Halwasan is a traditional Indian sweet from Gujarat region of India. It has fudge-like texture and consistency and is made from milk, edible gum, semolina, and caramelized sugar.
It is a relatively healthy sweet as we are using edible gum which is sourced naturally from tree gum and is considered to be very nutritious. It is great for boosting your immunity, stamina, and health, hence it is widely used in many winter food and sweets especially around this time of the year in India.
- 1 liter Milk (I usually use whole milk)
- ½ Lemon juice
- 25 grams (1oz) fine Semolina flour (fine Rava)
- 25 grams (1oz) Edible Gum
- 1 tablespoon Ghee
- ¾ cup Sugar
- ¼ teaspoon Nutmeg powder (grated Jaifal)
- Slivered Pistachio or Almonds for decoration.
- Take a thick bottom pot, grease it with ghee and add milk to it. Heat milk on medium to high heat, stirring it occasionally so it does not stick to the bottom. Heat the milk till it comes to rolling boil, this should take about 20 minutes or so.
- In the meantime, heat ghee in a wide skillet till warm, add edible gum to it and roast it on low heat, stirring it constantly till all the gum is light brown and fluffed up. Keep it aside to cool it for about 5-10 minutes.
- Once the cooked gum cools down grind it to a fine powder and keep aside.
- In the same pan add Rava and roast it on medium heat till it turns light pink. Make sure to stir it constantly to avoid it from burning.
- The milk should come to a rolling boil by now, turn the heat to medium-low and add lemon juice to the milk and stir constantly for about 2 minutes. You will notice that the milk will start to curdle.
- Turn the heat to low, add the ground Gum powder to this curdled milk. Stir constantly even while adding the gum powder so that it mixes well. It might splatter a bit, so stir it slowly for about a minute on medium heat. This will further curdle the milk.
- Turn the heat back to low, add roasted Rava to this curdled milk and stir it constantly. Again remember to stir it slowly as it might splatter, let it simmer on low while you are making caramelized sugar.
- Heat a pan on medium-low, add 3/4 cup sugar to it. Melt the sugar and caramelize it till light brown, stirring it only if needed, as stirring will create lumps.
- Once the sugar is ready, turn down the heat on curdled milk to lowest and wear your oven mittens as this part is going to really splatter. Add the caramelized sugar to the pot very slowly, make sure its away from you, mix it.
- Simmer the curdled milk on medium-high till all the separated water evaporates and the mixture comes together. Use splatter screen if you have to avoid the water splattering out while its just simmering. You might not need to stir much at the beginning since water content will be high in the pot, but towards the end make sure you are constantly stirring to avoid Halwasan from sticking to the bottom and burning.
- Cook till its all dry almost like the dough consistency. This will take about 3 or more hours. Remove from flame, add Jaifal powder to it, mix and set aside to cool.
- Once it is cool enough to handle, make small flat pedas out of it. Garnish with Pistachio or almond slivers and serve.
- Garnish halwasan with Slivered Pistachio or Almonds.
- You can also garnish halwasan with Saffron strands or Rose petals as well.
- Greasing the pot with ghee before boiling the milk will prevent it from sticking to the pan. Make sure you coat the bottom and the sides of the pot properly. Melted ghee makes coating the pan easier.
- Edible Gum- Gum will be hard before roasting, once you roast them in the pan they will puff up and become crunchy. Make sure to roast it properly, sometimes you might need to press small pieces a bit to puff them up. You will know its done when they have all expanded and fluffed up. Turn down the heat to low once half of them have fluffed up, stirring them constantly is important to evenly heat them.
- While Making Pedas keep a small bowl of water handy to wet your hands. Wet hands, take some halwasan mava and roll it into a fairly smooth ball, then press it in between your palms making it into a flat peda. Use the blunt end of the knife to scrape off the remains from your hand as needed.
- You can skip adding nutmeg altogether, it is completely optional.
- The pictures used for this recipe were taken for a 4-liter milk batch so the quantity seen in the pictures is more than the regular 1-liter batch.
- In case you do not have mittens you can just cover your hand with kitchen napkin or use a longer spatula.