Goan Navries also known as gujia /Ghughra in Gujarat / Karanji in Maharashtra / Somas in Tamil Nadu / Garijalu in Telangana / Kajjikaya in Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka.
Navries/Gujiya is a traditional Indian sweet made on the occasion of the festival of colors –Christmas/Newyear Holi.
It is a fried pastry stuffed with a sweet filling of khoya (mawa), dry fruits, saffron, coconut, and sugar. I am sharing a tried and tested Kesar Mawa Gujiya Recipe for an indulgent festive treat.
Navries/Gujiya is a famous North Indian festive sweet made with suji or maida, stuffed with a sweet mixture of khoya (mawa) and dried fruits. It’s traditionally deep-fried and has a crisp and flaky texture.
It is also known as Ghughra in Gujarat, Karanji in Maharashtra, Somas in Tamil Nadu, Garijalu in Telangana and, Kajjikaya in Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka, with each regions having their versions of fillings.
Ingredients Required for Navries:-
The outer pastry cover for ghujia requires only three ingredients – maida, ghee, and water.
For the stuffing, you need – khoya (mawa), chopped dry fruits (almonds, raisins, pistachio, chironji), desiccated coconut, saffron, and powdered sugar
Ingredients for the dough
- 500 gram all-purpose flour (maida)
- 1/3 Cup Ghee
- Water to bind the dough
Ingredients for the filling
- 400 gram unsweetened khoya (mawa/khova/evaporated milk)
- 2 tablespoon ghee
- 1/4 Cup desiccated unsweetened coconut
- One fourth Cup golden raisins (kish mish)
- 1/4 Cup chironji (charoli)
- One fourth Cup almonds
- 1/4 Cup unsalted pistachio
- 1/2 Cup powdered sugar or to taste
- 1 teaspoon green cardamom powder (elaichi powder)
- 1 teaspoon saffron strands
For the glaze
- 2 Cups water
- 1 Cup sugar
- Water to seal the Ghujias
- refined oil or ghee for deep frying
Instructions for making Navrie/Karanji:-
Prepare the dough:
- For the dough, rub flour and ghee between your fingers for the next 5 – 6 minutes. Do not skip this step.
- Adding 1/4 cup water at time bind dough. The dough should be firm to touch. Knead it for 5 minutes. Perform dimple test (see recipe notes). Cover the dough with a wet muslin cloth and set aside.
- To make the filling, in heavy-bottomed pan heat ghee on medium heat, add grated khoya and turn the flame to low.
- On low flame stirring occasionally let mawa turn into light golden in color. At this stage, mawa will leave its own ghee and start leaving sides of the pan (refer to the step-by-step images above). Turn off the gas and set aside until it cools down.
- Meanwhile, in a food processor blend raisins, pistachio, and almond to a coarse powder. You should feel the graininess of the dry fruits. Do not make a fine powder.
- Once mawa cools down, mix in sugar, coconut, dry fruits mixture, chironji, cardamom powder, and saffron. Mix nicely and crumble the chunks of roasted khoya.
- The ghujia stuffing should resemble a coarse powder with all the ingredients mixed nicely.
- For making ghujias, knead the dough once again for a minute or so.
- Divide the dough into about 50 equal sized small balls. Roll each ball into about 4 to 3 inch diameter (like a poori).
- Place the rolled dough into gujia mould. Dip your finger in the water and spread it around the edges of the rolled dough.
- Put about 1 tablespoons of the filling mixture in the center and fold it into a semi-circle along with the mold, press firmly. Make sure the edges are completely sealed otherwise they will open while frying and oil will get in and filling will come out.
- Remove the excess dough and continue filling the rest of the gujia in the same manner.
- Heat about 1-1/2 inches of oil in a heavy bottomed frying pan on medium heat. To test if the oil is hot enough, drop a small piece of dough into the oil. It should sizzle right away but come to the surface slowly.
- Place the gujia in the frying pan 3 – 4 at a time. After gujiyas are floating on top of the oil, turn them slowly. Fry the gujias until they turn light golden-brown color on all sides. Don’t fry on high heat; the gujia crust will be too soft and not crispy.
- Frying each batch of gujiya takes 10 – 12 minutes. So do not rush this process. And keep turning them while frying at regular intervals for even cooking and coloring.
- When they are done cooking, lift them out of the oil with a slotted spoon and drain on an absorbent paper.
- For making glaze, boil water and sugar in a pan until sugar dissolves and syrup is slightly thickened and sticky.
- Dip in ghujias in the sugar syrup and and remove on a plate.
- Let the ghujias cool completely before storing it in an airtight container.
- Serve kesar mawa gujiya warm or at room temperature.