I woke up this morning and dense fog welcomed me. We rarely get fog here, so it was a fresh sight which reminded me of chilly Delhi winters. The song where Amrita Arora quivers her body weirdly on the song – “Delhi ki sardi” is absolutely justified considering how cold Delhi mornings become in winters. Specially towards January, temperatures are really low and it gives you a shivery feeling which kinds of melt the body. But I used to love that feeling!
Early morning tea sessions were always hit in hostel, topped with girly gossip and Delhi Times pages. After which we used to disperse for our work and offices. And during the weekends, some enthusiastic girl would prepare warm halwas or kheer for and we all would pool in to enjoy it together. Golden days!
Just to relive the time, I prepared this Almond halwa this weekend. The warm and hearty halwa, tasted amazing with a cup of tea while I snuggled under the duvet watching some chick flick.
This is my mom’s recipe, where she doesn’t peel off the almonds before grinding. The peel of the almond contains a lot of nutrients and hence I would not advise you to remove it either. Although that would not give halwa that sheen and smoothness, but will definitely enhance the nutritional content and also I love the grainy texture when ground with peel on.
I have also mixed up some semolina to it, so as to add smoothness and shine to the otherwise dull look. It also gives an extra fiber to the halwa, which keeps you full for longer. Beware of the taste though, its extremely addictive and I warn you might get your stomach upset if won’t stop at one bowl.
What you need?
- 1/2 cup Almonds
- 1/4 cup Semolina
- 1/2 cup Sugar
- 3/4 cup Water
- 1/4 cup Ghee
- 4 tbsp Milk + 2tbsp extra
- 1/4 tsp Cardamom powder
- A pinch of Saffron
How to make?
- Soak almonds for 2-3 hours. Grind them along with 4 tbsp of milk to a fine or semi coarse paste as per your preference. I wanted mine grainy so ground to a semi fine texture.
- Add saffron to remaining 2 tbsp milk and keep aside.
- Heat 2 tbsp of ghee in a pan, add semolina and roast it on low flame till it gets light brown in colour and aroma starts coming out of the pan. Keep aside
- In the same pan – add sugar with water and let it boil until sugar dissolves completely.
- Then add the almond paste to water and stir it continuously to avoid lumps. Once its completely blended with the sugar syrup add saffron milk to the pan and mix well.
- Keep stirring on low flame for 5-7 more mins, it will splutter so be careful. Add cardamon powder and roasted semolina at this point, keep stirring
- Now start adding a tsp of ghee at regular intervals while stirring continuously. At one stage spluttering will stop, ghee will be completely absorbed and halwa will start leaving the sides of the pan and small white bubbles will start appearing. This is the right stage to switch off the flame
- Serve fresh or keep in fridge and cut in squares when cool down
My Notes and tips:
- As I said I havent peeled off the skin from Almonds, but usually people make it without the skin. So you may soak almonds for few hours for easy peeling or if you want to peel then off instantly then add it to boiling water for 10 mins then cool down and take the skin off.
- I havent used any food colour, but you may a pinch of yellow colour if you are preparing it for guests, to give it a good colour
- Adding Ghee at regular intervals is important, to help remove stickiness from the pan. It also gives the glossy texture to the halwa.
- When refrigerated it keeps well for atleast a week but I bet it wont last till a week 🙂