Saffron, Almond And Raisin Semolina Halva (Sheera) + An Announcement + A giveaway

Saffron, Almond And Raisin Semolina Halva (Sheera) + An Announcement + A giveaway

Today, apart from this recipe, I have BIG news to share. Looking back, I started this website/blog in December 2008 when I was seven months pregnant with my son, Hari.

At that point in time, I needed a medium for publishing my recipes with the accompanying pictures and stories forming the connecting link. Creating and maintaining a website is a lot of work and it took me a while to find the right graphic designer and website developer to work with. There is a serious dearth of people in this area and only after I found Abhijit, who is now a dear friend as well,  did take off!

All the efforts put in seemed worthwhile, when thousands of visits, acknowledgements, comments and a lot of love started pouring in from across the globe. And soon after, took off, leading to press attention, festival and workshop invitations, a T.V. debut and commissions from magazines, BBC Good Food India being one amongst them.

Television and other assignments started pouring in as well and I was in a state where in I was finding it difficult to choose the right path. In the latter part of 2014, I received a mail inviting me to partner with one of India's leading digital studio.

Many of you have written to me asking me for videos of my recipes. I have been working hard with the wonderful guys at Rajshri Food and I'm very happy to announce that my show titled "Divine Taste With Anushruti" is all set to go live tomorrow. You can watch the promo to my show below.

Through this website, I have been able to reach out to thousands of people from across the world. And my recipes have been recreated in homes and professional kitchens; by college students and home-makers, for special occasions and in everyday cooking as well. Through this show, I invite all of you to come into my kitchen, where I will showcase much loved recipes from my site as well as new exciting ones, keeping the core principles of my cooking intact. In short, you will get to see me, my kitchen and my food live in action.

And coming to my halva, I must share with you that there are innumerable ways in which I make halva. With different kinds of nuts and dried fruit, different kinds of spices, plain, with different kinds of sweeteners, with very little fat or with loads of ghee in it.

At times, when I want a warm and comforting dish, I just make a plain halva with toasted semolina, with very little ghee and cardamom powder.

But, whenever there is a festive occasion or a treat to be made, I tread the entire path and add lots of luscious ghee in it. The ghee makes it rich, aromatic, comforting and gives it a regal touch.

Also known as sheera or rava kesari, this exotic delicacy is rich and filled with warm and comforting flavours.

If you want to go the traditional way of preparing this dish, then I would suggest not to skimp on the ghee.

And to celebrate my foray into the digital video space, the good guys at Coppre have decided to do a give away for the readers of Coppre is a social venture that sells handcrafted artisanal copper and metalware and does a phenomenal job of preserving a heritage craft. They ship throughout India and internationally as well. To know more, please visit their website and their facebook page

Here are the pointers to the giveaway!

  1. The giveaway includes

a. 2 copper dessert bowls (katories) 

Material is hand-beaten copper, silver plated (in 99% silver, 10 microns thickness) from the inside only.

b.2 dessert spoons

Material is hand-beaten stainless steel, with copper plated handles.

The total cost of the bowls and spoons is:

Silvered Copper Katori:  Rs 2,700/ for 2

Dessert Spoons:  240/ for 2

Total  Rs 2,940/ for the set.

  1. The giveaway is open to residents of India only. Sorry about this 🙁
  1. You have to tell us which Divine Taste dessert you would like to serve in these bowls.
  1. You can leave a comment on the Divine Taste facebook page and tag Coppre.
  1. You can also leave a comment on the Divine Taste website to increase your chances of winning.
  1. The contest is open till the 28th of February, after which the winner will be announced. So, keep the comments coming!

And last but not the least, I hope you will continue to support me and inspire me as you have been doing all these years! I say this, overcome with emotions that I wouldn't have come this far, without your support and enthusiasm, my dear readers! See you soon!

