Moong Dal Halwa is one of those dishes which is made only on super special occasions like festivals 🙂
Moong Dal halwa is a labour of love. Indulgent and delicious, it is made only on special occasions. Diwali, Holi or a dessert if you want to impress someone with a kickass Indian dessert. It is a recipe one must have in their treasure trove of recipes.
This Kesari Moong Dal Halwa is my grandma’s recipe, make it for this Holi lunch and bask in the glory of compliments that come your way!
Moong Dal Halwa is really popular in Rajasthan! The indulgence of ghee and dry fruits – yumm! It is usually made during the winter months to keep the body warm. I think because it is so cold up North during the winter months, this is a very popular dessert option for special occasions! Halwas have their origins in the Middle East and they have travelled a long way to India to become extremely popular! Each part of India has its special halwa! Like the Bombay Halwa in the west, or the Kerala halwa you get down South or the Kesari or Sooji ka Halwa which is made differently in every part of India!
The Kerala Halwa is made from refined flour and cornflour and is this gelatinous version of sweet! And then there is the popular badam halwa from the North which has a profound Mughal influence in it! Rich in taste and pretty expensive to make, this one is considered to be the king of halwas 🙂 Then, of course, we have halwas which are made from vegetables like doodhi ka halwa and gajar ka halwa which are unique in their taste and healthy too 🙂 Sigh, I could do an entire research work on Halwas, eh? Anyways, now moving to the recipe….of the awesome moong dal halwa!
Also stay tuned for another lovely Holi Recipe tomorrow, it has lots of almonds and some spices as well. Any guesses what it is? 🙂
Moong Dal Halwa (Indian Lentil Pudding)
- 2 cups moong dal Yellow
- 1.25 cups ghee
- 1.5 cups sugar
- 1 tbsp Kesar Saffron / Strands
- 1/2 cup milk
- 3 cups water
- 1 cup khoya Unsweetend
- 1/3 cup raisin
- 1/3 cup almond flakes
- 2 tbsps Pista Sliced
- 8 - 10 cashew
- Wash throughly and soak the yellow moong in ample amount of water for 6 hours or overnight. After the soaking time has passed, drain the water completely and grind to a coarse paste. The consistency of this is important here. We do not want it to be too grainy and at the same time it should not be very pasty and fine. Keep aside the ground batter.
- In a heavy bottom pan, heat the ghee till medium hot. To this add the ground moong dal and stir continously. This is probably the most important step in the making of the moong dal halwa, so do not get discouraged by the stirring involved. It will pay off in the end. While stirring the first milestone is one the ghee starts floating above the moong dal and technically one could stop at this point but I like my moong dal well roasted and browned both for the color and for the nutty taste. So continue stirring till the moong dal is browned.
- While the moong dal is roasting, boil water and sugar together to make a one string syrup. Syrup cooking is often used during candy making and while the west uses the candy theremometer to determine when to stop, in India we use the number of strings. To test how many strings the syrup is, boil together sugar & water and dip a wooden spatula in it. Bring it out and let it cool for 5 secs and then take a little of sryup between your fingers. Stretch your thumb and finger apart and the number of strings that the solution forms is the string consistency of the syrup.
- Soak saffron strands (kesar) in warm milk and keep aside.
- Once the moong dal is roasted, add the sugar syrup and the milk kesar mixture to it and cook till it is dropping consistency.
- Add the khoya to the above and stir well, cook it it is almost melted. Now add all the nuts and raisins to the moong dal halwa. Mix and serve warm.