Mishti Doi Recipe

Step by StepJump to Recipe

Mishti Doi, a cherished delicacy of Bengal, is a timeless yogurt treat made from milk, yogurt culture, and jaggery or sugar. Traditionally prepared in clay pots, it acquires a distinctive earthy taste. Incorporating the winter specialty, date palm jaggery or nolen gur, adds a rich brown color to the sweetened thick yogurt. I’ve included this special ingredient in my own Mishti Doi recipe. You shouldn’t overlook the opportunity to indulge in this delightful dessert – it offers a unique alternative to typical sweets.

mishti doi served in earthenware with text layovers.

About Mishti Doi

When we translate this Bengali name in English, it would simply mean:

Mishti – sweet

Doi – curd or yogurt

So, if you want to even translate Mishti Doi into Hindi, it would be called as Meetha Dahi. In English it will be Sweet Yogurt.

I’ve heard about some stories relating to the origin of the Mishti Doi recipe. Before I go onto that, this curd variety is not just famous in West Bengal, but also is a popular dessert in the Bogra district of Bangladesh and other Indian states like Odisha, Assam and Tripura. The Assamese version may also be referred to as Meetha Doi.

Why earthenware is a preferred choice as the container to set the Mishti Doi? The answer to this is the porous walls of the earthenware help in perfect thickening of the yogurt as it gradually evaporates.

Not just this, they also produce an apt temperature, which is an essential requirement for the growth of the culture. This also results in a typical taste, which is spectacular at all levels!

According to legends, a common belief amongst the locals in Bengal has been that, consuming Mishti Doi before any assignments taken would lead to successful results.

mishti doi served in an earthen bowl with a spoon in it and text layover.

This resonates with the other Indian belief of having dahi-shakkar (curd-sugar) before leaving from home to appear for any exam.

Till today, mothers feed their children a spoonful of sweetened curd, which is considered as auspicious. Scientifically, it keeps the body and mind cool to take on the pressure of examinations.

Also, while you’re going through this Mishti Doi recipe, I would suggest you to take a look at this recipe of How To Make Curd. So that from now on, you’re always consuming a batch of fresh homemade curd and also using it to make more of Curd Recipes.

About This Recipe

Mishti Doi was and is one of my favorite Bengali desserts. Decades back in Mumbai, on special occasions, I used to visit one particular Bengali sweet shop in Malad West in the western suburbs.

From there, I would purchase a variety of sweets or mishti as they are called in Bengali, and stock my refrigerator with them. The humble, yet delicious Misti Doi would undeniably be one of the sweets that was a must in that list.

Making Mishti Doi is not the same as making your simple dahi or curd. The procedure is different. Firstly, you have to thicken and reduce the milk.

Then, add the palm jaggery. Eventually, you’ll have to wait till the milk is warm, and then add the curd. Post this, you will have to keep the mixture for some hours to set completely.

While there are some variations of making this sweet treat, my recipe is simple, easy and a no bake version. You don’t need to use caramelised sugar, evaporated milk or sweetened condensed milk. You only need 3 essential ingredients – milk, palm jaggery, curd starter and an optional cardamom powder.

For Mishti Doi recipe, it is best to use earthen bowls or pans or earthen pots. Why? As I said earlier, earthen bowls have permeable walls which help absorb the moisture from the doi, in turn making it nicely thick.

You will not find any flavorings added to this well-known Bengali dessert. However, I feel some hints of cardamom powder impart a lovely aroma as well as flavor to the Mishti Doi.

Fermenting the Mishti Doi recipe takes more time as compared to making yogurt or curd. The timing also varies with the local temperature conditions.

If you live in cold climate zones, then keep the sweetened curd in a warm place in your house. For example, near a heater or gas stove, or inside a lit oven. If keeping in an oven, ensure the oven is only lit and not getting heated up.

