Sunday, March 25, 2012

Carrot Ricotta Halwa/Dessert Pudding

Most of the Indian sweets/desserts are rich. And there are some which can be made either the rich way or not so rich way. Carrot Halwa is one such dessert. Many people use so much ghee/clarified butter in it that I have seen the fat floating on the top. That makes me not to eat it at all. On the top of using so much fat, they add khoya to it (which is nothing but very thick, almost crumbly mass made by heating high fat milk for hours together). This one has very less fat compared to many recipes, but I have used ricotta cheese to bring the same richness to the dessert.
One year back - Apricot Orange Bread, Mango Chiffon Cake, Portuguese Sweet Bread
Two years back - Iyengar Bakery Toast/Indian Bruschetta
Peeled Grated Carrots - 4 cups (Use medium grater, not the fine grater)
Milk - 2 cups (I used 2 %)
Ricotta cheese - 1 cup (I used part-skim) (Or use crumbled paneer)
Ghee or butter - 4 TBSP divided use
Cashews - 3 TBSP or more
Raisins - 3 TBSP or more
Sugar - 2 cups (Or 1/2 cup more for a sweeter halwa)
Cardamom - 5 pods powdered

Take a heavy bottomed saute pan. Heat 2 TBSP of ghee or butter. When it melts, add the grated carrots. Keep stirring frequently for about 2 - 3 minutes. Add milk and stir. Let it boil on moderately high heat stirring frequently. When the carrot is cooked and almost all the milk has evaporated, add sugar and mix. It will become liquidy again. Reduce the flame to medium and continue to stir frequently until it looks as if all the moisture has evaporated. Add ricotta cheese or paneer and stir to combine. Let it simmer on low heat. At the same time, heat the remaining 2 TBSP of ghee or butter. When it melts, fry cashews followed by raisins till cashews are golden and raisins are plump. Add this to the pudding pot. Mix well. Let the halwa thicken more and turn off the heat when you start seeing ghee or the fat at the sides of the pan. Add cardamom powder and stir. Serve warm or at room temperature.
If you use organic carrots or kind of carrot that is very sweet naturally, reduce the sugar by few TBSP. You could skip adding ricotta completely and make Carrot Halwa. In that case, you will need to use more ghee to give it the richness.

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  1. Hi Champa, how r u doing......ya, I know I'm here after a long time...u won't beleive I was about to make carrot halwa or gajrela(as we call) but instead ended up making a cake(not the carrot one) long story.....but I also don't like lot of ghee.....either ricotta or mawa(khoya) + milk.....yours look let's c when I plan to use my arm muscles(like to grate them by hand :) )

    1. Spice,
      I use hand grater too. It is not that bad even though I would've used food processor if the grater blade was still there. I broke it few years ago.


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