Carrot Halwa

This recipe takes some time to make; prep work is tedious. No, really. Tedious. Grating 3 lb of carrots took me about an hour by myself. Whenever possible, get the thickest carrots you can find, because it’s ridiculously difficult to grate the skinny little ones or the ones that taper down to a point so fine you could write with them. I grated them in batches and kept them in a Ziploc bag in the fridge till I was ready to cook them. Also, your hands and fingernails may be orange-yellow for a day or two; you may want to wear gloves to prevent this.  

3-4 Tbsp ghee (clarified butter – can be found in your local Indian grocery store or you can make it) or light cooking oil, such as vegetable or coconut oil  
3 lb carrots – washed, peeled, and grated
2 cups whole milk or heavy cream
4 cups sugar
2 Tbsp raisins
3/4 to 1 tsp cardamom seeds, crushed (or use 1/2-ish tsp cardamom powder)
(optional) 3 tsp ground almonds, pistachios, cashews, or any combination
(also optional) slivered, sliced or chopped nuts for garnish
Soak raisins in water to soften them. Set aside.
Heat ghee in a heavy pan. Add carrots and cook until the carrots have cooked down by about half. Add milk and cook until about 3/4 of the milk has cooked down. Add sugar and cook until the rest of the liquid is absorbed. Drain the raisins. Stir in raisins, cardamom, and ground nuts (if using).
Remove from heat and put into serving dish(es). Garnish with slivered nuts (or don’t). Serve hot, room temperature, or refrigerate until cold, depending on your taste.

Store leftovers in the fridge. I don’t know how long it will keep, because it’s usually gone in a day or two around here.


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