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Monday, January 23, 2012

Doodhiya Gazar Halwa/ Milky Carrot Fudge

Halwaaa....and wo bhi Gazar ka, I think 80 % of Indians who have tasted this rich dessert cannot keep themselves away from it after a divine sight. I still remember the childhood days when we used to go for weddings and the party following that, all people would look for (especially kids) either the 'mithai' or ' chaat', and if you were lucky by grace that night/evening, you would certainly find some Halwa, more if the wedding function happened to land in winters. Whatever the Halwa type was, whether it was Gazar or Moong Dal, it never mattered. Even till date, I crave for those marriage ceremonies and the food served then after which we hardly get to attend now ( say once a year or so). 

If I ask you in general, who's the best cook you've met in your life, most of you would end up saying 'Mumma'; even the best chefs say that and certainly that is just so right. No one can ever cook like your mom does because the phenomenal ingredient she imbibes in the recipe is her selfless love. I love you Mumma, and just wish I could stay with you for some time now, enjoying aapke haath ka khana and of course some wintery February weddings in the city of lakes. But after marriage, this is certainly a dream that comes true just once or twice in 365 long days and the darling craving never goes.
Well, ab agar baat 'Maa' ke haath ke khane ki hai, so sabse pehle mujhe Gajar ka Halwa khana hai. Though I always make a list before I go to my mom's place and everyday she confirms for which dish is still left, and the list is generally so long that it doesn't end even by the last day, and then.... I see her making all my favorite sweets and the things missed from the list a day before I leave and believe it, they travel with me all the way with my already over-weighed luggage, and I usually pay extra for it with a smile hiding behind my face.
Now, coming to the focus point, Gazar Ka Halwa, I generally see people adding 'Khoya/ Mava' to it, and that is a common way of preparing it actually. But I always saw my mom cook it in a slightly different way and believe me, it tastes better and creamier because the whole gazar is cooked in a lot of milk till the milk almost dries up and becomes khoya/mava. By doing this, the carrots go very soft and they drink milk like drunkards left with bottomless beer...he he... that's a funny comparison though! :P
For this reason, I call this Halwa specifically as ' Doodhiya Gazar Halwa/ Milky Carrot Fudge'. Now for sure, we don't use any external/ market bought khoya/mava here, and the entire process takes a long long time, but seriously, each and every minute of your patience here is worth it and you will agree with this just after a scoop in your mouth.

DOODHIYA GAZAR HALWA/ MILKY CARROT FUDGE

Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 40-50 minutes
Serves: 4

Did you know?
- Amazon bookstore includes over 200 books with the title "carrot" in them.
- Carrots have a higher sugar content than any other vegetable except the sugar beet.
- Carrots are one of the rare vegetables which are more nutritious cooked than raw.


Ingredients:
1. Carrots ( I used the orange ones here, because I could not find the red ones): 6 (big and stout) or 1 kg Carrots by weight
2. Milk (full cream): 750ml - 1 litre
3. Ghee/ Clarified Butter: 1/2 cup
4. Sugar: 8 tbs or as per taste ( we generally prefer it to be mild, and not too sweet or sugary)
5. Cardamom Powder: 1/2 tsp
6. Almonds, cashews and raisins: a handful

Method:
  1. Wash and peel the carrots and then grate them.
  2. Take a heavy bottomed pan/kadai and pour 1/4 cup ghee in it.
  3. Heat it and add the grated carrots to it.
  4. Give it a stir and cook for 3-5 minutes on low flame. Make sure it doesn't burn/go brown.
  5. Now add half a litre milk to it  and let it cook for 15 minutes on medium flame. Keep stirring occasionally.
  6. The milk will almost reduce to half by now. Now add the remaining half a litre milk or you can add all at one time if the pan is very deep, else the milk will spill out on boiling/cooking.
  7. Simmer and let it cook. I generally leave it on the stove top and keep preparing other things in the meanwhile. But don't forget to give it a stir in some time else it might stick to the bottom.
  8. You'll see the milk evaporating and the carrots going really soft and mushy, and this is what we want.
  9. Add the chopped/ sliced/ slivered nuts and raisins, but save some for garnishing. 
  10. Towards the end, when the milk is almost no more, keep stirring continuously/often to make sure it doesn't burn.
  11. When the ghee starts separating, add the sugar.
  12. After adding sugar, you'll see that it's turning wet again and the dryness has gone. Don't worry, that's just the sugar melting.
  13. Cook it for 2-3 minutes with continuous stirring and add the 1/4 cup of the remaining ghee now.
  14. Do not overdo/overheat, else the halwa will become sticky because of the sugar hardening. I generally leave it a little moist/wet and after cooling it takes the right form on its own.
  15. When the ghee starts leaving the corners, put the flame off. The halwa will look soft and creamy.
  16. Now garnish with dry fruits and don't rush to clean the kitchen ( that can be done later). Enjoy every spoon of it.
Microwave Method:

Ingredients:

1. Carrots: 6
2.  Milk: 250 ml
3. Milk Powder/ Khoya: 1 cup
4. Sugar: 8 tbs or as per taste 
5. Nuts and cardamom
6. Ghee: 1/2 cup 

Method:
  1. Take the grated carrots and ghee ( we need 1/4 cup here) in a large microwavable bowl. ( By large, I really mean large, to avoid any milk from splushing).
  2. Now microwave on full power for 3 minutes with a stir every minute to check the carrots from burning.
  3. Now add milk and microwave for 15 minutes. Give a stir at every minute and see it doesn't spill on heating/boiling. ( That's why I said a large bowl.) The milk should almost reduce to half by now.
  4. Now add the milk powder/khoya and cook for 5 minutes.
  5. Add the remaining ghee and cook for a minute. The halwa should be creamy and slightly moist by now. If it is still runny, cook for some time more.
  6. Prefer glass bowls for microwaving to sustain proper flavors.
  7. Add sugar and nuts at the end and microwave for 3 minutes. Do not overcook else the halwa will go sticky.
  8. Serve out of the oven, hot and steaming.

