Orange Basundi

I love visiting fresh fruit markets. They are a great visual and gastronomic treat! I spotted some beautiful oranges going at the rate of 8 oranges for $2 and I instantly picked them up. I made fresh orange juice from some of them and it was very refreshing. I had picked up great oranges at a steal. With the remaining oranges, I wanted to use them in a different way. I’m a fan of basundi, but sometimes, it can be too rich and cloying. It is after all, a thick, rich and creamy milk based dessert of Indian origin. The plain basundi is typically garnished with sliced almonds and pistachios and is best when serve chilled. I decided to infuse the fresh oranges at the end so that the citrus notes of the fruit could add a nice blend to the dish. Preparing this dish requires a bit of patience but it turned out to be one of the best desserts I’ve made. The taste and texture were exactly as I like them. On the same note, this is the FIFA world cup season and I do watch most of the matches even though it is generally post midnight in Singapore. The Dutch team are doing really well and most of their supporters are dressed in their trademark orange lion garbs. So this dessert with oranges is something that I dedicate to the Dutch supporters. Cheers!

Orange basundi front
Orange basundi front view

Recipe Details :
Makes: 4 glasses
Time: 60 mins
Difficulty: Medium

Ingredients :

  • 2 sweet oranges
  • 4 cups milk
  • 1 cup condensed milk
  • 10 pieces of sliced almonds (optional)
  • 7-8 saffron threads (optional)

Orange basundi top
Orange basundi top view


  • Extract the juice of two oranges and strain it through a mesh filter. Set it aside in the refrigerator.
  • Take the milk in a vessel and keep it on low flame. Boil the milk till it reduces by half. This process will take around 45-50 mins on a low flame. As the quantity of milk reduces, keep stirring every 3-4 mins as you don’t want the milk to burn or stick to the bottom of the vessel.
  • After (around) 30 mins, the milk changes colour and turns light brown and creamy. Keep stirring it at regular intervals.
  • Add the condensed milk at this stage and let it boil for another 15 mins on low flame.
  • Sprinkle the saffron threads over the warm milk and let it cool to room temperature.
  • Once it is cooled to room temperature, refrigerate the basundi for 3-4 hours.
  • Before serving, take out the chilled basundi and add the orange juice to it. A nice orange layer will be seen on the top. Adjust the orange juice quantity to the level of tartness you prefer.
  • Garnish with sliced almonds or even some orange segments on top and you have a dessert that you can absolutely relish. This can be served as a dessert or also eaten with puris.

  • Tips :

    • Continuous monitoring of the milk while its boiling and reducing is required and it should be on low flame.
    • Sweet oranges would be perfect for this dish.

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