Barfi can best be described as a sweet milk based soft somewhat crumbly fudge. It is very popular in Trinidad and Tobago, frequently used during religious prayers and festivals like Divali. Other popular varieties here in Trinidad include Coconut Barfi.
The real stars of Barfi are the spices. The hint of ginger and cardamom makes this sweet treat a dream.
To make it extra special top the Barfi with sprinkles, nuts, shredded coconut or edible gold/silver leaf.
This version, is perfect for anyone who loves traditional barfi but cannot tolerate dairy. Follow my recipe notes about texture and you will barely notice the difference in comparison to one made with milk.
Try this dairy free vegan almond barfi recipe, I promise it's not hard to make at all!
Mix the almond flour with the coconut cream or milk
Make the sugar syrup and combine with the almond flour mix
1 cup blanched almond flour
1/8 tsp salt
2 tbsp coconut cream (or coconut milk; I used @naturescharm coconut whipping cream)
½ cup white sugar
¼ cup water
pinch of nutmeg powder
1 tsp ginger powder (you can use fresh grated ginger to taste)
½ tbsp cardamom powder
1 tbsp vegan butter or vegetable margarine
(14 g) rainbow sprinkles
Line a baking tray with parchment paper and set aside (I used a 7” x 7” baking tin)
Mix the almond flour and salt together. Add the coconut cream (or milk) and mix until the flour is fully moistened. Set aside.
Add the sugar, water and spices to a skillet over medium heat. Mix well and bring to a rolling boil until the sugar dissolves and the mixture begins to thicken like a syrup. Add in the margarine, mix well.
Once the syrup reaches soft ball stage*, add the almond flour mixture. Press to mix the flour and the sugar syrup together until it is homogeneous like dough.
Continue to cook on low heat, stirring frequently until the mixture begins to dry and gets lighter in colour (the longer it cooks, the lighter it gets). The mixture will begin to pull away from the sides of the pan in one piece. Taste and adjust “seasonings” if necessary, be careful as the mixture will be very hot!
The cooking of the Barfi can take up to 15 minutes (more or less) depending on the texture you want. Less cooking time will give you a soft, moist, chewy Barfi that is somewhat yellow in colour. More cooking time and therefore a drier mixture will give a texture that more closely resembles the Milk Barfi popular in Trinidad and Tobago. The Barfi will be lighter in colour as well. If the mixture becomes too dry, simply add more water and re-cook until you are satisfied.
Spread the mixture out evenly in the tray. Press firmly to smooth the top and compress the mix. Add sprinkles and press into the barfi, you can use a piece of parchment paper on top of the mix to help with this.
If you made a “drier” Barfi, go ahead and slice it into pieces however you prefer. If the Barfi is more moist, wait for it to cool almost completely before slicing. In either case serve when properly set and cooled.
Store in the refrigerator
*Soft-ball stage (235–240 degrees Fahrenheit: When you drop a small amount of syrup into very cold water, it forms a ball. When removed from the water the ball flattens, hence the term soft ball.