Almond and saffron balls recipes

Category: Desserts and puddings

Almond and saffron balls


  • 150g blanched almonds
  • 2 pinches saffron
  • 2tbsp ghee
  • 200ml condensed milk
  • 2-3tbsp desiccated coconut, plus 2tbsp for rolling
  • 50g khoya (milk fudge, see recipe, below)


  • 1 litre whole milk


Makes 10-12

Place the almonds in a bowl and pour over enough hot water to cover. Allow to soak overnight.

The next day, place the saffron in a small dish of hot water for 15-20 minutes. Drain the almonds and using 2-3 tablespoons of the saffron water, grind the almonds to a paste in a food processor.

Heat the ghee in a heavy-based saucepan over a medium heat. Add the ground almond paste and fry for 3-4 minutes, stirring constantly. Add the condensed milk and coconut and stir until the mixture comes together and forms a shiny ball. Turn off the heat and allow to cool for 10 minutes.

Using your hands, shape the mixture into 10-12 balls, then roll them in some khoya and coconut.

Serve immediately or store in an airtight container in the fridge for 1-2 days.


Be careful to keep the milk over a low heat and stir frequently to avoid it burning.

In a heavy-based saucepan, bring the milk to a boil. Keep stirring and scrape any dried milk from the sides of the saucepan, stirring it into the milk. Keep cooking on a low heat until the milk reaches the consistency of mashed potato or ricotta cheese, about 45 minutes.

Allow to cool then transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate. Use within 1 week.

Recipe credit: Recipes and photographs taken from Mountain Berries and Desert Spice by Sumayya Usmani. Photography by Joanna Yee

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