Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Besan Halwa

Ever since we moved into this house baking is a bust because the oven is a mess (previous tenants must have used it as a mouse cage or something). Since I couldn't be bothered to get off my butt long enough to clean it, I decided to preserve it (sort of like a shrine) for a next tenants and stay away from anything that needs to be cooked in an oven.
My sweet tooth, however, is not easily silenced. And Mr.P doesn't seem to be faring much better. So, I got out the huge ghee container my mom left behind and got to work.
This is the result.

Besan (Chickpea flour) Halwa

1 cup besan, sifted and dry roasted in the microwave for 2 min
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup ghee
1/2 cup milk (I used 1% but I would think whole milk would be best)
1 tbsp cashew powder
3 green cardamom pods
pinch saffron
slivered almonds

Prepare ahead - Toast almond slivers in a dab of ghee. Set aside. Peel the cardamom pods, powder the seeds and set aside. Heat the milk, mix the saffron strands in it and set aside.

In a thick bottomed pan, melt the ghee. Add besan and mix well. Cook until the raw smell of besan is gone (about 7-8 min). Add the sugar, mix well.
When you no longer see the white of sugar, add the milk mixture, cashew powder and cardamom. Mix well and stir constantly for about 3-4 min. Pour the mixture out into a bowl and garnish with more saffron, and the toasted almonds. If you want to be fancy, thinly slice some pistachios and use it for garnish too.


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