Adhirasam (Athirasam)

Adhirasam or Athirasam is a typical, traditional Tamilnadu sweet item that is usually made during festivals. Jaggery is a main ingredient used here, instead of cane sugar. Adhirasam is popular mainly in the Southern districts of Tamilnadu and also in the Chettinad area.


Cooking Time: 2 hours (over 2 days).

No of pieces: 20


  1. Raw rice: 500 grams (3 cups)
    2. Powdered Jaggery (unrefined sugar): 400 grams ( 3 cups)
    3. Cardamom: 8
    4. Water (for making syrup):  3/4 cup
    5. Ghee (Clarified butter): 75 grams
    6. Oil (preferably sunflower): 750 ml


Soak raw rice in water for an hour. Drain water and using a blender, make into smooth fine flour. You will get nearly 6 cups of rice flour. Powder the cardamom and add to the flour. For 2 cups raw rice flour use one cup powdered jaggery to make syrup.

Take 3/4  cup water in a pan, add the jaggery and simmer over medium heat till it becomes syrup. Strain the syrup to remove large particles and let simmer again over low heat.  You must get the syrup flavor and a “one thread” consistency. Pour a drop or two in a cup of water. If the syrup settles down into a ball at the bottom of the cup of water without disintegrating, you have reached the desired consistency. Remove from stove and add the wet rice flour with the ghee. Mix the flour and  the syrup well and set aside for 1 – 3 days, covering the mouth of the container with a thin cloth.

Heat oil in a deep-fry pan over medium flame. Apply some oil on a strip of banana leaf.  Make balls of the mixture from the previous step and press them into round adhirasams on the leaf and gently drop them into the hot oil. Use a “poondhi” (boondhi) ladle to remove the adhirasam when they are fried to a deep golden brown. To remove excess oil use a thick flat ladle to press down the athirasam and squeeze the oil out.

Adhirasam (Athirasam) 2

Tips: Adhirasams can be stored for up to a month in airtight containers. The rice flour should not become dry when it is added to the jaggery syrup. You will get about 20 adhirasams for half kg rice.

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