Parsi Dahitran

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by Rita Jamshed Kapadia

Makes a great Treat – it is sweet, rose flavored, salty and melts in your mouth.

Sujata Massey has called this delicacy as Dahitan in her book The Widows of Malabar Hill (A Perveen Mistry Novel). Made by the Yazdani Bakery in 1915.

The parsi one has Rose and salt and the taste is heavenly.

The Gujarati one is fluffy and melts in your mouth.

Either way Parsi Dahitran and Gujarati Dahitra are winners for the biscuit which is homemade and without preservatives or added sugars.

Recipe  (from cookbook Vividh Vani)


1 cup sifted flour (All purpose)

1 cup sifted Ravo (Semolina)

1 cup Sugar

2 tbsp sour curds (yogurt)

1 Tbsp  Butter (salted)

1/4 cup water with pinch of salt

1 drop Rose essence or 1 tbsp Rose water


In a small pot heat 1/2 cup water and sugar till syrupy for 10 minutes.

Sprinkle the Rose essence/Rose water in syrup and keep aside.

Knead into a dough the semolina, curds, butter (melted) and flour.

Keep aside for 3 hours.

Roll into 1/4 inch thick, cut out small rounds or rectangles  (TIP: use salted water on your hands)

Heat oil on very low heat and fry these biscuits till golden brown.

Drain and soak these in the rose water syrup.

Recipe #2


Maida 1- 1/2 cups
Rawa (semolina) 1/2 cup
Pinch of salt
Ghee 1 tablespoon or little more
Milk for making the dough.

Sugar syrup (1:1)
Sugar 4 cups
Water 4 cups


Make sugar syrup of just 1 string consistency, or little less. Let it cool to room temperature.

Bind the dough with milk. Not too soft and not too thick. Let it rest for 5 to 10 minutes.

Roll and cut small circles with cookie cutter.

Now deep fry in hot oil till golden brown in colour. They will puff up. Leave on sieve to drain excess oil and cool.

After they cool, add to the syrup for sometime, till both sides absorb some sugar.

Serve with tea. Enjoy!!!  

Cookbook: Vividh Vani (Gujarati) -
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Cookbook: Vividh Vani (Gujarati) -
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Books available on Amazon Manna of the 21st Century: Parsi Cuisine Paperback Hardcover Indian Parsi Kitchen Celebrations: Celebrating Zoroastrian Festivals and Traditions Dhansak: Parsi Cuisine

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