What is a phitha?
A pitha is similar to a pie. Pithas are hugely popular in Bangladesh and some parts of India, where they are made on special occasions such as Eid and Pujas as well as during other times where they are served as special treat.
What is a rosh pitha?
Well, I'm not entirely sure as I only came across the recipe on a website earlier today. From what I can gather, the rosh pitha is a sweet and juicy type of swirly pitha made from milk and flour.
What do you need to make it?
For the pitha:
Half a pan of milk
Plain flour (no measured quantity, sorry, just add as you go along!)
Grounded rice flour (same as above)
Pinch of salt
For the sheera:
How do you make it?
I followed the recipe as provided on the website, but in short it sort of happened like this for me:
Making the dough
Fill half a saucepan with milk and boil it. Once boiled, add a pinch of salt and lots of plain flour and rice flour, more or less in equal quantity. Keep stirring. If the bottom of the pan catches the heat, remove the saucepan. Continue to stir until you have grounded most of the lumpy flour - BEWARE: it gets seriously lumpy. The desired consistency should be of a doughy one, so add more rice flour and plain flour until the ideal dough is reached, again making sure the lumps are broken down thoroughly.
Making the swirly pitha
Once the desired consistency and low temp has been reached, rub a little oil onto the palms of both hands from a small bowlful. Pinch a round of dough and rub into a dough ball shape. Roll out the ball further to obtain a long and narrow shape. When satisfied with the shape, swirl the dough into a small shape on the palm of your hand. Your swirly pitha should be secure and tightly coiled.
Frying the pitah
In a shallow frying pan, heat some vegetable oil before gently dropping the pitha in. As the pitha cooks, make sure it doesn't burn but achieves a golden colour. Flip the pitha over and fry the other side to get the same colour on both sides.
Making the sheera
In a separate pan (milk or saucepan), add about one to two cups of sugar with some cardamoms and a bay leaf. Pour in some kettle boiled water and allow the sugar to fully dissolve. Check by dipping in a wooden spoon to see if all the sugar particles have dissolved. When satisfied, gently drop in the fried pithas and allow to soak for five minutes or so. The longer the pitha swims in the sheera, the more the sugar will penetrate the dough.
How delicious are they?
Well and truly delish, I'm eating one as I type. I will have to go easy with these swirly treats though, oil and sugar - baaad bad combination.
Easy to make?
Have a try yourself and find out! This was my first attempt and I have to say, it was much easier than I thought it would be!