Suggestions:
  1. If you find the procedure too lengthy, you could switch to the khoya/mava version where you need to add khoya instead of boiling for so long, but the taste will differ for sure.
  2. Also a quick microwave way could be adopted by pushing in milk powder with some milk and carrots and microwaving. Refer to the complete method above. Also, you could make Instant Microwave Carrot Burfi.
  3. Though it takes almost an hour to finally prepare this, but you could finish off the rest of your course and cooking amidst. ( Like I made Ragda Patties in the meanwhile.)
  4. If you want it even much creamier and milky, add in more milk.
  5. Always add sugar towards the end ( and this rule goes for most of the sweets) else the halwa will be all sticky and chewy. Never cook for too long after adding sugar, too. You just need to make sure that the sugar has dissolved and merged well with the rest of the stuff. If you find the halwa slightly creamy and wet here, don't worry; it will set as soon as the sugar sets on cooling.
  6. Be sure you don't under/overdo it because the real art lies in getting the perfect texture. 
  7. I recommend, if the halwa is too sweet, you'll not be able to taste carrots, so keep it mildly sweet (though it depends on your taste buds and cravings for sweet).
  8. My hubby says, aromatic, hot halwa goes well with a freezing scoop of vanilla ice-cream. Try it for a change. :)


The recipe goes to:
A Celebration of Indian Food  at Lisa's Kitchen
Carrot Recipes  by My Culinary Creations
Cakes, Cookies and Desserts by me
Valentine's Day  at Anzz cafe
Valentine's Day Event  by Teenz' Yummy Delights
Cook. Eat. Delicious. Desserts by Veggie Platter






25 comments:

  1. yummy...its simply mouthwatering...gonna try it now

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  2. Loved your write up.i too prepare the Sam way. It tastes amazing when cooked with milk. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and recipe.

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  3. I completely agree with you, a Mother's food has always that special touch.
    Love that lip smacking, scrumptious halwa. Thanks for linking to my event.

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  4. wow...this is really awesome! Loved your write up too! Thx a lot for sending to my ''Valentine's Day Event'' :)

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  5. omy Goodness....cant take my eyes from your lipsmacking cliks...
    excellent presentation..hats off dear..:)
    Tasty Appetite

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  6. lovely carrot halwa and very tempting clicks..thanks for linking with my event

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  7. Carrot halwa is my all time favorite, nice presentation! I too like that combination - hot halwa with cold ice-cream.. simply can't resist...!

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  8. The carrot halwa looks delicious, superb and extremely divine. thank you for linking this to my event..!

    My event- Valentines Day Special

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  9. Reading of Recipe was a mouth watering and a yummmyyyy experience. m gonna try it today itself. Madam could you also favor by mentioning the time and temperature of recipes (if possible)to be cooked in microwave.As it will add much ease to the new use of MW.

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    Replies
    1. @ Bhabhi: Ya, I should have done that earlier. But yeah, before I mention all that, I need to clearly state that the taste will differ for sure. Thanks for this lovely feedback; you'll find it embedded in the recipe soon. :)

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  10. mouthwatering n delicious halwa..

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  11. Reading 'doodhiya' & seeing the pics I felt you mixed Lauki-Carrot to make halwa, because your halwa has these lovely shades of orange!
    I didn't know cooked carrot was healthier than raw - I thought cooking vegetables removes some of its nutrients. Something new learnt today.
    Definitely nothing beats maa ke haath ka pyaar se bana hua khaana :)

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  12. What a rich and delicious dessert - A hot fav with my son - so I am sending him over to your place Anjali ;))

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  13. Nice writeup.Really loved it.Your recipe tempts me a lot to try this

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  14. Wonderful recipe dear! My mom is a perfect cook for Halwa. Somehow I never got her taste when I prepare..Should try this! Thanks for sending to my event! loved your space dear




    CC - Flavors of Tamilnadu

    Lock Lock Series 2

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  15. Hey! I know you've already seen it. :D This is just a customary thank you I'm sending out to everbody. :D

    - Thanks so much for participating in Jingle All The Way. :) I’ve posted the Roundup here. Do have a look.
    Also, I’m hosting Kid's Delight - Something Sweet for Jan 16th-Feb15th 2012. I would love to have your posts linked there. :-)
    -
    Kavi (Edible Entertainment)

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  16. I am drooling here and feel like having it now.(time is 8.30 pm now) .Your pictures tempt me so much.

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  17. This is awesome... I love gajar ka halwa!!!

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  18. Thank you very much for submitting your recipe to my event. I want to eat this right now. Lovely photos and one fine sweet.

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  19. wow..one of my faorite all time deserts...:)drooling here...:)

    Thanx for sending to my event dear...:)

    Dr.Sameena@

    http://myeasytocookrecipes.blogspot.com/

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  20. Looks so yummmmmy Anjali!! I wish I could dig it right out of the screen!

    Do contribute some of your fab recipes to my ongoing event Gimme GREEN!

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  21. Anjali I just tried this out and it turned out awesome!I've posted it on my blog with a link to yours.Thanks for sharing.

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    Replies
    1. It's a pleasure knowing this, sweetie. :)
      Thanks for trying and then responding so promptly.

      Delete

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