Nov 12, 2007

Carrot Halwa

Diwali Day 1
Diwali dawned this year with a flutter of excitement for me. I had spent the previous two days planning the sweets that I would make for the festival (with help from my mom ofcourse). I had come up with the final three. The first of the distinguished line up was carrot halwa. Carrot is naturally sweet which makes it a good choice, even as a vegetable, to be used in making a sweet dish be it a halwa, payasam or cake. Due to the lack of grater I had to use some innovation - used the peeler and blender combination to get thin, small flakes of carrot. Lack of some dressy ingredients dint put a dent in the taste of my halwa (but I am going to give you a complete list of what should go in). Go ahead and try this dish, you will be left with sweet satisfaction.

What you need to make Carrot Halwa
  • Carrots - 4 big ones
  • Milk - 2 cups, the size u would serve in a thali
  • Sugar - 1 cup, more depending on the sweetness you can take
  • Cardamom - 2
  • Saffron - 4-5 strands
  • Cashewnuts - 10, broken into small pieces
  • Raisins - 10
  • Ghee/Butter - 1 tbsp
Preparation to make Carrot Halwa
  • Peel the skin off the carrots, cut off the edges and then Grate the carrots.
  • Break the cardamom pods and get the innards out
  • Break cashewnuts into small pieces. Fry till golden brown in ghee/butter.
Method to make Carrot Halwa
  • Place a heavy bottomed vessel on a lighted stove. Put the ghee/butter into it and heat a little till it melts.
  • Add the grated carrots to this and sautee for some time, say 5 minutes. Mix such that ghee is spread over all of the carrot.
  • Add the milk to this and allow this to boil on simmer. Keep the mixture boiling till carrots become real soft.
  • Now add the sugar and mix well. Continue to boil this till the sugar is well blended.
  • At this point of time you must not have any milky liquid in te vessel. (If you do, my trick is to pour it out into a glass, its a tasty drink).
  • Put in the cardamom, saffron, cashewnuts and raisins.
  • Keep boiling (all the time keeping the stove on simmer) till all is blended well.

(This is the work-in-progress photograph of Halwa)

My fundas

  • You can add condensed milk or even khoya when most of the milk has evaporated. This gives an excellent rich taste to the halwa.
  • You could add roasted almonds and pistachio also the halwa for that special something.
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