Classic Gajar ka Halwa/Carrot Pudding

Hello and welcome to nikkieskitchen.com! This being my first post, I thought to start this in a traditional Indian way which is to begin anything new with sweets. Have you ever tried this amazing carrot pudding traditionally known as Gajar ka halwa? It is one of the classic irresistible Indian dessert that never fails to tempt anyone when made right! 🙂

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Kuch meetha ho jaye..😋

This popular pudding is usually made in north Indian homes especially on a festive occasion. However being a halwa lover, I do not wait for a specific occasion and cook it whenever I feel like. You can use any carrot available in the market just as I do irrespective of the season including the orange Ooty carrots. There are a couple different ways of making this halwa: a traditional method using whole milk, my mother’s rich version using khoya and lastly a quick one using the condensed milk. I prefer the first method of whole milk because it is easily available in every home as compared to khoya and condensed milk. So let’s do it!

Health perk: Carrots are low in calories and high in fiber, plus they’re loaded with disease-fighting antioxidants!

 INGREDIENTS AND INITIAL PREPARATION

This halwa can be made with limited ingredients consisting of carrots, sugar, ghee or unsalted butter, milk and dry fruits. It is flavored with cardamom powder or seeds. Below are the required quantities for each ingredient for 4-5 servings:

  • 1.50 lbs or 750 gram carrot (4-5 medium sized as shown in the picture. Wash, grate and set them aside)
  • 1 ½ cup or 900 ml whole milk
  • 1/2 cup or 12-15 tbsp sugar
  • 3-4 saffron strands
  • 8 green cardamom or choti elachi (4 skinned seed and 4 crushed to powder form)
  • 3-4 tbsp ghee or clarified or unsalted butter
  • Handful mixed cashew nuts. Part them from center & roast on low heat. (Optional: you may also use cashews as is without roasting.)
  • Raisins & grated almonds as shown in the picture (for garnishing)
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Course: Dessert   Preparation time : 10-15 mins   Cook time: 2 hours   Serving: 4-5

RECIPE IN A NUTSHELL

Pour a spoon of ghee or butter in a heavy bottom pot set at medium flame and add skinned cardamom seeds. Add grated carrots and begin to stir. Add milk and let the mixture cook until the milk has completely evaporated. This takes about 40 minutes so you can enjoy your favorite season on Netflix in between however keep stirring occasionally to prevent the mixture from sticking at the bottom. Add all remaining ghee and stir well. Lastly, add sugar and powdered cardamom and stir. Sugar would release a lot of moisture. Cook until half the moisture evaporates and carrot appears to be dry. Sugar also acts as a color enhancer. Continue to cook until the halwa thickens. If you like you can add grated khoya at this stage (optional). Again add a spoon of ghee and all nuts except almond, stir and cook for last 15-20 mins. Turn off the gas and Garnish carrot halwa with almonds. Serve it warm.

STEP BY STEP RECIPE WITH PHOTOS

1. Wash carrots nicely. Peel them off and grate in a food processor or with a hand grater as shown in the picture.

2. Put a heavy bottom pot on medium flame and add a spoon of ghee, let it heat up until the ghee melts. Add seed cardamom and stir it for 5 seconds.

3. Add grated carrots and stir for 15-20 mins. Meanwhile, if not already done in preparation stage, at this point roast the cashews in parallel on another burner until they turn light brownish/cream in color. Set them aside.

(Tip: You may also roast the cashew in a microwave for 10-15 secs)

4. Pour one & half cup of whole milk and Saffron strands to the mixture. Stir well and cover the pot with the lid slightly open as shown in the picture. Let the mixture cook for 1.5 hrs or until the milk has fully evaporated and mixture appears to be thick and almost dry. Stir occasionally at approximately 10-15 mnts intervals to prevent bottom sticking. 

5. See the consistency in the picture. Add 4-5 tbsp ghee or unsalted butter. Turn the flame to low and stir occasionally for another 30 mnts. 

6. Add 12-15 tbsp sugar along with skinned powdered cardamom to the mixture. Continue to stir until the mixture becomes dry.

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7. Add all nuts except almond to the mixture and a spoon of ghee. Mix well.

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8. Now pudding is ready to serve. Garnish it with shredded almond. Serve it warm or at room temperature with or without vanilla ice-cream.

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  • You can refrigerate the halwa for 5-6 days.
  • You may buy any type of carrots however the best halwa is made with tender and juicy ones.
  • Richness of Halwa comes from the ghee and milk. You may increase the richness by adding more ghee and milk. (over & above the quantity of milk & ghee shown under ingredients).
  • Good quality pot or pan is recommended to prevent stickness at the bottom.

 

 Thank you for stopping by! 🙂

Next recipe will be published soon!

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