Sunday, March 24, 2013

I'm going to miss my Gaajar ka Halwa !

All through Dec-March, I have been enjoying the taste of fresh, bright red winter carrots:

Go on, admit it. They look fantastic, don't they?
During the rest of the year we get these orange ones; they are small and stubby and not very interesting.

"Regular" carrots for sale at Chittaranjan Park
These orange ones always remind me of Brer Rabbit, for some reason :)
Then along comes winter, and the long red ones start appearing in the markets. They're so juicy and sweet that I often end up buying more than I need!

This year I've eaten an unusually high number of winter carrots. I've julienned and grated them into several salads. I've diced them small into biryanis and pulaos. I've sauted them with other winter vegetables as a stuffing for rolls. But what I've enjoyed the most - my favourite winter carrot treat - has been Gaajar ka Halwa.

I suspect this is North India's favourite winter dessert, because I know very few people who don't like it. What's not to like about a mixture of carrots, milk and sugar? :) :)
Hot Gaajar Halwa from my kitchen, just before the garnishing
Now that spring is here, I am going to have to say goodbye to this :(
The markets are still carrying several winter vegetables; although in a few weeks it will be all gone.

I am not a big fan of radishes, but lots of people love them and winter is when the best ones make their appearance. Chef Sanjeev Kapoor has a whole bunch of radish (mooli) recipes here. My favourite among them is mooli paratha.
Fresh winter radishes in Delhi's bazaars
Another winter specialty is broadbeans or sem phalli.
 This year the crop in Rajasthan has fared really badly due to frost.
But the best part of winter is all the green leafy vegetables that appear in the market. Spinach, amaranth, mustard greens, fenugreek, there's lots to choose from! In general we don't eat leafy vegetables in the monsoons, so when winter comes, it's great to be able to add these to the diet.
What a pleasing sight!
The last couple of weekends, we have been indulging ourselves with paalak ke pakode (spinach fritters). It's really super-tasty, and Sanjeev Kapoor's video is very good. So here's the video recipe; watch it, it will make you salivate!

If you cannot follow Hindi, then the English language recipe is here. Spinach will be in the markets all through spring, so you can try this recipe next weekend. The entire family will clamour for more. Let me know how it goes!!


Taxi for Agra said...

Humm after seen Gaajar ka Halwa. My mouth filled with water, such a mouth watering dish.

Prarthana said...

Healthy season is back Deepa Ji First time visitor here ...I am still browsing hope you have shared recipes of Indian delicacies too