Rava/Sooji/Fine Semolina - 1 cup
Sugar - 1.75 cup (or 2 cups if you want it very sweet)
Water - 3 cups (or replace part or whole of it with milk for a richer taste - called Sojji instead)
Ghee - 1/4 cup
Orange food colouring - as reqd
Cashew bits - 1 tbsp (I didn't use since my daughter is allergic)
Raisins - 2 tbsp
Elaichi powder - from 2 to 3 cardamoms
1) Heat 1 tbsp of ghee in a heavy bottomed pan and fry cashews & raisins till the cashews are golden & the raisins puff up. Remove them with a slotted spoon and keep aside. NOTE: Refrain from popping these into your mouth while making the kesari regardless of how tempting this may be - this is really hard for me to do... :)
2) In the remaining ghee, add the rava and roast till fragrant. It should not turn brown. Keep this aside as well.
3) Bring to boil the 3 cups of water in the pan and add some orange food colouring. Reduce the flame at this point and add the roasted rava in a steady stream while constantly stirring with the other hand. Stir until the mixture begins to thicken.
4) When thick enough (the rava would've cooked by now), add the sugar and cook until the mixture thickens again, adding ghee little by little until it is shiny and leaves the sides of the pan. Stir in elaichi powder and fried raisins (& cashews, if using).
If you want to cut into shapes, allow to cool a bit and then do so. Delicious Kesari is now ready to dig in. My daughter loves anything that is heart-shaped so sandwiches, pooris, dosa, chapathi and even this kesari has been shaped thus to appeal to her.