Pumpkin Halwa/Kaddu Halwa/ Pumpkin Pudding

45 Minutes
Serves 6 People
Author: Rajni Ram
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Its Pumpkin time again! That said, India always has a perennial supply of Pumpkin, and hence the vegetable is not restricted to a particular season. How versatile the Pumpkin is I always wonder. Anything from snack, to dessert to curry, and even breads, can be cooked with this vegetable. This Pumpkin Halwa or pudding recipe is so easy, delicious and healthy. Gets done with minimum, every day ingredients. Cooking takes a little longer though, but will be worth it I assure.

There are two ways to cook the Pumpkin for this pudding. One is to grate the Pumpkin and cook it in milk, and the other is to cook/steam the pumpkin in the cooker and then cooking it in milk for a short time. I have followed the former. This is because, when the Pumpkin gets cooked in milk, it takes on such a delicious flavour, and texture. I prefer a slightly grainy texture,as compared to a super smooth one.

Depending on the quantity you are making it takes some time for the pumpkin to cook in the milk. The Pumpkin has to absorb all the milk. I have given the stages of reduction in the step wise recipe, do check that out. I hope you will enjoy cooking and eating this dessert.

While you are here I request you to check out other recipes on the blog like Rasakalan(Pumpkin cooked in tangy sauce), Moongal Halwa(lentil pudding), Beetroot Halwa (Beets pudding), and more…

Ingredients

  1. Pumpkin   grated 2 cups
  2. Sugar 1.5 to 2 cups as per choice
  3. Milk 2 cups
  4. Cardamom Powder 1/2 tsp
  5. Ghee/Clarified butter 3 tbsp
  6. Raisins  a few
  7. Cashew nuts broken a few
  8. Pistachios a few
  9. Edible/raw camphor (optional) a pinch
  1. Grate the Pumpkin and Keep it aside. In a Pan(preferably non stick), Take a tablespoon of ghee/clarified butter, and heat. Add the nuts and raisins and fry them until the raisins fluff up and the nuts turn a light brown. Remove the nuts and raisins on to a plate.
  2. Now to the remaining ghee/clarified butter in the pan,add the grated pumpkin and saute over a low flame for a minute. Add the milk, and stirring from time to time, cook the pumpkin in the milk. Flame should be medium,and keep stirring.
  3. Cook until almost all the milk evaporates. Now add the sugar. The mixture will turn moist again on adding sugar. Continue to stir, until all the moisture is absorbed. When almost all the moisture is absorbed, add cardamom powder, edible camphor(if using), and continue to stir. You know the pudding is done when it starts leaving the bottom of the pan(see picture).
  4. Now turn off the flame, add the toasted nuts and raisins,followed by another tablespoon or two of ghee/clarified butter. (the first picture of step 4 shows the consistency of the pudding).

Grate the Pumpkin and Keep it aside. In a Pan(preferably non stick), Take a tablespoon of ghee/clarified butter, and heat. Add the nuts and raisins and fry them until the raisins fluff up and the nuts turn a light brown. Remove the nuts and raisins on to a plate. Now to the remaining ghee/clarified butter in the pan,add the grated pumpkin and saute over a low flame for a minute. Add the milk, and stirring from time to time, cook the pumpkin in the milk. Flame should be medium,and keep stirring. Cook until almost all the milk evaporates. Now add the sugar. The mixture will turn moist again on adding sugar. Continue to stir, until all the moisture is absorbed. When almost all the moisture is absorbed, add cardamom powder, edible camphor(if using), and continue to stir. You know the pudding is done when it starts leaving the bottom of the pan(see picture).  Now turn off the flame, add the toasted nuts and raisins,followed by another tablespoon or two of ghee/clarified butter. (the first picture of step 4 shows the consistency of the pudding).

Notes:

  1. Discard/peel the skin of the Pumpkin. The same recipe can be followed with Butternut Squash.
  2. This recipe involves constant stirring, as we are working with milk. We don’t want it to boil over or burn. For the same reason the flame should be medium.
  3. Do not be tempted to cook it on high flame, as the milk may evaporate quickly, leaving the grated pumpkin half cooked. We want the pumpkin to be cook, yet retain its texture.
  4. If you have not used edible camphor before, then use it with caution. Here less is more. Just a pinch is a lot. Adding more can leave behind a bitter taste.
  5. Forgoing the edible camphor will not alter the taste of the pudding. Therefore it a optional ingredient.

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