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Saturday, June 20, 2009

Semolina Halva

The Altitude Adjustment Section
I thought it would be fun to do another Indian recipe from the cooking class. This is an unusual dessert (which I modified a bit the second time I made it) and it was delicious. I don’t know if the style of serving it is authentic, but the flavor certainly is. Semolina Halva is like a warm crumbly pudding.

Ingredients
2 1/2 cups water
5 Tbsp. ghee
1 oz. almonds, blanched and slivered
11 oz. semolina, fine-grained
5 1/2 oz. sugar
4 Tbsp. golden raisins
1/2 tsp. Ground cardamom seeds

Procedure
Boil the water in a saucepan. Once it comes to a rolling boil, turn the heat down to very low and let the pan sit on the back of the stove. Put the ghee in a large, preferably nonstick, frying pan and set it over medium heat. When hot, put in the almonds. Stir and fry them until they turn golden. Take them out with a slotted spoon and leave them to drain on paper towels.

Put the semolina into the same oil. Turn the heat to medium low. Stir and sauté the semolina for 8 to 10 minutes or until it turns a warm, golden color. Do not let it brown. Add the sugar and stir it in. Very slowly, begin to pour the boiling water into the pan. Keep stirring as you do so. Take a good 2 minutes to do this. When all the water has been added, turn the heat to low. Stir and cook the halva for 5 minutes. Add the golden raisins, almonds, and crushed cardamom seeds. Stir and cook for another 5 minutes. Scrape out into a small casserole dish or bowl. Serve hot, and how about a small pitcher of lemon quince syrup to pour on top? (Available at Ziggy's, which is where, I did all my shopping for this meal. They have a fantastic assortment of Indian and international ingredients.)