I wish everyone a very Happy Diwali. One of the biggest festival has finally arrived with sky full of colorful lights. In 2015, Diwali is celebrated on 11th November.
Many names – Sheera, kesari, Rava sheera, Rava kesari, Sooji halwa. But nations and gods favorite festive sweet. Easy n tasty. Usually made of rava, sugar and garnishing. 1 proportion of rava, 2 water and 3 sugar. Cut down rava and sugar to half by adding this secret ingredient. You eat only half carbohydrates and sugars. A secret way to feed kids fruit. No one would believe because taste does not change at all. In-fact taste, aroma and texture is enhanced significantly by the secret ingredient. Sheera comes out much creamy, aromatic and soft. No food colors, no added flavours. Don’t forget to like and comment if you like it.
Though original recipe originated from Karnataka state, it is widely made in many parts of South India and Maharashtra. In Karnataka it is commonly known as Kesari bath. Kesari means saffron. Recipe is infused in saffron. A variation without saffron and ghee is made in north part of India called Sheera/Sooji halwa.
A variation of sheera is made of pineapple, some times banana. Both these fruits have strong flavor. Fruit flavor dominates sheera flavor and original taste. Spaghetti squash is neutral and mildly sweet in taste. So it blends well with other ingredients. Doesn’t dominate original flavor. Adds smooth creamy texture. When combined with rava, your kesari has same flavor and taste as original kesari.
- ½ cup - sooji/rava
- 1 cup - cooked and mashed spaghetti squash
- 1 tbsp - ghee
- ½ cup - brown sugar
- ⅛th tsp - fresh ground cardamom
- 1 tsp - cashews, raisins. Optionally add almonds.
- Cut spaghetti squash into half or quarters. Wrap in aluminum foil. Bake for 30 minutes on 350ºf.
- Let squash cool. Now use fork to remove strands. After removing strands, near edges and under skin strands are mushed. Separate mashed squash. Use mashed or strands for this recipe. I used mashed one.
- Boil 1¼ cups of water in a pot.
- Meanwhile roast sooji/ rava in a pan on medium heat for 10 minutes or till raw smell is gone. Turn off stove.
- When water is almost boiling, turn stove down to avoid spilling. Now slowly add rava to water while stirring. Make sure no lump forms. If stove is hot, hot rava will spill. For this reason, keep flame on medium low. Be safe while doing this. Add sugar.
- Stir and if there are any lumps, mash with spoon. Cook for 3 minutes. Now add mashed squash and ground cardamom and ghee. Turn off stove.
- Squash don't need to cook. It is already cooked. At this point squash retains creamy texture.
- Fry cashews, raisins and almonds in little ghee.
- Garnish on Kesari.
- Serve hot