Since an authentic recipe of Mishti Doi has date palm jaggery (nolen/khejur gur) in it, it is also primarily a winter delicacy and considered as a healthier dessert option than the rest.

Nolen gur is iron-rich. Additionally the micro-nutrients in it help to increase the immunity in the body to fight against infections. Consuming it also helps to curb sore eyes and cramped calf muscles.

Step-by-Step Guide

How to make Mishti Doi

Boil Milk

1. Take 1 liter whole milk or full fat milk in a heavy kadai (wok) or pan. Keep the flame to low or medium-low and begin to heat milk.

heating milk in a heavy pan for mishti doi recipe.

2. Stir occasionally while the milk is getting heated. Let the milk come to a boil.

milk coming to a boil for mishti doi recipe.

3. Then, continue to simmer the milk on low to medium-low heat. Stir often while the milk is getting simmered.

stirring and simmering milk for mishti doi recipe.

4. This continuous simmering will reduce the milk.

milk getting reduced in the pan.

5. Stir often. Also, scrape the dried milk solids from the sides and add to the simmering milk.

milk simmering and getting reduced.

6. Simmer milk until it reduces to ⅓ or ½ of the original volume.

milk simmering and getting reduced.

7. Remove the pan from heat and let the milk cool for about 8 to 9 minutes. Scrape the dried milk solids from the sides and add to the milk.

cooling hot milk.

Make Mishti Doi

8. Meanwhile, finely chop or grate 175 to 180 grams palm jaggery. You will need ¾ cup finely chopped palm jaggery.

chopped palm jaggery on a wooden chopping board for mishti doi recipe.

9. After 8 or 9 minutes, add the chopped palm jaggery to the milk. When adding jaggery, the temperature of milk can be 60 to 65 degrees Celsius.

adding chopped palm jaggery to the reduced milk.

10. Mix very well till all the jaggery is dissolved.

mixing palm jaggery well in the milk.

11. Add ½ teaspoon green cardamom powder. Mix well and let this milk mixture become warm.

After adding jaggery, the temperature of milk will reduce. So, you can check the temperature after adding milk.

cardamom powder added to jaggery-milk mixture.

12. The milk should be warm – meaning if you dip your finger in the milk, your finger should feel comfortably warm, but not hot.

If you have a cooking thermometer, you can check the temperature. It should be between 40 to 44 degrees Celsius.

checking the temperature of the milk mixture with a cooking thermometer.

13. Now, add 2 tablespoons curd (or yogurt starter).

You could also use about 1 to 1.5 tablespoon of greek yogurt starter. Simply whisk the greek yogurt (hung curd) in a bowl with 2 to 3 tablespoons of the sweetened thick milk mixture until smooth; before adding to the entire milk mixture.

adding curd to the milk-jaggery mixture.

14. With a whisk, mix very well. The curd should dissolve in the milk. If you want you can even whisk the curd before you add.

mixing the curd in the milk-jaggery mixture with a whisk.

Set Mishti Doi

15. Now, pour the curd mixture in earthen or terracotta bowls, or earthen handi.

curd mixture poured in earthen bowl and handi.

16. Cover with a lid or seal with aluminium foil.

handi covered with a lid and bowls covered with aluminium foil.

17. Keep in a warm place for the Mishti Doi to set. Mishti doi takes longer to set than curd or yogurt.

The timing will also vary with the temperature in your city. Since it is cool and not hot where I live, it took 23 hours for the curd to set.

Thus, you can keep for 7 to 24 hours depending on how hot or warm it is in your city.

mishti doi set in earthenware.

18. When set, it will look firm with a gentle wobble. Refrigerate the Mishti Doi. Later serve Mishti Doi cold, as a dessert after your meals.

mishti doi served in an earthen bowl with some scooped in a spoon and text layover.

Serving & Storage Suggestions

Opt to serve Mishti Doi as is without any toppings or garnishes. It tastes delicious. But if you want more jazz, consider adding some garnishes of sliced nuts like almonds, pistachios or cashews.

