Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Low fat Gajar ka Hawla with Paneer

Gajar ka halwa is one such scrumptious dish everyone loves. You visit any wedding in India during winters, this Carrot halwa and Gulab Jamun are  a must for desserts. I have even heard people in the weddings  saying –“ Tch tch.. no Carrot halwa here,  what sort of wedding they did for their daughter”. Though it’s a matter of shame, that we  analyse the level of weddings on the basis of a certain dish, but it certainly reflects the importance of these two desserts  in the Indian ceremonies.

Gazar halwa is a very rich dessert. And if you have always believed its very healthy since its made up of Carrots, I hate to burst your  bubble... Its really not that healthy.. better than having gulab Jamun obviously ! But in terms of a health scale/meter, it will hardly go above 3. Reason being we destroy all the  important vitamins and minerals when we cook carrots for such a long time. Plus all the Khoya/Mawa/condensed milk that goes inside, tsc tsc.. definitely  not making it any better ..

I am also one of those “normal” people who adore Gajar halwa and think of having it every fortnight at least. But since my weighing scales have started giving me stern looks, I have to keep this urge of mine under control. Just like that, I had this experiment some time before of adding some left over Paneer to his halwa. It turned out  to be very rich and delicious, just how it should ideally be. Only with lesser fat content  Plus Paneer gave that smoothness to this dessert which was amazingly fresh. This one has a grainy texture, somewhat resembling khoya/mawa, and is as delicious as any other version of it could be. Try this version of Gajar halwa and I hope you like it as much as I do J


What you need? 
  • 1 kg carrots, shredded / grated
  • 1 cup fresh paneer, grated/ crumbled
  • 1 cup sugar + 2 tbsp
  • ½ cup chopped nuts for garnish – cashews, almonds, pistachios etc.
  • 2 tbsp skimmed Milk powder – optional
  • ¼ cup ghee – you may reduce it to 2 tbsp
  • ½ tsp cardamom powder
  • ½ cup whole milk  

How to make?
  • Throw everything ( except Paneer and nuts ) in a Pressure cooker and cook till one whistle. Open when pressure eases off and stir  well with a heavy ladle to mix everything together.
  • The mixture will be watery at this stage, turn the flame on and cook it uncovered for about 10-12 minutes on medium flame stirring it continuously so it doesn’t stick to the bottom
  • Meanwhile, mix 2 tbsp sugar with Paneer and mix it really well.. almost knead it a  couple of times.
  • Mix this Paneer with the Gajar halwa and continue cooking for another 12-15 minutes on low flame , till the water is all evaporated and everything is mixed properly.
  • Turn off the flame, add chopped nuts and give a gentle stir. Serve hot !

Notes:
  • if you wish to replace plain milk with condensed milk, adjust the quantity of sugar accordingly. 
  • Adding enough Ghee is the trick to get the rich texture, if you reduce the quantity make sure you add more milk and cook it a bit extra to get milk absorbed properly
  • I sometimes add shredded beetroot  or bottle guard to this halwa, tastes heavenly ! :)
  • You may want to use low-fat Paneer, I have never used it so cant say if that will be the best choice . Gajar halwa is supposed to be rich, not the healthiest ! ;) 


Similar Halwa/ Pudding recipes you might like:-




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