‘Halwa’ is a decadent Indian sweet, usually made by boiling grain or vegetable like carrot in milk with constant stirring. I generally avoid recipes that call for stirring for a long time on low heat. But there are times when you would like to produce a quick dessert for guests with what is available in the pantry. I have found that a combination of tinned mango pulp, soaked cashews and coconut can make a quick and delicious, not-so-decadent halwa! The cashews and coconut give it substance and volume, not to mention excellent flavor.
It became such a hit when I made it the first time, that the kids are asking for ‘that mango sweet’ very often! Bringing this sweet treat to Fiesta Friday #20 hosted by Angie of The Novice Gardener. I’m eagerly waiting for everyone to take a virtual bite of this!
I also tend to use a non-stick teflon coated pan very rarely, only to make Indian sweets like this, but it does make life a lot easier. Half of the ghee (clarified butter) that is used can be recovered at the end of the cooking process.
Starting to heat the mixture:
At the end of 30 minutes, it leaves the sides of the pan: recover the ghee!
mango, cashew and coconut halwa
mango pulp- 3/4 cup
fresh/frozen shredded coconut- 1/2 cup heaped
raw cashews- 1/2 cup
water- 1/4 cup
sugar- 1/6 cup
clarified butter/ghee- 2 tbsp.
cardamom powder- 1/2 tsp.
saffron strands- a few
pistachio pieces- a few for garnish
* Soak cashews in hot water for 30 minutes-1 hour. Drain and rinse once.
* Grind cashews with minimum amount of water (about 1/4 cup); add coconut and mango pulp, blend till smooth.
* Transfer to a non-stick pan, add sugar, 1 tbsp. ghee and stir often on medium heat. Also add cardamom powder and saffron strands.
* When the volume is reduced to half, add another tbsp. of ghee, stir till the mixture leaves the sides of the pan. At this time, the ghee can be taken out with a spoon. Use it to grease a square dish.
* Transfer the mixture to the greased dish. Allow to cool completely (can be placed in the fridge) before cutting it into squares. Garnish with pistachio pieces.
* Store in the fridge for up to a week.
If fresh mangoes are used, extra sugar will have to be added, depending on the sweetness of mangoes.