Gajar ka Halwa – A Culinary Delight
When we talk is about Indian desserts, one name that undoubtedly comes into every person’s mind is the traditional Gajar ka halwa. The rich, healthy, delicious Gajar ka halwa is probably the second most popular halwa after Sooji (semolina) ka Halwa. The reason could be the seasonal availability. Carrots, in India, are usually available in winters and so is the halwa. Whereas Sooji ka halwa is available throughout the year.
Gajar Ka Halwa is a popular dessert famous all across the continent. The dessert hails from Northern Parts of the Indian sub-continent. The dish is very rich as it requires lots and lots of milk, crème and dry fruits.
Recipe No. 1
- 1 kg Carrots
- 1 litre Milk
- 1 teaspoon Cardamom seeds
- 3/4 cup Water
- 3 tablespoons Ghee
- 2 tablespoons Raisins
- 2 tablespoons Almonds
- 2 tablespoons Pistachios
- 450 grams Sugar
- Wash and grate the carrots. Soak the raisins in water for 30 minutes. Blanch and shred the nuts.
- Put the water to boil, when it starts boiling add the grated carrots. Cook for 5-7 minutes.
- Add the milk. Cook on a low flame for 1 hour stirring occasionally. Add sugar, mix well and cook till the sugar has dissolved and all the milk has been absorbed.
- Add ghee and simmer for 2-3 minutes. Add the slightly crushed cardamoms and the raisins. Mix well.
- Remove the gajjar halwa from heat and arrange in a serving dish. Garnish with almonds and pistachios. Serve cold, hot or at room temperature.
Recipe No. 2
- 1 kg (just over 2 pounds) of fresh grated carrots
- 2 tins (400 gms each) sweetened condensed milk
- 1 cup full-cream milk
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup ghee
- 200 gms khoya (thickened milk)
- 75 gms raisins/sultanas
- 75 gms almonds blanched and slivered
- 75 gms pistachios slivered
- Mix the carrots, condensed milk, milk and sugar in a large pan and cook on a medium flame till all the milk thickens and reduces.
- Add the khoya and ghee to the carrot-milk mix and fry till the carrots turn a to dark orange color.
- Add the dried raisins, almonds and pistachios, mix well and turn off fire.
- Allow the halwa to cool slightly and serve in bowls with a dollop of vanilla ice cream each (optional).