Fig and Walnut Srikhand
Yogurt Dessert Flavored with Figs and Walnuts
Srikhand is a very popular dessert of Gujarat and Maharashtra. This is a very easy to make dessert, and it requires no baking or cooking. It is made from strained yogurt and sugar. It is most often flavored with dry fruits, cardamom, and saffron. Other common flavors include fresh fruits and mango pulp, but one can be creative in flavoring Srikhand. Here I am using figs and Walnuts to flavor this rich and creamy dessert. This combination works so well and is excellent variation just in time for holidays. Traditionally Srikhand is made with only yogurt, but I do add sour cream to it to get extra richness and creaminess. This can be made with low fat yogurt and sour cream to trim it down a bit. I have used regular yogurt and low fat sour cream and I am making it in bulk for holidays. You can reduce the recipe by half.
One 80 oz Yogurt whole or low fat (from an Indian Grocery Store)
One 16 oz low fat Sour Cream
8-10 Whole Figs
1 Cup Walnuts Whole or 2/3 Cup Walnuts coarsely grind + some for garnishing
1 and ½ Cups Sugar
1 tsp good pure Vanilla Extract
Small pinch of red food color
You will also need muslin or cheese cloth and a rubber band and/or a string.
Straining Yogurt and Sour Cream:
- Center muslin or cheese cloth over a strainer. Keep strainer in a mixing bowl to catch all the liquid.
- Gather all the edges in center and tie the cloth with a rubber band. Because I am working with larger quantities, I am straining yogurt and sour cream using traditional method of hanging. To hang, you will have to be creative depending on what is available to you. I use the rod on a step stool to hang the pouch from to drain the liquid (see picture below). You can also take two chairs, put a stick across the top and hang the yogurt on the stick with a string or by edges. Keep a bowl underneath to collect all the liquid. (For smaller amount, center muslin or cheese cloth in a strainer, put strainer in a bigger and mixing bowl to collect the liquid, and keep it in strainer over night. Make sure the mixing bowl is deep enough so that excess liquid does not overflow or touch the strainer.)
- Let this strain over night. Once excess liquid is strained from yogurt and sour cream, the volume will reduce in half or less and, yogurt-sour cream mixture will be very firm.
Preparing Figs and Walnuts:
- Soak figs in warm water for about ½ an hour or until they are plumped.
- While figs are soaking, coarsely grind Walnuts.
- Once figs are plumped, cut any stubby stem off figs, and grind them to coarse paste. (I used a small food processor, but a blander, hand blander or something like Bullet will work fine).
- In a large mixing bowl, add strained yogurt-sour cream mixture, walnuts, crushed figs, vanilla extract, and a small pinch/drop of red food color.
- Add 2/3 of a cup of sugar. Start with 2/3 cup of sugar, and slowly add more until you reach desired sweetness. I personally don’t like it too sweet. The amount of sugar you use will also depend on how sour the yogurt you start out with.
- Mix everything with a hand mixer, a hand blander or a big spoon or a whisk and some elbow grease.
- Taste and adjust sugar to your liking.
- Let it sit in fridge for at least a few hours and serve cold. Garnish with some whipped cream and walnuts.