets. But it is also popular in other parts of India too, such as Benaras, Patna, and West Bengal. My today’s post is mainly about Kolkata’s most sensational Bengali rabri or rabdi recipe which I learned from my mom.

Rabri is served in earthen bowl

Rabri is easy to make homemade sweet only it is a little time-consuming and continuous effort is required from start to end while making the dish in traditional wat. Rabri or rabdi is very delicate, so we need to prepare it on a low flame with continuous stirring while making it at home. More heat can make these cream layers too hard and have a chance of getting burnt from the bottom.

Easy tricks of making rabri

Here, I’ve used the trick of waving a hand fan to form the thin layers of cream on top of the milk. As a result, with those thin layers of cream, sweet shop style perfect rabri or rabdi can be made at home. I came to know this trick from my mom. My mom says this is the common trick that all the Bengali confectioners follow while making this traditional sweet. And she collected this information during her childhood days. I kept it in my mind and applied it when I first made this sweet at home. Since then I’m following the same method while making this bengali rabri. Rabri is actually a recipe of sweet kheer or doodh er sor in our bengali language (not kheer in hindi).

Story of rabri from Gangpur, West Bengal

Did you ever hear about rabri gram(village) in Gangpur for making their best bengali rabri recipe in WestBengal? In this village, most of the villagers engaged themselves in making this sweet at home as their profession. For their traditional delicious sweet rabri, the original name of this village has been changed to rabri gram. You may visit that village to experience the wonderful making process of their rabdi. Their traditional homemade rabri is actually the best recipe of bengali lachchedar rabdi is very popular in Kolkata aka Paschim Bangla or West Bengal. And apart from cardamom powder, these bengali confectioners don’t use rose water and dry fruits in this milk or doodh based rabri or rabdi recipe and I’ve followed the same here. 

Two methods of making instant rabri

Do you know, except for the traditional rabri, rabdi can a made in an instant way? Instant rabri can be made with roti or phulka (Indian bread) and with store-bought bread. For making easy instant rabri, roti or phulka must tear into small pieces first. Then soak the pieces in little water for 4-5 mins and add them into the condensed milk added cardamom flavored thick milk and cook it for some time. In a Bengali television cooking show, Chef Rongon Neyogi once shared this instant roti rabdi he made to manage the shortage of rabri in a bengali marriage.

Even this instant rabri also can be made with store-bought bread too, then you must remove its brown-colored sides and then use a rolling pin to make it flat as we do the same for making bread malai roll. Then cut the flat bread into small pieces, soak it in little water then again press it down before putting it in thicken cardamom flavored milk and cook it for a while. This easy instant bread rabri or rabdi is perfect for quickly serving to your guests.

Make this traditional rabri at home and let me know your valuable feedback about this sweet dish by writing it down in the comment section below.