Saffron, Almond And Raisin Semolina Halva (Sheera) Recipe

You can use cashews instead of almonds as well 

1 cup= 250 ml


50 gm (1/4 cup) almonds, soaked overnight or in hot water for 30 minutes, peeled and slit lengthwise

1 tsp or 20 green cardamom pods with the seeds ground to give 1 tsp

½ tsp saffron strands soaked in 1 tbsp hot milk

250 ml (1 cup) milk

375 ml (1 ½ cups) water

200 gm (1 cup) ghee

175 gm (1 cup) rava or semolina

220 gm (1 cup) sugar

50 gm (1/4 cup) raisins or sultanas


Before you begin with the recipe, prepare the almonds, cardamom seeds and saffron and keep aside.

In a saucepan, combine the water and the milk. Crush the saffron lightly and put the saffron strands into the saucepan and bring to a boil. Once, it begins to boil, lower the heat.

While the water and the milk is heating, put the ghee into a kadhai and allow it to melt. Once the ghee melts, lower the heat, put in the semolina and roast on low heat for about 15 to 20 minutes, until the semolina grains acquire a tan colour and turn aromatic.

Once the semolina grains release a lovely toasted aroma, pour the hot saffron milk into the semolina. It will splatter and splash, so move away from the pan a bit, while doing this. If you are doing this for the first time, you might want to take the pan off the heat while mixing the milk into the semolina.

Keep stirring until the liquid is absorbed by the semolina, at the same time making sure that it is not dry. Now stir in the sugar and the cardamom powder, stir well and cook until the sugar melts. Cover and cook for about 5 minutes until all the flavours are absorbed into the semolina grains.

After 5 minutes, remove the pan and allow to steam for a few minutes more.

Serve hot or warm.

Serve 4

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84 thoughts on “Saffron, Almond And Raisin Semolina Halva (Sheera) + An Announcement + A giveaway

  1. Congratulations Anu! I saw the promo yesterday and I am eagerly waiting to watch you make your lovely dishes which have become an integral part of my kitchen! I'm waiting to learn more and more from you! I can't tell you how excited I am:)) I am very happy for you, Anu! You deserve the best! You're an incredibly creative person and your never fail recipes have helped me on so many occasions!
    Thanks a bunch and keep going!!

  2. looks truly divine. Best wishes on your new venture.
    would love to serve komola kheer and ashgourd halva in these bowls.

  3. Lovely post..i am so tempted to make this halwa though I am TRYING to control my diet. I have made sooji halwa a lot of times but never with saffron. And the texture of your halwa looks amazing.
    I would serve your delectable carrot halwa in these coppre bowls

  4. Wow! This is wonderful! Congrats Anu! Wish you lots and lots of success in this new project. I'm sure you'll do great, as always 🙂

  5. Hi Anushruti, I would like to serve ash gourd halva in the Coppre dessert bowls. I love your posts and have tried all the recipes. Thank you for posting such wonderful recipes.

  6. I have eyeing some katoris for a while!! Thank you .I am a regular reader of your blog, i really liked the baby food series.
    I would serve the Mung Dal payasam in these beautiful copper katoris 🙂

    Good job on the programme!

  7. This sheera looks amazing in those copper bowls… it looks amazing! Such a lovely giveaway… and congrats on ur new appearance, all the very best!

  8. Hearty congratulations!

    Your sheera looks best in these but it has to be the Gingered Mango Yogurt With Pomegranate for me 🙂

  9. I was looking for a recipe for Kashi Halwa (Ash gourd) and that is when i came across your site. Your website is definitely a work of art and the recipes are amazing too. I am glad you are on FB which helps us follow the developments to your site more easily.

    I had seen such copper bowls in a Pune restaurant 4 years back and am definitely hoping to get them. I would love to have the Kashi Halwa in those bowls…:)

  10. I have been following your blog for over a year now and have always enjoyed reading and cooking from it. And in these amazing copper bowls, all I can think of having is your lentil payasam. All the best as you undertake future and exciting ventures.

  11. Hi Anushruthi.. First of all congratulations on your show..What is the measure of sugar to be added? I guess it's missing in the post.. All the best..

  12. Rice Kheer your first recipe and Langarwali Dal are the 2 recipes that would look GR8! in those copper bowls.

  13. Dear anushruthi
    congratulations on your new venture. I have been trying your baking recipes and the results are always good and liked by everyone at home.I am looking forward to your videos on rajshri food channel.My best wishes to you.

