Hyderabadi delicacies like biryani, qubani ka meetha and kaddu ki kheer are certain to tickle the taste buds, but there is a lesser-known sweet dish – Badam ki Jali – that often goes undetected by foodies.

Primarily made with almonds, cashews, and sugar, the recipe of this confection is known to have been passed on from one generation to another.

One of the few remaining families that make this dish in its authentic form is the Hussaini. Some 60 years back, Syeda Aijaz Fatima brought the recipe with her when she moved to Hyderabad. She passed the recipe to her daughter-in-law Nafees.

Nafees added an ashrafi design, which is achieved by pressing the dough between two Nizami coins to get their inscriptions. She passed down the recipe to her daughter-in-law Nasreen.

Explaining the process of preparing badam ki jali, Nasreen says, “We soak almonds in hot water and then dry them. Cashews and almonds are then ground into flour and then made into dough with sugar.”

“The mould is then given different shapes and kept for baking. The whole process takes around 4-5 hours. The texture of the sweet is like cookies but the taste is similar to Kaju Katli,” she adds.

Nasreen introduced new colours, shapes and sizes like stars, betel leaves, flowers and fruits, to the recipe.

When Aisha, the fourth-generation entrant, took over six years ago, she expanded the deliveries outside the city and country.

“We care about our reputation and family legacy more than anything,” says software engineer Aisha, who left her job in Dubai to continue the family’s legacy.

Today, the women of the house run ‘Imperial Sweet House’, with an average daily turnover of Rs 20,000 and customers from across India and abroad.