You may try other Indian sweet recipes from my website

How to make rabri at home with step by step pictures

Instructions

  • First, take a thick bottom deep and wide pan with 1 lit of milk(full-fat milk), and place it on medium flame. Bring it to a boil.
milk is in a thick bottom deep and wide pan, about to boil
  • When the milk froth started to rise up, a thick layer of cream or malai will be clearly visible on its surface.
a thick layer of malai or cream is rising up with the froth of milk
  • Then immediately slow down the heat to its minimum.
  • At that moment you can see the froth with cream or malai is moving towards one side of the pan. As shown in the pic.
milk cream or malai is going towards one side of the pan while slow down the heat
  • At this moment, by using a spatula gently take the cream and start to stick the layer of malai on the inner wall of the pan, as shown in the pic.
after gently taking the layer of cram or malai, sticking it on the inner wall of the pan to make this rabdi ki recipe
  • Stick the malai or milk cream layer all over the inner wall of the pan.
  • This means, try to cover (as much as possible) the whole wall of the pan by sticking the layer of the cream as shown in the pic.
covered the whole inner wall of the pan by sticking up the layer of cream or malai on it
  • This way we need to collect the thin layers of the cream and stick them to the side wall of the pan during the cooking process. As shown in the pic.
sticking the thin layer of cream or malai on the inner wall of the pan for making this shahi rabri recipe
  • Here, I’ve used my trick of using a hand fan (or even you can use a newspaper).
  • Hold the hand fan (or newspaper) as shown in the pic and start waving it over the surface of the milk. As shown in the pic.
using my trick of waving the hand fan over the surface of the milk for making this bengali rabri recipe
  • After every 3-4 times of waving the hand fan over the milk. And the thin layer of cream will form or appear immediately on the milk surface.
  • Then collect that thin cream layer from the milk and stick it to the side wall of the pan as before.
sticking the thin layer of cream which was quickly formed by waving the hand fan on the surface of the milk
  • Keep collecting the layers this way and keep sticking it all over(all over the inner wall or sides) the pan. As shown in the pic.
showing how using that trick, continuously collected and sticked up the layers of cream on the inner wall or side of the pan for making this indian sweet rabri
  • When the milk will reach 300-350 ml or 1/3 portion of its original quantity, then stop making the layers. 
milk reached to its one third portion or three hundred ml to three fifty ml quantity, now stop making more layers for this rabdi recipe
  • Then add 4-5 tbsp of sugar to the pan and mix it nicely with the milk remaining in the center of the pan.
sugar is added to the milk for making this rabri recipe at home
  • Stir the milk continuously to quickly melt down the sugar in it.
  • As we should not keep the thick cream layers in the pan for a long time, then the cream layers may get hard.
stirring the milk continuously for quickly melting down the sugar in it to prevent the solid layer of cream from getting hard, is the basic trick for making this rabdi recipe
  • After 1 or 2 mins, when tiny bubbles start appearing on the surface of the milk, immediately turn off the heat. 
tiny bubbles started appearing on the surface of the sugar mixed milk
  • For me, this whole process takes 1 hrs 10 mins on low heat.
  • Then add 1/4 tsp of cardamom powder to the milk and mix it nicely.
cardamom powder is added to the milk for making this homemade rabri
  • Remove the pan from the oven and keep it somewhere else, let it completely cool down.
removed the pan from the heat to completely cool it down
  • After some time when the milk totally cools down, then separate the layers of the cream from the side wall of the pan by using a spatula.
after cooling down the milk, separating the layers of the cream from the inner wall of the pan by using a spatula
  • As I’ve used a nonstick pan, the layer easily comes out of the pan, as shown in the pic.
the layer easily comes out of the non stick pan by the spatula
  • After removing all the layers from the sides of the pan, put it in the thick evaporated milk that remains in the center of the pan. As shown in the pic.
putting all the solid cream layer in the thick milk for making this bengali rabri gram like rabri recipe
  • Even scrape the sides of the pan if some small portion of that layer is left.
scraping the the sides of the pan for collecting the extra small portion of that layer which was left on the inner side of the pan
  • Now you should cut the solid cream layers into pieces. I personally prefer to cut the layers into small pieces. Even you can cut or break them into medium pieces too. 
cutting or braking the solid cream layers into small pieces by using the spalua for making this lachedar rabri recipe
  • Let’s soak the solid cream or malai layers (lachcha) into the thick evaporated milk. Cover the pan, and leave it for at least 2-3 hrs to get soft and sweet in taste.
soaking the layers into the thick evaporated milk for 2-3 hrs for finishing the recipe of rabri
  • After 2-3 hours sweet shop-style traditional rabri or rabdi will be ready.
  • Then you can put it in the refrigerator (in a steel tiffin box or in a food graded plastic container) for some time before serving.  
  • Serve this chilled sweet lachchedar rabdi by garnishing with some chopped almonds and pistachios from the top.