  14. hi anu !:)
    congratulations…on the success of ur blog n for ur new venture..
    i have been visiting ur blog from long time. And have learnt many dishes from here .My kids favourite is the easy mango pudding…and eggless chocolate cupcakes ,(which i prepare often).
    these bowls r really cute ….i would definitely serve the MANGO PUDDING if i were choosen for these coppre sets…and definetly would garnish it with some saffron as it gives a delicious flavor..n my kids r very excited when they see mango….but d sheera is surely giving the bowls a perfect look…
    once again congratulations n all d best for future.

  15. Those Coppre bowls brought me here like a magnet!

    Congratulations to you, Anu!!

    The recipe looks delicious. And so is your website – truly divine taste

    What would I serve in the bowls? First, I'd make "chakkra-pongal" – sweet rice just like my Grandmother used to – and then serve it to my two most favorite people in the world. Those bowls remind me so much of my Grandmother's utensils!

    I've bookmarked your page. 🙂 I know I'll be coming back!

  16. Oh this is fabulous …. Congratulations on taking ur cookibg to next level… After the promo I m waiting for the show now….great jib and all the best for thus bew venture… And sheera looks yummy and delicious and defiitely have to try it….

  17. Dear Anushruti,

    Heartiest Congratulations to you on your new venture. Your site is truly divine and I have tried almost all the recipes from it, especially all the cakes which had given me rave compliments. Each time someone appreciates me for the food made with the help of you/your site 🙂 I thank you so much. Wish you all the best and would love to see you in action cooking and baking.

    With best wishes from the bottom of my heart,

  18. Hi Anushruti,

    Missed on the katori part. I would love to serve Kheer and carrot halwa in the copper katoris.Thank you.

    Best wishes once again.

  19. Congratulations! I have been following you blog for a while now and am tremendously inspired.
    I would love to serve some kheer in those pretty bowls.

  20. Hi Anu, Congrats and all the best for your new innings ! These bowls are absolutely gorgeous. I think just about anything served in these bowls would look and taste good but if I had to absolutely pick one thing it would be kasi halwa….royal dessert served the royal way !

    Eagerly waiting to see your every Wednesday on rajshri foods ! 🙂

  21. For the #Giveaway – This is Simran, from Ovenderful…Of all the amazing dessert recipes you have the one I would like to serve in Coppre​ dessert bowls is the Ash Gourd (White Pumpkin) Halva – the intensely rich colour and translucent texture of this dessert will be further enhanced within the earthiness of these bowls.

  22. Hi Anushruti – You are beautiful indeed both in looks n mind, one of my favourite personalities! Congratulations on coming this far and all the best for all that is in store for you. Being a vegan, I follow your recipes and it has been a success with my family. Coming to the Katoris – I would love to serve 'Baby corn Broccoli n soya chunk curry' and also 'Vrindavan style lauki chana dal' in them!
    Lots of love filled with THANKYOU!

  23. Anu, divine taste has always been my one stop hunting ground when it comes to making indian sweets. Your assortment of laddoos are divine but the one recipe I always come back to is ' parp payasam' or lentil payasam. It's very close to my heart , as a personal favourite….it's one of the recipes I make for myself….a rare treat….warm and comforting…cos the only person who makes it for me is my favourite Chemma….my mums younger sister. It finds a definite place in my Onam and Vishu sadyas….it's soul food! And in those pretty bowls…with the copper contrasting the warm ochre hue of the payasam….treat for visual senses as well

    Good luck on the show!!!

  24. Hi Anushruti ,as always beautiful post and pictures ,while reading the post was wondering from where did you get the beautiful hammered tableware from but thankfully you have organised a giveaway for the same.
    As for your question I would love to serve the Ash gourd halva in this.
    Awaiting for your video recipes.

  25. Hi Anu,

    Congrats and all the best !!. Have fun in your work, its good to hear that we shall await the visual treat hereon through tv too !.

    One thing that hooks me on to your website is the photography and the way you pen down. The first recipe that i came across is ashgourd halwa. It is so so tempting everytime i look at the pictures. A very good post that made me look into your website again and again for desserts esp. So my wish would be to serve ashgourd halwa in those rich copper bowls.

