You might not think of a carrot dessert as being something special, but this is undeniably one of the best Indian desserts.
3/4 pound carrots, peeled and grated
1-1/2 quarts whole milk
1-1/2 sticks sweet, unsalted butter
3/4 cup sugar
Seeds from 8 cardamom pods
1/4 cup (total) slivered almonds and pistachio pieces
1. In a saucepot, combine carrots and milk. Bring to a boil, whisking frequently with a wire whisk to make sure that the milk does not stick to the bottom of the pan. Cook the mixture over medium heat for about 1 hour, or until it becomes thick. Continue stirring frequently to avoid a burnt flavor.
2. Add butter, sugar and cardamom seeds, and continue to cook until the mixture becomes thick enough to draw away from the sides and bottom of the pot in a semi-solid mass. This might take another 30 minutes to 1 hour. The cooking time will be more if you are scaling up the recipe.
3. Transfer halva to a serving platter and decorate the top with the almond and pistachio mixture.
Ajanta: Regional Feasts of India
by Lachu Moorjani
216 pages; Hardcover; $39.95
Recipe reprinted by permission.
This page created January 2006
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