The summer is almost at its end. One can feel it in the air…the slight chill in the evening air reminds you of the change of seasons. The leaves will soon change their colors. It’s that time of the year when everything around you is just perfect. Not too much heat, nor cold… green around with hints of the colorful fall ahead.Its time for a new recipe in my blog for all the sweet-lovers.
Gajar halwa or carrot pudding has been childhood favorite delicacy made during the winters. But since we get all kinds of vegetable and fruits throughout the year its easy to have whatever you like whenever you want. So here I am, with a tray full of carrots that I had purchased to make a carrot cake, but ended up making carrot pudding.
- Carrots – 1 kg or 2 lbs
- Ghee (preferably), butter or oil – 2+1 tbsp
- Milk – 2-3 cups (approx)
- Sugar – 1/2 to 1 cup or to taste
- Green cardamom powder – 1/4 tsp
- Cashews (halved) – 1 tbsp
- Raisins – 1 tbsp
- Khoya or Mawa – 1 cup (optional)
- Coconut flakes – for garnishing (optional)
- Peel, wash and grate the carrots.
- Heat 2 tbsp of ghee, oil or butter in a thick bottomed pan.
- Add the grated carrots and saute for 5 minutes.
- Add milk and cook on medium heat till the carrots are cooked well. Keep stirring in between.
- Add sugar and grated khoya (optional) and sprinkle the cardamom powder.
- Add the left over ghee, oil or butter (1 tbsp) and mix well. This is optional.
- Cook till all the moisture and milk has evaporated.
- Add the halved cashews and raisins and mix well again.
- Garnish with coconut flakes. (optional)
I remember the winter holidays in my school. Almost more than a week of chilling cold weather and basking in the pleasant sunshine while the next door aunty (we had so many aunties nearby…) would visit us with a bowl of something… someday it would be dhokla.. some day paneer. It was during one of these visits that I first came across this sweet dish – Moong dal ka halwa. I have a sweet tooth and just loved this. Till I was in school (at Rihand Nagar, UP – a small NTPC township) I often got chance to taste this dish, thanks to the aunties around, though my mom never made it. However for a long time I had just forgotten about it.
It was one of the snowing days in Connecticut that reminded me of it. And there I was on a ISD call to my mom to get hold of that recipe from any of those aunties. I knew an internet search could give me that but I trusted my childhood taste buds more than anything. So… thanks to “Totle auny” I ended up making this dessert. And it was awesome… though full of calories but I chose to ignore that thought…
- Split (Yellow) Moong dal – 1 cup
- Water – 2 cups
- Sugar – 1 cup or to taste
- Oil / Clarified Butter/Ghee – 2 tbsp
- Khoya – 1/2 cup (if you don’t have you can exclude it)
- Milk – 2 cups
- Cashewnuts and Raisins – for garnishing
- Roast the Moong Dal lightly and then let it cool and grind it to a powder.
- Soak the powdered dal in 2 cups of water for a few hours, better if overnight.
- You can also soak the dal in water overnight and grind it to a paste.
- Heat ghee, oil or butter in a thick bottomed pan and fry the paste on medium to low heat till it changes color to a golden brown.
- Add sugar, milk and khoya to the paste and stir in continuously.
- Keep stirring till the mixture thickens to the desired consistency.
- Garnish with the dry nuts and raisins.