    Even if i dont win those cups i wud be more than happy if you share a cup of ashgourd halwa with me!!. An adorable work.

  26. Awesome! Wonderful news Anushruti!

    I would like to serve sheera in this as my kids simply love the dish

  27. Hi Anushruti, I am a silent follower of your blog. Today i broke my silence because one thing is worrying me, I hope you dont stop writing on this blog. It is nice to see you in action but I very much like your photography and emotions you connect with your every recepi. So please also continue to upload your memories and recepies here. Congratulations and Best wishes for the new venture. I would definately like to have those bowls to serve asshground halwa to my Krishna Balram deties.

  28. Indulekha: I'm really touched with your words. I have no idea how to express what I'm feeling right now! I assure you that my posts in divinetaste will not stop and I will continue to write here. This space defines so many vital aspects of my being and the person I am today, so I will never let go of this space here.

  29. Hi Anushruti,

    Congrats on your new journey! I've been a regular visitor to your website since the last couple of years and you're now a household name in our family! My kids totally love your pics and literally drool over the computer screen 🙂 Your focaccia and chocolate cake make almost a bi-weekly appearance here! Just taking his occasion to convey our collective big THANK YOU to you and wishing you the very best of luck with all your new endeavours!

    I would love to serve the butterscotch pudding or the gingered mango pudding with pomegranate in these lovely copper katoris!

  30. Congratulations Anushruti. I am so happy that you are making your videos now But please dont forget to write. I love your pictures. BTW i was so happy to see Srila Prabhupada's picture in your kitchen. Now i know the secret of DIVINE TASTE 🙂 Hare Krsna

  31. Hello anushruti ma'am, I have been following your blog from a year. I have tried the chocolate chip banana bread loaf twice and the chocolate strawberry cake three or four times atleast… I am just going to pass out of school and my interest in cooking has almost bordered on to obsession with it.. So naturally I find your blog really interesting and you have a really unique style of writing.. I appreciate that you have created an array of various dishes which are vegetarian yet so tasty. I have grown up in a punjabi household and things like halwa besan laddus kheer and ghee are integral to me. I am fascinated just like you when I see my mom or grandmother cook. Cooking is such a fine art… And mostly the best chefs can be found in the form of our mothers grandmothers and family members of the household. I could really connect to your besan ke laddu post as my naani and grandmother both make them.. After seeing your blog I have been inspired to start a blog one day and share the knowledge and recipes that I have with other people.. The work that you are doing is really good and you are like a supermom to little hari as you manage a blog, care for your family so well and now you are starting your tv show. Congrats on that by the way!! I hope your blog and your cooking journey remains successful!
    Since the besan laddus are so close to my heart, I would love to serve them in these copper bowls .. And I would also like to serve the creamy dudh keri in these bowls… I feel that such special deserts deserve special bowls!
    Best of luck for your future endeavours

  32. This post by you makes semolina halva an exotic recipe !

    I would love to serve divinetaste's Ash Gourd ( White Pumpkin ) Halva in the Fab#Copprebowls with the #Copprespoons as the #Copprebowlspoons combo is the most perfect serving dish for the high standard set by the divinetaste dessert !

  33. Congratulations on the show! Cant wait to learn more recipes from you. It has been over a decade since our family adopted a sattvic lifestyle and ever since your site has been up, it has been the go to place for us – especially for baked desserts.

    Those Coppre bowls look divine! I was reminded of the big copper vessels that are used to cook in the temples. If I were to get it, I will use it to serve Komola Kheer!

  34. I just found you today, by searching 'eggless strawberry cheesecake' – I'm so glad I did! I found out 2 years ago I can't eat eggs, that they had been the source of so many health issues – so I gave up all baked goods. Slowly I've been finding so many resources to eat healthy, and also to be able to enjoy foods made without eggs. I so appreciate people like you sharing your knowledge – I wanted to say Thank You!

  35. Congrats on your new endeavour! Amazing to see some of the blog's popular recipes unfold in your kitchen.

    I'd like to serve creamy kheer à la vrindavan in these warm and homely bowls from Coppre.

