Translate to your native language

Madganeh (Bengal Gram Payasam/Karwari Payas)

Recipe credit: Darshana Muzumdar

Serves 4 as part of a traditional Indian meal.


  • 1 cup chana dal (Bengal gram)
  • 1 coconut
  • ½ cup jaggery (palm sugar) or more to taste
  • 4-5 cardamoms
  • ¼ cup coconut pieces sliced thin
  • ½ cup broken cashew nuts


  • Wash and cook the bengal gram in enough water to just cover it and a little more. Once cooked, the water should be less than half of the level of the Bengal gram in the pot.
  • Break the coconut and cut out some pieces of the white part to sliver and use in the payas.
  • Grate the rest of the coconut and put it in a pot. Add very hot water enough to submerge it completely. Let it soak for 15 minutes. Put this in a blender jar and blend until it is very fine. Strain this through a muslin cloth placed over a pot to get the thick first extract of milk. Keep this aside for the payas.
  • Powder the cardamom fine. When the Bengal gram is cooked, add the coconut milk and jaggery and cook on low heat till the jaggery is dissolved and all the flavours are well blended.
  • Add the cashew nut, coconut pieces, cardamom powder, and a pinch of salt and take it off the heat.
  • Serve hot or at room temperature. It can also be served chilled though traditionally it isn’t.
  • Note: Place the leftover coconut fiber after the first extract has been removed in the blender again, add enough water to ensure it moves smoothly and blend once again for a minute or more. Strain this to get the second extract of thin coconut milk. This second extract can be used to make kadhi or a buttermilk substitute by adding lime juice, roasted cumin powder, and salt.

For the Whole-Food Plant-Based (WFPB) version:

Use the entire finely ground coconut without straining it instead of the coconut milk. Also reduce the amount of coconut a little bit if you wish as the payas will become much thicker.

Use soft or soaked dates, or soaked raisins, instead of jaggery. Grind the dates/raisins along with the coconut. You may need to use more dates than normal because the fibre in the ground coconut will reduce the sweetness of the payas.

Leave a Reply

Shopping Basket