Farin Nisa

When it comes to food, Farin Nisa has a bit of a sweet tooth. So it was only fitting that she chose a pebbled shape sweet known as peda, as her favourite recipe to share.

As she puts the plate of peda on the table and turns around, her son Aydin swoops in and grabs some. Before not long, the plate is empty with all the peda gone!

Farin moved to Auckland from Fiji with her family when she was 10 years old.

She met her husband in 2008 and they decided to make the move to Christchurch in 2018 and do some sightseeing of the country along the way. After a few wrong turns and getting lost in the South Island, the family managed to settle into their temporary rental in central Christchurch City, as they were struggling to find a permanent home to move into.

Eventually someone offered them a three-bedroom home in Faringdon and Farin knew this was their new home – her name was even included in the name of the subdivision.

On moving day, Farin could not stop laughing all the way from Hornby to Rolleston because with no truck to move their stuff, they had to carry it in their car with the mattress on top.

Once settled, Farin says she loves living in Rolleston because it reminds her of living in Fiji as a kid and she’s happy her kids will get to experience being closer to nature and feeling safe walking to the park, the library and the Selwyn Aquatic Centre.

“(In Fiji) where we used to climb mountains, we used to play with animals, we used to be so connected with nature, when I moved to Auckland all that was just taken away from me.”

When asked what is found on her dinner table, Farin says her husband is the chef, cooking all types of curries, but gave her specific instructions not to share these recipes.

Instead Farin shares her Peda recipe but warns that you must roll up your sleeves before starting.

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Peda recipe

“Now this is a very messy and sticky recipe, but you’ll be glad you did it.

I want this recipe to be out there, because it’s so quick and easy, kids love it and it just brings brightness to any occasion. It’s used on every occasional, like Diwali, Eid and weddings. It brings so much sweetness.”



  • 1 can of condensed milk
  • 2 cups of milk powder
  • 2 cups of caster sugar
  • Butter or ghee
  • ¼ teaspoon of nutmeg grounded, and cardamon
  • Pink food colouring – if you wish to make them colourful

In a big bowl, add the milk powder and the condensed milk and mix into a dough.

Then add one cup of caster sugar.

“The caster sugar is very important because when you are going to bite into this sweet, you are going to have that crumby feeling – and if you don’t add the caster sugar it’s going to be very flat sticky and powdery texture in your mouth, so you want that roughness in there.”

Mix it all again into a dough. You will need to work fast because the condense milk will harden if left too long.

Once you make the dough, put a little bit of ghee or butter in a tiny bowl and rub it over the palm of your hands, so your hands are slippery for when you shape your peda mixture.

From the dough, take about one teaspoon out and roll it on your palm into a pebble shape.

Once it is shaped, put it straight into a tray with caster sugar and coat the peda in the caster sugar.

Repeat process until you have a little tray of pedas – “and then you’ll have to hide these because your kids are going to steal these!”

You can decorate the peda with edible silver balls or add a drop of pink food colouring.