  36. I wish there was a like button to like the 34th comment, Anu! 🙂 So happy to know that you'll continue to write here. This website is by default the first place I come to when I want to try a new recipe, an eggless cake or anything new for that matter. Divine Taste is such an integral part of my kitchen. 🙂 Just wanted to chime in and let you know that I watched all three videos of your show on youtube. You look beautiful and have presented the cooking as meticulously as ever! Really admire your dedication to Saatvik cooking. Way to go! 🙂

  37. Hi Anushruti,

    Really very happy to hear that you are doing a TV show. Your cooking looks as mesmerizing on video as it does in your blog. Wish you all the best. So happy to see the kind of good wishes pouring into the blog comments. We need more people like you to spread the goodness of satvik way of cooking and eating. God bless.

  38. Congrats Anushruti..I would serve rava laddoos in these bowl as I have tried this recipe of youts and it was delicious. I would be excited serve rava ladoos in the bowls

  39. Hey congrats for your show.I would like to serve Mango pudding and Komola Kheer in those gorgeous Coppre katoris.

  40. Congratulations, Anushruti! It will be nice to see the recipes live. The videos will be worth a thousand words. I would love to have these bowls, so I can serve your carrot halwa or creamy carrot kheer to my babies. My little one has just learned to eat by herself and these would be greatly excite her 🙂 To prevent war, I will have to give the same to her elder sister.

    Wishing you lots of success in the new venture!

  41. Wow!I tried your saffron,almond and raisins semolina halva it tastes good and my family members enjoyed the recipe.Photography is to good. All the best for all your future ventures.

  42. Wow! I tried your saffron,almond and raisin semolina halva it tastes good and my family members enjoyed the recipe. Photography is to good. All the best for all your future ventures.

  43. Congrats on this new venture Anushruti! May you have many more years of success.

    The Coppre bowls are just beautiful. All your recipes, including desserts, are so perfect that I'm having a hard time picking one. But I suppose I'll go with your gajar halwa, which is a favourite at home.

  44. I am gonna serve Komola Kheer in these absolutely stunning bowls. I guess the bowls look and color will be elevated with orangish komola kheer and radiant saffron strand hues.

  45. Dear Anushruti,

    What a delightful combination. A divine recipe in equally divine looking # Coppre bowls !
    It is so great to see you live and in action. I absolutely adore your website though I may not say it often coz I could bake a cake only because of you 👍
    I watched your videos and just wanted to say that you are totally worth it. Your recipes are fab, you look lovely and have such a pleasant demeanour in the videos. All your viewers would have definitely noticed the beautiful , well organized kitchen and the sparkling shiny cookware especially in the Huli recipe video. Totally divine just like your website. Moreover your humility shines through in your smile and presentation style in the video. What I really appreciate is that you are so passionate about cooking and the best part was you mentioned your Dad in the very first video!😊 we all love our dads and moms don't we ! And what a fine way to put this across …….subtle yet special !!!. shows how much you care and want them to be a part of everything you do. I am sure they are very proud of you ! And so are we. 👏👏
    All the best and may u go on to achieve greater heights in both your professional and personal life.

    and yes The one dessert I would love to serve in these #Coppre bowls is Kheer/ Creamy Rice Pudding which is your very first post on this site when you first went online.
    It is a practice to prepare and serve something sweet when you embark on a new journey or celebrate a special occasion in India. Therefore my vote goes to serving Kheer/ Creamy Rice Pudding in these #Coppre bowls as kheer is an integral part of almost every traditional and sacred meal across our country. These royal #Coppre bowls and your recipe will add a Divine touch not only to the tradition but also to the celebration.
    Once again Congratulations and keep it up !!.
    Warm Regards

  46. Hi Anushruti,

    Congratulations and all the very best. I really am so happy for you and I for one would be delighted to watch you live. I guess there are many many admirers of this lovely blog , who would be sharing the same opinion.
    I would love to serve the traditional moong dal payasam in these lovely traditional copper bowls.

  47. A copper bowl would keep things warm n hot for a long time and hence moong dal kheer is what deserves to b served.
    The copper bowl with brown colour compliments the kheer
    The copper metal adds health value

  48. A sweet like carrot pudding served in the red shinny vessel or a spiced up yellow dal complimenting the bowl
    Love ur traditional touch

  49. Many Congratulations Anushruti!!
    Really glad to see divinetaste reaching this great level..I wish you all the very best for the show and all your future endeavours.
    Warm Regards and all the best!!