Recipe card of rabri

rabri recipe | rabdi recipe | how to make rabri at home

Recipe by Moumita PaulCourse: Sweet, DessertCuisine: North Indian, BengaliDifficulty: Moderate
Servings

6

servings
Prep time

5

minutes
Cooking time

50

minutes
Calories

300

kcal
Total time

55

minutes

Rabri or rabdi is a most delectable milk-based sweet where thick layers of milk cream (or lachchedar malai) are dunked in thick sweetened cardamom flavored evaporated milk. Popular in North Indian states, West Bengal (Kolkata) & Bangladesh. Served by pairing with other Indian sweets like Malpua, Gulab jamun, Jalebi, Shahi Tukda, Falooda, Ghevar, or Imarti on special occasions in India.

Ingredients

  • 1 lit full-fat milk

  • 4-5 tbsp sugar(add more or less as per taste)

  • 1/4 tsp cardamom powder

  • Equipment requires
  • Deep bottom pan

  • A hand fan

  • A spatula

Making of Rabri

  • Take a thick and deep bottom pan with 1 lit of full-fat milk, and place it on medium flame. Bring it to a boil.
  • When the milk froth started to rise up, a thick layer of cream or malai will be clearly visible on its surface.
  • Then immediately slow down the heat to its minimum.
  • At that moment you can see the froth with cream or malai is moving towards one side of the pan.
  • At this moment, by using a spatula gently take the cream and start to stick the layer of malai on the inner wall of the pan.
  • Stick the malai or milk cream layer all over the inner wall of the pan.
  • This means, try to cover (as much as possible) the whole wall of the pan by sticking the layer of the cream on it.
  • This way we need to collect the thin layers of the cream and stick them to the side wall of the pan during the cooking process.
  • As per my trick, I use a hand fan or newspaper and start waving it over the surface of the milk to get quick thin layers of malai (dudher sor).
  • After 3-4 times of waving the hand fan over the milk, the thin layers of cream or malai will easily form on the milk surface.
  • Collect that cream layer and stick it to the wall of the pan as before.
  • Keep collecting the layers in the same way and sticking them to the wall of the pan.
  • When the milk will reach 300-350 ml or 1/3 portion of its original quantity, then stop making the layers.
  • Add 4-5 tbsp of sugar to the remaining milk in the pan and mix it nicely with the milk and stir the milk continuously to quickly melt down the sugar.
  • After 1 or 2 mins, when tiny bubbles start appearing on its surface, immediately turn off the heat.
  • Add 1/4 tsp of cardamom powder to the milk and mix it nicely. Remove the pan from the oven, and let it completely cool down.
  • Separate the solid cream or malai layers from the innner wall of the pan by scraping the pan’s wall with a spatula.
  • Now you should cut the solid cream layers (lachchedar malai) into pieces. I personally prefer to cut the layers into small pieces. Even you can cut or break them into medium pieces too. 
  • Let’s soak the solid cream or malai layers (lachcha) into the thick evaporated milk, cover the pan and leave it for at least 2-3 hrs to get soft and sweet in taste.
  • After 2-3 hours sweet shop-style traditional rabri or rabdi will be ready.
  • Then you can put it in the refrigerator (in a steel tiffin box or in a food graded plastic container) for some time before serving.  
  • Serve this chilled sweet lachchedar rabdi by garnishing with some chopped almonds and pistachios from the top.

Important tips about this recipe

  • In the beginning, you may not be able to stick the layer all over the pan. Sometimes the layers will be slipped down from the side, but don’t be afraid of it, it happens to me too. It may take some more time but during this process, slowly you will be able to stick the malai on the pan.
  • Always maintain the heat, up to medium, and don’t leave it unattended once after starting the preparation.
  • Keep stirring the bottom of the pan along with making the cream layers, to avoid burning. Especially after adding the sugar to that thicken the milk, it should be more careful as sugar has a tendency to quickly stick to the bottom.
  • Never ever put the dried cream layers into the thickened milk when it is hot. Let the milk completely cool down, otherwise, the cream layers or lachche will be hard and chewy.
  • Let the dried cream layers soak the sugar-added milk to get it sweet in taste, as we don’t add sugar to the milk from the beginning. 
  • Minimum of 300 ml of milk should be left in the pan otherwise the layers will completely soak the milk and make it so dry. 
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