Mishti Doi keeps well when refrigerated for about 5 to 6 days. Always refrigerate and do not keep at room temperature as this may risk it becoming way too fermented, overly sour and also getting spoiled.

Origin of Mishti Doi

While it is obvious that most of us know Mishti Doi as the quintessential sweetened yogurt variety, hailing from Bengal and how Bengalis really take pride in this fermented dessert; it is also true that there are many stories that may be related to its origin.

As I also mentioned earlier, all you need for a Mishti Doi recipe is milk, palm jaggery/sugar and curd culture (sometimes flavorings like cardamom powder can also be added). However, to begin with, one story relates it to the times when curd came in light in Bulgaria.

According to food historians, back in those days, the local Bulgarian tribes used bags made of animal skin, put the curd in it and offered it to people with great power or authority. These bags used to help the curd ferment. This love of Bulgarians for yogurt travelled to other parts of the globe.

With the East India Company and the Britishers arriving in India, yogurt reached the Indian subcontinent. Here, the authentic Mishti Doi took birth in the Bogra district. From there, it spread to other states. It is also claimed that a certain Bose family of Sherpur district pioneered the Mishti Doi recipe.

Expert Tips

  1. Full fat milk or whole milk is the best option to prepare Mishti Doi. Using other varieties or low-fat or toned milk may result in curdling of the milk while making it.
  2. For a traditional look and flavor, I would suggest using date palm jaggery. If you don’t have it, you can use brown sugar or granulated sugar as well.
  3. I have added cardamom powder as I like the subtle flavor of it in the curd. You can skip using it, if you wish to.
  4. Earthen or terracotta bowls/pots/handi should be preferably used to set the Mishti Doi.
  5. You have to keep the doi in a warm place to set. It will take longer time to set as compared to your regular curd. The timing also varies with the temperature of your city.

More Bengali Sweets To Try!

Please be sure to rate the recipe in the recipe card or leave a comment below if you have made it. For more vegetarian inspirations, Sign Up for my emails or follow me on Instagram, Youtube, Facebook, Pinterest or Twitter.

mishti doi recipe, bengali nolen gurer mishti doi recipe

Mishti Doi Recipe

Mishti Doi is a classic and traditional Bengali sweet made with milk, curd (yogurt) culture and jaggery or sugar. The jaggery used traditionally to make Mishti Doi is palm jaggery (palmyra sugar). In Bengali language 'Mishti' means sweet and 'Doi' is curd or yogurt. In Hindi language this sweet treat can be called Meetha Dahi.
5 from 21 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Cuisine Bengali
Course Desserts, Sweets
Diet Vegetarian
Difficulty Level Moderate
Servings 4
Units

Ingredients

  • 1 litre whole milk
  • 175 to 180 grams palm jaggery ¾ cup finely chopped – can swap with brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon green cardamom powder
  • 2 tablespoons Curd or a yogurt starter

Instructions
 

Boiling Milk

  • Take the whole milk or full fat milk in a heavy kadai (wok) or pan. Keep flame to low or medium-low and begin to heat milk.
  • Stir occasionally when the milk is getting heated. Let the milk come to a boil.
  • Then continue to simmer the milk on a low to medium-low flame stirring often.
  • Scrape the dried milk solids from the sides and add to the simmering milk.
  • Simmer milk till it reduces to ⅓ or ½ of its original volume.
  • Keep the kadai (wok) down and let the milk cool for about 8 to 9 minutes.

Making Mishti Doi

  • Meanwhile finely chop or grate the palm jaggery. You will need ¾ cup finely chopped palm jaggery.
  • After 8 or 9 minutes, add the chopped palm jaggery. When adding jaggery, the temperature of milk can be 60 to 65 degrees Celsius.
  • Mix very well till all the chopped jaggery is dissolved.
  • Add the cardamom powder. Mix well and let the milk become warm.
  • Check the temperature of milk. It should be warm – meaning if you dip your finger in the milk, your finger should feel comfortably warm but not hot.
    If you have a cooking thermometer, you can check the temperature. It should be between 40 to 44 degrees Celsius.
  • At this point add 2 tablespoons curd or yogurt starter.
  • With a whisk mix very well. The curd should dissolve in the milk. If you want you can even whisk the curd before you add.

