Shahi Tukray, translating literally to "royal bites", is a subcontinental dessert originating from the Mughal Empire, and is my FAVORITE Pakistani dessert (which says a lot, considering Gulab Jamun and Rus Malai are in contention). This is a bread and milk based no-bake dessert, and the best way to describe it is if Rus Malai, French Toast, and Tres Leches had a baby.
This Easy Shahi Tukray recipe is a must try - it is really simple with only ~15 minutes of active work, 6 ingredients, and way more delicious than you would think. The kind of delicious where you keep going back for more (I just wiped up half a dish on my own..). So, let's get into it, shall we?!
This recipe needs only 6 simple ingredients (one of which is salt) - it's THAT easy! Make sure you scroll down to the recipe card for the exact quantities:
- Kings Hawaiian Original Hawaiian Sweet Rolls - I find that these rolls are the perfect size, taste and texture for Shahi Tukray. However, if you don't have them, don't worry! You can use any plain bread you like. I would recommend using a soft bread like brioche which comes in a loaf so you can cut it into slices yourself
- Unsalted Butter to fry the rolls - you can also use oil if you like, but I suggest butter as it tastes better
- Whole milk
- Sweetened condensed milk
- Cardamom pods or cardamom powder - this recipe uses a small amount of cardamom so it's not overpowering, but if you are not a fan, you can skip it or use cinnamon or vanilla instead
- Salt - always add a bit of salt to your desserts to balance things out!
HOW TO MAKE EASY SHAHI TUKRAY
The technique for this recipe is purposefully simplified. There are many different techniques out there: many require making a milk mixture with milk and sugar and cooking it down, some include sugar syrups, and some include rabri. But I wanted to share a recipe which is no-fuss and doesn't require much work, and I personally believe the end result is still the best!
Here's a video where you can see the process in action:
So here's what you do:
1. Fry the bread until golden and crispy
Since we are using Kings Hawaiian Rolls, first slice the bread into half horizontally and then divide into the separate rolls - this will give you a total of 24 small slices of bread.
In a nonstick pan, shallow fry the rolls in unsalted butter until they are golden on both sides. You don't need so much butter that the rolls are getting deep fried, but also don't use so little that they don't crisp up nicely. I used almost a whole stick (½ cup).
2. Prepare the quick milk mixture
Add the milk, cardamom and salt to a saucepan, and cook on medium low heat until the milk boils and starts to thicken up (about 5-7 minutes). We're not looking for a thick mixture, we just want it to start thickening.
Then, add the sweetened condensed milk and simmer for another 1-2 minutes. Since everyone has different taste preferences, I strongly suggest adding the sweetened condensed milk a little at a time and tasting until it meets your desired level of sweetness. I used up almost ¾ of a can.
Place the fried bread in your serving dish of choice, as nicely as you can! I like to do a stacked arrangement that follows the direction of my dish, and used an oval dish for this recipe. You serving dish should be a size such that the slices are somewhat stacked (i.e., not placed too loosely) and there's enough height to hold onto the milk mixture.
Once the bread has been arranged, pour over the milk mixture, making sure to get it everywhere. I like to pass my milk through a strainer to remove any lumps and the cardamom pods (because I don't know about you, but I've never met anyone who's enjoyed eating them..).
That's it! Now just place the dish in the refrigerator until the Shahi Tukray are fully cooled down (~2 hours or more).
4. Decorate and serve!
When you're ready to serve, garnish your Shahi Tukray with any toppings of your choice! Slivered almonds, dried rose petals and silver flakes are classic, but I opted for a simpler finish with almonds and freeze dried strawberries (which I think taste nicer than rose petals).
Serve and enjoy!!
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
If you don't have access to Hawaiian Rolls, don't worry! You can use any kind of plain bread you like. Many people make these with simple sandwich bread, but I prefer using something softer and tastier like brioche. Also opt for something with slightly thicker slices (~½" thick each). The shape and size doesn't really matter so you can play around with it. I also don't find that you need to remove the crust of the bread, as it becomes soft and yummy after being soaked.
Yes, you can, but oil doesn't taste as good as butter! So while we are making a yummy indulgent dessert, I strongly recommend butter.
Yes, you can! These can be prepared 1-2 days in advance, and then stored in the fridge in an airtight container (or with a plastic wrap over the serving dish) for 5-7 days.
The cardamom adds a lovely sweetness to the dessert, making it taste similar to Rus Malai. However, if you don't like it, you can opt for a vanilla or cinnamon flavor instead, too.
Now, let's look at the recipe! If you try this out, do leave a review below 🙂
If you enjoy this recipe, you will also love my other no bake desserts! Check them out: