15
Mar
07

Badam Halwa

dsc03991tn.jpgAlmonds are one of my favorite nuts. When we were kids (me, my sister & my cousins) used to visit my grand parents home. And there is a temple near by. My grand parents use to do service in the temple. This temple is surrounded by huge plantation of Almonds, Cashews, Mango, Tamarind, Banana tress and lots of trees. After lunch we used to go along with them and help them clean the surroundings of the temple and at the same time collect the fallen fruits and nuts. While collecting we always hide few from our grand parents as they do not allow us to bring them home. But still we manage to get few to eat. After being caught breaking the almonds, my grand father used to lecture us. The lecture had an impact till that evening and the next day we are back at our business collecting the fallen nuts and fruits.:)

Almonds (Badam) are extensively used in Indian cooking even though they are little expensive. Few of my family’s favorites are Badam milk, Badam rolls (mixed with cashew and pistachios), dry fruit ladoo, Kheer and Halwa. Almonds are often used for garnish, also makes a beautiful presentation.

Almond paste is often used in savory dishes and to instead of cream. It gives a rich and delicate finish to the dish. Badam halwa is a delicious desert made with puréed almonds, butter/ ghee (clarified butter), sugar and saffron. The delicate flavor of saffron gives rich finish and beautiful pale yellow color to the halwa. This recipe comes from my Vasu Atta’s kitchen.

Ingredients

13 oz raw almonds (approx 3 cups)
2-2 ½ cups sugar
½ -3/4th cup ghee or butter (1 stick)
1 tsp saffron
Water to make paste

Procedure

Soak almonds overnight. Peel the skins and grind the almonds into a soft paste with little water (don’t make it watery, it will take long to cook). Take a big heavy bottom deep skillet; add butter/ ghee and almond paste. Cook on medium low heat for 10-15 minutes, now add sugar, saffron and keep stirring continuously till it starts to come together (approx 20-25 minutes). Turn of the heat and let the mixture completely cool down. Refrigerate in tight container. Serve warm or cold.

 

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Notes and Tips

You can use milk instead of water to grind. You can add more sugar and saffron to suit your taste. Don’t cook it long. It will turn dry. This stays fresh for 2-3 weeks in fridge. If you want to serve warm take required portion and warm in microwave.

This is my entry for Sushma’s Monthly Cooking Tipology event. I know a way head of it as Sushma said:).

Little history and facts about almonds:-

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The almond that we think of as a nut is technically the seed of the fruit of the almond tree, a medium-size tree that bears fragrant pink and white flowers. Like its cousins, the peach, cherry and apricot trees, the almond tree bears fruits with stone-like seeds (or pits) within. The seed of the almond fruit is what we refer to as the almond nut.The delicately flavored and versatile almond is available throughout the year to make a healthy and tasty addition to both sweet and savory dishes. While packaged almonds are available year round, they are the freshest in mid-summer, which is when they are at the peak of their season.

The tree is a native of southwest Asia. It is a small tree, growing to 4-9 m tall. The leaves are lanceolate, 6-12 cm long, and serrated at the edges. The flowers are white or pale pink, 3-5 cm diameter with five petals, produced before the leaves in early spring.

Almonds are a unique food in that they are among the best whole food sources and the best nut; these are packed with mono unsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) and most of that is oleic acid one of the two good fats responsible for lowering LDL cholesterol and rich source of vitamin E (containing 24 mg per 100 g) in the form of alpha-tocopherol. Almonds are low in saturated fat and, are cholesterol free. In addition, almonds are an excellent source of magnesium, copper, manganese, riboflavin (B2) and vitamin B, contains a healthy mix of essential micro-nutrients—vitamins and minerals. Almonds are also a good source of phosphorus and calcium, which are important minerals for bone health.

Almonds are the best source of protein providing 6 grams in one ounce, nearly as much as in one ounce of red meat. Also, research shows that the protein in almonds is high quality and highly digestible. An analysis of the protein provided in one ounce of almonds showed that almonds have a Protein Digestibility Combined Amino Acid Score (PDCAAS) of 0.44, which means that the protein in almonds is able to be efficiently digested, absorbed and utilized similar to black beans, lentils and peanut meal. Along with the quality protein in almonds, there are 3 grams of dietary fiber per ounce. Of this, about 80 percent of the fiber is insoluble and 20 percent is soluble fiber.