  50. Congratulations on your foray into the digital video space!I would like to serve "Rava Laddu/Semolina Balls With Saffron, Cashews, Raisins & Cardamom" in these bowls for the contrast in colours to make the laddus more appealing.

  51. Hi Anushruthi – Congrats on your new venture !!! I would love to serve ash gourd halva in these delightful bowls…

  52. Heartiest Congratulations!!

    I will take this opportunity to thank you for all your recipes especially the baking ones. I have tried other recipes as well and I would love to pile 'besan laddos' in these copper katories. They are so gorgeous. Your sheera and ash gourd halwa will be poured next in them..:)

  53. Congratulations Anushruti..!!! Your blog is amazing and it has excellent recipes some of which I have tried and turned out very delicious. Its also an excellent initiative by both you and Coppre for introducing these giveaways. The sheera looks very inviting in the copper katori. However, I think Creamy Carrot Kheer would look equally great in these katoris 🙂

  54. Very happy with this news of your show. Looking forward for the same.

    I have tried some of your desserts and dishes and my family enjoyed the cakes and the dishes.

    Copper katoris are very beautiful and I would love to offer the traditional moong dal payasam and also the kashi halwa to God.

    Best wishes and regards,

  55. Those katoris are awesome,and as the mango season is nearing can't wait to serve Dudh Keri in it and the silver plating inside will add an extra richness to the king of the fruits mango…
    And thank you for sharing your wonderful creations with us..

  56. Congratulations and way to go!!Glad with the assurance that you will continue to share your knowledge here.

    My Best,

  57. I'm a self-confessed shameless FOODIE!…Been following your FB page since sometime and love most of the food snaps and the recipes!…Hot Carrot/Gajar Halwa or Hot Moongdal Halwa seem really yummy in these Copper Katoris!!

  58. hello dear freind
    im mehrdad from producer of one of the best quality organic saffron in the world.(all red.dry.very good color because its thick.clean)
    i can send u on unbeliavable prices even in small amounts.for more information please contact me.
    with respect

  59. Congratulations Anushruti!
    I'd like to serve individual portions of Cherry Stuffed Caramelized Peaches With Custard Cream. The varied colors along with the copper sheen would look lovely.

  60. Congratulations Anushruti! on your foray into television.
    I love your recipes and loved all your recipe videos as well..

    Thanks for introducing us to Coppre. They have given a modern twist to Tamra ware. I like traditional cooking utensils and these definitely are super likable.
    I'd serve your creamy carrot kheer or just kheer (rice pudding) in them.

    Looking forward to more of your recipe videos..

  61. A big thank you to everybody who participated in the divinetaste #coppre giveaway! I was really touched by all the wonderful messages and comments as I read each one of them, very carefully! It was indeed a tough choice for us to decide the winner and we had to unfortunately count a few out as the rules of this giveaway stated that the comments had to be posted on as well as the facebook page, tagging coppre and we could not find the tags of some comments posted on the website on this page and vice versa.

    The shortlisted candidates are:

    1. At the corner of happy and harried (comment no.4)
    2. Indulekha (comment no.33)
    3. Noodlehead (comment no 50)
    4. Radhika (comment no.25)
    5. Shrinath Shenoy (comment no.13)
    6. Thangalakshmi (comment no.1)
    7. Aparna Chandramouli (comment no.35)
    8. Shirley Simpson (comment no.55)

    We had a lucky draw of the short listed candidates and the winner is…drum roll please..


    And because of the overwhelming response, we have decided to give another gift of salad servers. And the winner for this is


    Once again, we thank you for participating in the contest. Congratulations to the winners, Indulekha and Noodlehead. Please message me your address and phone number and #coppre will ship the gifts to the winners.

  62. Hi Anu,
    Thank you for your fabulous website and now the videos. Congrats to the winners.

  63. hi Anushruthi,

    congratulations on your new show. I have been following you here and now I will do the same with the youtube. Just a quick question are the pans you use in Videos nonstick.

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