Setting Mishti Doi

  • Now pour the doi mixture in earthen or terracotta bowls or earthen handi.
  • Cover with a lid or seal with aluminium foil.
  • Keep in a warm place for the mishti doi to set. Mishti Doi takes longer to set than curd. The timing will also vary with the temperature in your city. So you can keep for 7 to 24 hours. 
  • When it is set, the Mishti Doi will look firm with a gentle wobble. Place the bowls in the refrigerator.
  • Alway store Mishti Doi in the fridge. It keeps well for 5 to 6 days when refrigerated.
  • Serve Mishti Doi cold or chilled with your meals or as a dessert.

Notes

  • For best results, make Mishti Doi with whole milk. Try not to make this traditional sweet with toned or low-fat milk as these may curdle or split when jaggery is added. 
  • The green cardamom powder can be skipped entirely. 
  • Keep in mind that the Mishti Doi will ferment and set at a hot or warm temperature for 7 to 9 hours. If you live in a cool or cold place, it will take more time to set.

Nutrition Info (Approximate Values)

Nutrition Facts
Mishti Doi Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 200 Calories from Fat 81
% Daily Value*
Fat 9g14%
Saturated Fat 5g31%
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.3g
Monounsaturated Fat 2g
Cholesterol 32mg11%
Sodium 103mg4%
Potassium 405mg12%
Carbohydrates 22g7%
Fiber 0.1g0%
Sugar 13g14%
Protein 9g18%
Vitamin A 428IU9%
Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) 0.1mg7%
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) 0.4mg24%
Vitamin B3 (Niacin) 0.3mg2%
Vitamin B6 0.2mg10%
Vitamin B12 1µg17%
Vitamin C 0.1mg0%
Vitamin D 3µg20%
Vitamin E 0.1mg1%
Vitamin K 1µg1%
Calcium 334mg33%
Vitamin B9 (Folate) 1µg0%
Iron 0.04mg0%
Magnesium 33mg8%
Phosphorus 285mg29%
Zinc 1mg7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

This Mishti Doi recipe from the archives was first published on January 2018. It has been updated and republished on March 2024.

Share This Recipe:

WhatsAppPinShares811

Meet Dassana

Welcome to Dassana's Veg Recipes. I share vegetarian recipes from India & around the World. Having been cooking for decades and with a professional background in cooking & baking, I help you to make your cooking journey easier with my tried and tested recipes showcased with step by step photos & plenty of tips & suggestions.

Get My Secrets to Great Indian Food
Sign up for my FREE Beginners Guide to Delicious Indian Cooking

More Vegetarian Recipes You'll Love

Comments are closed.

5 from 21 votes (18 ratings without comment)

10 Comments

  1. I have failed this recipe 2 times. After following your recipe I completed it! I love Bengali sweets. Mithai cake I will try next Greetings from Canada

  2. Hi , thx for such a lovely recipe 😊
    Can we add brown sugar or regular jaggery?
    Thx again

  3. I tried mishti doi recipe before a couple of months. But after addjng the curd it curdled. Even the curd was fresh. I used powdered jaggery. What’s the palm jaggery? Plz let me know. What was the mistake i did? Actually I like Bengali food. Especially their sweets.5 stars

    1. asiya, for making mishti doi, always use full fat milk or full cream milk. adding curd to toned milk or low fat milk can curdle it. secondly add curd when the milk is warm. powdered jaggery can be used. palm jaggery is jaggery made from date palm sap.

      same here. even i like bengali food and bengali sweets.