Saturday, April 8, 2017

G: Gajar ka halwa #AtoZChallenge

Can a series on desserts ever be missing the gajar ka halwa? Impossible, I thought. Who could ever imagine that carrots could be so tasty. Yes, Gajar ka halwa is made out of carrots. My mother used the dark purple carrots (when they were available) in winter but it works just as well with the orange ones too.
One word of warning: It is rich! And time consuming if you have to make the Khoya (evaporated milk) at home like our mothers used to.

First, the khoya: 1.25 litres milk
1. Pour the milk in a large thick bottomed pan and bring milk to a boil.
2. Lower the flame and simmer the milk, stir at intervals whilst the milk is simmering.
3. The milk will froth many times, while it is simmering. Scrape the milk solids from the sides of the pan and add to the milk.
4. The milk will continue to reduce and thicken as its being simmered on a low flame.
5. Continue to simmer and stir till the milk thickens and has reduced to such an extent that you can see bubbles bursting in the reduced milk. keep stirring continuously as the reduced milk can burn or become too brown.
6. When the bubbles stop, switch off the flame and scrape the sides of the bowl and add it to the khoya. Let it cool.

This process will take about 2 hours.

Or, you can buy the khoya from a sweet shop. I know of someone who used milk powder instead of khoya. Please don't, it is NOT the same thing.

Once the khoya business is sorted, making gajar halwa is pretty simple!

You will need;

2 kg carrots (red or purple or orange)
500 ml cold milk (warm milk tends to curdle while cooking with carrot)
250 g khoya (the above recipe is for 250 g)
Sugar to taste
1 tbsp ghee

  • shred carrots
  • Boil the milk and shredded carrots together
  • Simmer. When the carrots are halfway cooked, add sugar (about 3/4 tbsp, you can taste and see that it is to your liking) and ghee. 
  • Cook till the water from the milk dries completely, the carrots should be fully cooked. 
  • Simmer some more and add the khoya. 
  • If you wish, you can add a handful of raisins and cashew at the end. 
  • Serve hot.  

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