5 Popular Types Of Barfi You Should Explore

The appeal of desi barfi lies in its elegant, mess-free appeal. It has become a staple in almost every festival but not every occasion calls for the same recipe. There are many different types of barfis, from khoya barfi to kaju katli to tiranga barfi; while a peanut, dal or chickpea barfi is more commonly made during spring festivals as a homage to local produce, festivals like Holi and Diwali usually call for indulgent pista barfi, or saffron-tinged kaju katli.

According to history, Maratha chef Bhimrao, in the 16th century, was inspired by the Parsi sweet Halwa-e-Farsi and replaced the almonds with cashews which was more widely available, and the kaju katli was born.

Similarly, other barfi variants also have interesting backstories. The dodha barfi, for instance, was made by the wrestler Lala Hans Raj Vig, in 1912, in Punjabi who was looking for the perfect energy food. He made an indulgent barfi made with milk, ghee and sugar which is topped with nuts. Some versions of the barfi are even made with mawa and caramelised sugar. If you’re planning to explore some barfis for Holi, bookmark the most popular ones.

Traditional Khoya Barfi

The classic khoya barfi is made from reduced milk solids (khoya), sugar, and ghee and has a dense and fudgy texture, with a hint of caramelized flavour from the khoya. It’s ideal for foodies who associate a milk-and-ghee-rich dessert with festivities; however, it’s not the best option for someone who has a dairy or nut allergy since this rich, dairy-rich barfi is garnished with a sprinkle of chopped nuts or edible silver foil.

Kaju Katli (Cashew Barfi)

One of the most popular barfi varieties, this decadent barfi is made from finely ground cashew nuts, sugar, and a touch of cardamom. Known for its smooth and melt-in-your-mouth texture, kaju katli is a hit with foodies of all ages. They are often adorned with edible silver varq and decorated with silvered almonds, making them an ideal dessert for special occasions. 

Pista Barfi (Pistachio Barfi):

This decadent pastel green barfi is made from a blend of ground pistachios, sugar, and khoya, this barfi boasts a luscious green colour and a rich, creamy texture. With its delicate balance of sweetness and nuttiness, pista barfi offers an elevated profile, that’s more complex and quite nuanced than a regular nutty barfi. 

Coconut Barfi

Coconut barfi can be made in different ways and the amount of coconut you want to use, depends on your preference. This barfi can accommodate quite a few other ingredients. Typically it’s made from freshly grated coconut, sugar, and a hint of cardamom and has a chewy texture and fragrant aroma. Whether rolled in desiccated coconut or garnished with silvered almonds, this barfi is a win-win!

Chocolate Barfi

This is a modern recipe which was introduced once chocolate began entering the desi and fusion mithai segment. It brings together the richness of chocolate with the creaminess of khoya; whether swirled with dark chocolate for a bittersweet indulgence or studded with white chocolate chips for a touch of sweetness, this is one of the best sweet treats!