Guyanese Parsad is made with parched flour, ghee or butter, milk, sugar, and spices. It is connected to all of my memories of my grandmother Evelyn. She was a Hindu and made sweets for every Hindu holiday and all of her poojahs or jhandis.
The parsad at poojahs came in a brown paper bag that was always stained by the grease from the ghee. I have a very distinct memory of the contents of this greasy brown paper bag. There was parsad, ½ of a small banana, a piece of watermelon, some pomegranate seeds and other sweets. I can still taste that banana and watermelon with little bits of parsad stuck to it.
What's in this post:
What is parsad?
For most Guyanese, parsad is simply this dish of flour cooked in ghee or butter. For most Indians Prasad is an offering made to a deity or God. And what I am making here with the the flour and ghee is called halwa, more specifically maida (all purpose flour) halwa. Some Hindus in Guyana also call this dish Mohanbhog as it is very similar to Bengali Mohan Bhog.
Parching the flour with Ghee
- Add flour to melted ghee or butter and mix until combined
- Keep stirring continuously until mixture is loose
- Continue to cook until mixture is slightly brown and begins the texture begins to change
- Cook, stirring constantly to prevent burning until mixture is brown and looks fluffy and a bit grainy but be careful not to burn the flour.
Keeping it Simple
I love good food but don't like complicated steps so to make my parsad I follow these simple steps:
- Add milk, spices, sugar and raisins to a sauce pan and bring it to a boil
- While the milk is heating up parch the flour
- Then add the hot milk to the parched flour and mix together.
It is that easy (a bit messy, but still easy)!
Printable Recipe Card
- 2 cups All purpose flour sifted
- 3 cups whole milk
- ¾ cup granulated sugar may also use brown sugar or Demerara sugar
- ¾ cup Ghee may also use butter
- 1-2 Cinnamon sticks may substitute for ½ teaspoon of ground cinnamon
- 2-4 Cardamom pods
- ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ cup raisins rinsed
- Combine milk, sugar, cinnamon, cardamom, vanilla extract and raisins in a small sauce pan and bring to a boil on medium heat, then reduce the heat to low once the milk starts to boil
- While milk is coming to a boil, add a large saucepan to medium-high heat and bring up to temperature
- Then add the ghee and allow to melt completely
- When ghee is completely melted add the flour and mix together well, stirring constantly to prevent burning
- Continue to cook the ghee and flour mixture for 5 to 8 minutes, stirring constantly, until it is light brown in color and a bit fluffy in texture
- Then remove from the heat and immediately add the milk, spices and raisins mixture to the cooked (parched) flour and butter and mix until completely combined and smooth
- Allow to cool then serve with some pomegranate seeds if you like.
- Combine milk, sugar, ghee or butter, cardamom, cinnamon, vanilla extract and raisins in a small sauce pan and bring to a boil on medium heat
- While milk mixture is coming to a boil, add a pan to medium heat and bring up to temperature
- When pan is hot add flour and toast/parch (continuously stirring to avoid burning) until flour is light brown in color.
- Then add the milk and raisins mixture to the flour and mix until completely combined
- Next reduce heat to low and continue stirring mixture until thick and smooth
- Remove from heat and allow to cool before serving
Maybe things have changed because I learned like 16 yrs ago. My cousin in law taught me. 1st u parch the flour then sieve it. 2nd melt the butter add the flour while stirring continuously. 3rd add sugar water to mixture (still stirring on fire) 4th add raisins and cherries and milk (optional). Finish lol. But u hv to average the cooking time to make sure its cooked thoroughly.
This is how I used to make it. But the butter always made the flour clump up. So then I started putting it in the milk. Other recipes I saw online they add the flour to the pot of boiling milk and let it cook down. When I saw this my main concern was am I cooking this flour long enough? But I've made it several times and no one got sick, so...
Nice work Althee!!
Thanks Girl 😀
Great proportions! Thanks! I made it with soy milk instead of whole milk and it was just as good!!
Glad it came out great. Thanks for checking my blog out.
I use a sieve to sift the parched flour, pressing any lumps with the back of the spoon, then mix the flour into the milk (without the butter). The butte is then melted in the pot on low heat and the flour/milk mixture is added and turned until it forms the same consistency. With this process, no lumps have to be dealt with during the cooking process, and the buttery flavour is more pronounced!
Susan Bhamdeo says
Girl, I tried making parsad last week and it came out smooth and silky like sirnie. I don't like that. I will try your way. This looks easier. Thanks! 🙂
Thank You for sharing 🤤🤤
Altee Brown says
I saw this on Instagram and made within a couple hours because it looked so good! I have never had it before, but I love it! My kids really like it too. Thank you!!
I made parsad gluten, sugar and dairy free today for the first time thanks to your recipe (I used stevia instead of coconut sugar) and it was as perfect as it could be! Thanks so much for sharing these gluten free alternatives to our traditional recipes. Happy Phagwah!
Althea Brown says
Yay. Thank you so much for trying it and sharing. Yummy.
I love this recipe so much! Question: could the milk be substituted for almond?