Almonds in Cooking:-

Though the almond is most often eaten on its own, raw or toasted, it is used in some dishes. It, along with other nuts, is often sprinkled over desserts (Ice-creams and cream based dishes). There is also almond butter, a spread similar to peanut butter, popular with peanut allergy sufferers and for its less salty taste.Almonds can be processed into a milk substitute simply called almond milk; the nut’s soft texture, mild flavor, and light coloring (when skinned) make an good substitute to dairy, and a soy-free choice, for lactose intolerant persons and also for vegans.

dsc03986.JPGSource and for more healthy facts visit:-
(http://www.almondsarein.com)
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Almond)
(http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=20)


24 Responses to “Badam Halwa”


  1. March 16, 2007 at 8:47 am

    OMG!! How beautiful!!! Love the photos. Thanks for the recipe,looks gorgeous. You should send this to Sushama’s Tipology!!

  2. March 16, 2007 at 9:56 am

    Hey Asha,
    Thanks for letting me know about this event , I just sent email to Sushma, as its already 16th.

  3. March 16, 2007 at 10:45 am

    Lovely looking Halwa, I make it often for my kids..and I ate it a LOT during my pregnancy!

    Nice site you have here, will be back!

    trupti

  4. March 16, 2007 at 11:36 pm

    Wow the halwa looks super delicious. I loved the way you captured the picture. Love it.

  5. March 17, 2007 at 12:08 am

    The halwa looks lovely and the way you presented it, looks like scooped up ice cream🙂 Makes me hungry but have to lower my ghee/butter consumption😦

  6. March 17, 2007 at 10:10 am

    Halwa looks groovy Padmaja. For ugadi I wanted to make a different sweet this year than the regular bobbatlu’s. Will try this and let u know how it turns out🙂
    Cheers
    Latha

  7. March 17, 2007 at 10:46 am

    halwa looks so good, we have it at our neighborhood restaurant but thier version is very runny, wl try this. usually i make badam milk or kheer, never made halwa at home.
    thanks for the recipe

  8. March 17, 2007 at 10:12 pm

    Hi Trupti
    Thanks for dropping by. Even I ate a lot (Almonds) during my pregnancy. I love almonds in all forms:).

    Hey Seema
    Welcome back. Thanks for the compliment.

    Dear Sandeepa, lets do one thing I will make and send it to u. That way you won;t know how much fat I used;). What do u say.:D

    Thanks Latha, do lemme know one to try out.

    Richa. I’m gald u stopped by, lemme know when u make it.

  9. July 6, 2007 at 12:48 am

    hi nice pic…………………!

  10. November 18, 2007 at 10:28 pm

    Wow!!!halwa looks soo good. Your way of presentation and photograph both are simply superb.

  11. November 19, 2007 at 10:09 am

    Thanks Sri, I’m glad you liked it. I tried to leave a comment on ur blog but I’m not able to. You have a sweet blog.

  12. 19 Charles Garrett
    November 12, 2008 at 6:24 pm

    In the Golden Candlestick of the Tabernacle of Moses known as the Memorah each of the seven branches had in its beaten gold the likeness of the bud, the flower and the fruit of the Almond.
    I was wanting to see what these buds, flowers and fruit actually looked like. Are there any more pictures?
    Also can these almond trees grow in Sussex County in the south of Virginia, USA. Are there any special requirements in planting these trees.

    Thank you.

  13. 21 Fatima Mahmood
    April 28, 2010 at 4:19 am

    Hey thanks a ton…ist a very nice and easy way oto cook badam ka halw..thanks agn..

  14. 22 shahhista shah
    August 28, 2011 at 6:07 am

    Hello
    Thankyou for the recipe very clear instructions for someone like me who has never made badam halwa..going to make it tonight for iftari…so wish me luck…then make it for EID also..gona surprise everyone..


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