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Tuesday 15 October 2013

Sluttishly Sweet: Carrot Halwa

Picture the scene: it's 1982, and my paternal grandmother has flown over to show her new Irish Catholic daughter-in-law how to make Indian food for her son. Onion bhajis? There's no chance my mum is deep frying anything. Chapattis? Sure - wait, cooked over a naked flame? No thanks. Carrot halwa? Against all odds, my mum can still whip up a batch of this over 30 years later. And this is despite her disliking (a) carrots, (b) condensed milk, (c) sweets and (d) cooking.

Hazel made pumpkin halwa last year but this version is even simpler. These quantities make a small batch because they are the sweetest things in the world. but double or even treble them if you're making them for a party. You could have a delicious Indian afternoon tea if you made these with our gluten-free pakora and oven-baked onion bhajis.

Carrot halwa
You will need:
  • 225g carrots, peeled and grated (approx. 2 medium carrots or 1 large)
  • 280g condensed milk
  • 1/2 tsp ground cardamom seeds
  • 12 flaked almonds*
Make it!
  1. Bring the carrots and condensed milk to the boil in a heavy bottomed saucepan. Leave it to simmer, stirring occasionally, until the mixture has thickened and the carrots have a slightly glossy look. You can cook over a high or low heat depending on how much time you have to stand and stir it.**
  2. Stir in the ground cardamom seeds and half the almonds. Transfer to a serving dish and garnish with the remaining almonds.
  3. Leave to cool, then cut into cubes and serve.

* my grandmother has since passed away, so I can't ask her about the oddly precise measurements. 12 flaked almonds? Would 13 ruin things?

** I love this advice. No time in the kitchen? Simply turn the temperatures up! It's fine!

Photo from Jing A Ling's Flickr photostream.

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