Think carrot and all we imagine is a nutrient-dense vegetable packed with antioxidants and Vitamin A.
Thinking further, we relate all healthy stuff like fitness and diet with this tuber.
There is no doubt that foodies can experiment and churn out creative dishes with the blandest of produce. If they can prepare mouth-watering desserts with bottle gourd and lentils, do you think carrots can lag? Thanks to such creative chefs, we have delicacies like carrot cake, carrot cheesecake, carrot barfi, and carrot halwa to felicitate our taste buds.
Today, let’s talk about carrot halwa, famously called Gajar ka Halwa all over the world.
This rich delicacy is such a favorite that my mouth waters every time I think of it!
For beginners, Gajar ka Halwa, popularly known as gajorer halwa, gajar pak, gajrela, or carrot halwa is a carrot-based yummy dessert from the Indian subcontinent. It is made by placing small carrot shreds in a pan containing water, milk, and sugar, and cooking this mixture while stirring at regular intervals.
Taste of Gajar ka Halwa
Gajar ka Halwa is a rich pudding-like delicacy that satiates your taste buds heavenly. It is garnished with cardamom powder and chock-full of rich dry fruits thus making it a perfect winter treat.
Health Benefits of Gajar ka Halwa
With carrot as its main ingredient, it is obvious that this sweet dish is loaded with health benefits.
Carrots are great detoxifying food and contain liver cleansing properties.
Gajar ka Halwa can be stored for long periods. Therefore, it can provide rich nutrition and instant energy.
It is believed that Carrot halwa rejuvenates the cells of the body.
How to prepare
The traditional Gajar ka Halwa recipe uses red carrots, full-fat milk, ghee, and sugar as its ingredients. However, you can replace milk with condensed milk or khoya (evaporated milk solids).
If looking for a healthier low-calorie option, use low-fat milk and jaggery in place of sugar.
- Carrots- 8 to 9 medium-size
- Full-fat milk- 4 cups
- Ghee- 4 tbsp
- Sugar- as per taste (10-12 tbsp)
- Cardamom powder-⅓ to ½ teaspoon
- Chopped cashews, almond, and pistachios as per taste
- Raisins as per taste
- Saffron- few strands
- Wash the carrots well
- Grate the carrots in the food processor or with a hand grater.
- Take a heavy bottom pan and add all the grated carrots along with milk. Cook this mixture on a medium flame, stirring regularly so that milk does not stick to the bottom and on the sides of the pan
- Keep cooking till the milk reduces to 75% of the original quantity
- Add 4 tablespoons of ghee now. Mix well and add sugar
- Add cardamom powder and mix well. Continue to cook on a low-medium flame by stirring regularly
- The mixture will start to thicken and reduce more till it reaches the consistency of a pudding
- At this point, add chopped nuts, raisins, and saffron. Mix well and let it simmer on a low flame till this mixture becomes dry
- Your Gajar ka Halwa is ready when the milk evaporates completely and milk solids are seen. Serve hot and enjoy the sumptuous dessert
Tips to keep in mind for preparing the best Gajar ka Halwa
- Red carrots are the preferred choice but one can also use orange carrots. Ensure that the carrots are tender and juicy and not fibrous and dense. Soft and juicy carrots are easy to grate.
- Use a heavy bottom pan or iron Kadai to make the halwa so that it does not get burnt. You can also use a non-stick pan.
How to store
You can store Gajar Ka Halwa for up to 10 -12 days in the refrigerator. Just microwave it for 30 seconds before serving.
If you have guests coming on a short notice and have no time to prepare a sweet dish, try ready-to-eat Brar Gajar Halwa. Your guests are going to love you for this one!
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