Comes winter and everywhere in my family starts talking about halwas. I and my family like hot halwas in winters, there are so many halwas made from vegetables, lentils, wheat, rice, and different flours. But I like just some of them and I’ve learnt to make a few of my favorites, hoping to share with you ‘all. There are many many varieties and made in different ways. Some people use oil but I prefer to use Ghee (purified butter) like my luma (grandma says) somehow it just tastes good with it. Here I will share my ways with a twist…so here goes Halwa Mania.
Anday Ka Halwa (Egg Pudding/Halwa)
6 whole Eggs
¾ cup Ghee (clarified butter)
¼ cup vegetable oil
10 ounces Sugar
1 cup milk
11/2 tsp crushed green cardamom
Pinch of yellow food color (optional)
1 tsp vanilla extract
50g blanched, skinned and halved Almonds
50g Crushed Pistachio
1. In a bowl add eggs, milk, cream, vanilla extract, lightly beat and keep aside.
2. In a bowl mix both the ghee and oil keep aside.
3. In a pot add khoya and cook on low heat till the khoya melts, still on low heat add sugar and stir slowly till sugar melts around 5 minutes.
4. Add ghee/oil mixture, stir to combine and add ½ tsp crushed cardamom stir gently
5. And gradually little by little add the egg and milk mixture keep stirring all the time, now when all the mixture has been added keep cooking on low flame until all the mixture has been combined and thickened
6. Then put the heat on medium and continue cooking and stirring until oil starts to surface, add the nuts and cook a bit more. Done!!.
Serve warm with crushed nuts sprinkled on top.
* If you dont want to make khoya then you can use Ricotta cheese, instead of khoya/mawa. Put it in a heavy non stick pan and heat it on low-medium heat, stirring it often until most of the water has evaporated and then use it as khoya.
You can get ready made khoya and ghee from Pakistani and Indian stores. In case you don’t try making the homemade recipes.
Homemade khoya recipe:
Khoya or Mawa, it is solidified milk that is used for making numerous sweets.
2 liter full cream milk
A heavy bottomed pan.
Making Plain Khoya:
1. Bring milk to boil in a heavy bottomed pan. Reduce flame to medium and simmer. Continue simmering, stirring very frequently, especially towards the end, when milk has become thick. You must not let it ‘catch/stick’ at the bottom, or it will burn.
3. When the milk is almost solid, quite thick, turn the heat off and allow to cool. It will solidify a little more as it cools.
4. If not using immediately, cut in 2-3 portions and freeze, wrapped in a cling film or in a plastic bags.
Ghee Making from Butter:
It is basically butter where milk solids and water have been removed by cooking it.
250-500 gm. butter, unsalted.
1. Place butter in a heavy bottomed pan and melt on medium heat. Do not put lid on.
2. Simmer. You can remove froth from the top during simmering, but this is not strictly necessary. You have to continue stirring from time to time, to stop it from boiling over and the sediments 'catching' at the bottom.
3. Continue simmering until all bubbling stops and the sediments at the bottom of the pan look light beige/brown in color (Do not overcook butter. If you do, the solids at the bottom turn brown, as does the ghee. It can still be used in cooking but has rather a different, smoky sort of flavor!). Clear, golden colored ghee is visible now. Remove any leftover scum.
4. Rest it for 10-20 minutes, very hot ghee can cause severe burns if spilled.
5. Strain through a fine sieve or muslin/cheesecloth while still warm and liquid.
6. Store in a clean jars.