Cornflour Halwa ~ Halwa Recipes

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I wish all my Readers a very Happy Diwali! As you know it is very rare that Sweets spur from my kitchen. Usually I am not up to make Sweets as i don't have Sweet Tooth. But for some reason this year I have been craving for Sweets, call it stress or emotional eating, watever it is, that made me try some sweets this year. Lucky you, Sweet Lovers! :-) So for this Diwali, I am bringing the Cornflour Halwa to sweeten your teeth and wishing you all to have a Safe and Sound Holiday! This Halwa is very simple to make with less ingredients that are readily available in your pantry and made in microwave and ready in 20 minutes. What else you need ask for? This is perfect to make when you hear the knock on the door from those special guests tried to surprise you! I have adapted this recipe from Rak's Kitchen and adjusted some ingredients to suit my family needs. Here is my version of the recipe, Njoy!
Corn Flour Halwa
Ingredients:
Adapted from: Rak's Kitchen

Corn Flour  - 1/2 cup
Sugar - 1 1/2 cup
Water - 2 cups
Cardamom (Elachi) Powder - 1 tsp
Ghee - 3 Tbsp
Nuts -  10 - 15 (  Cashew and Pistachio)
Food Color - a pinch (Red or Orange or Yellow)


Method:

  1. Take a medium microwave safe bowl  (Glass Bowl is preferred) and mix the Corn Flour and Sugar well so that no lumps are there. Slowly start adding water and keep on mixing the flour so that you will get like batter consistency. Add food color to mixture mix it well until in incorporates well and making the whole batter colorful. ( I have used Orange Color in mine)
  2. Heat this mixture in Microwave for 6 minutes. in between at 3 min interval take it out and mix it well with spatula so that it won't stick to the bottom.
  3. Meanwhile crush 2 cardamom pods ( discard the skin) and make fine powder. Finely chop Cahew and Pistachio nuts into small pieces. Heat 1 Tbsp of Ghee and fry the chopped nuts until semi gold color and keep them aside ( you don't want to roast the nuts for this recipe, so be careful when you are frying the nuts).
  4. Now keep the Halwa again in microwave for another 6 minutes for second time. Now for every 2 minutes take it out and mix it or fold it from top to bottom ( this helps the heat to spread evenly, otherwise your edges will be too soft and center becomes stiff). You will start noticing the thick and firm halwa consistency is forming at this time. 
  5. Once you are done 6 minutes, take it out and add cardamom (elachi) powder and nuts and mix it well.  
  6. Take a wide plate and grease with 1 Tbsp of Ghee. Transfer the Halwa to plate spread evenly by pressing with Spatula ( use remaining Ghee here, that helps your spatula not to stick and allows to spread easily). Now let Halwa completely cool down for at least 30 to 60 minutes. 
  7. Once it cools down cut into squares or diamonds and enjoy right away.


Notes:
  • It stores good outside for 2 days. If you refrigerate the taste and texture changes. It's recommend to eat fresh. 
  • I have used orange color, you can use red or yellow as well
  • Easy way to remember the ingredients in this recipe is  ( 1 : 3 : 4), 1 part corn flour starch, 3 parts sugar and 4 parts water. You can easily scale the ingredients with this ratio if you have make bit batch.
  • When ever the nuts get under your teeth it tasted amazing, next time when i make I will be adding more nuts so that in every bite i will get more nuts. I am nut freak, esp I like nuts in sweets, if you are like me, then go for it and double your nuts measure in this recipe. 
  • And I am warning this is not a very healthy recipe as it uses Corn Starch and lot of Sugar. Don't rely on this to make it as a quick fix dessert for your kids, But once in a while it is okay to make it for festivals. 

Take a close peek, Look at that Glossy Texture!
Check out all other Halwa Recipes and More Sweets....!


Wish you all a very Happy Diwali! Have a safe and sound Holiday!
See you soon here, until then take care!
-Mythreyi

Happy Deepavali ~ Help Vizag to recover from HudHud Cyclone

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I wish you all Happy Diwali! Diwali is the festival that brings all the age groups in the family, city, state and country together with it's unique fun of Lighting up Diyas and Fire Crackers! However due to impact of Huge Cyclone in Vizag, A.P I am not that up lifted for this festival this year. I was shocked when i looked at some of the Before and After pictures of Vizag and the devastation that HudDud Cyclone caused in the city, which is proposed as one of Smart Cities in near future by Prime Minister of India.
10,000 Crores Loss - due to Cyclone Hudhud

I have never been to Vizag, nor the resident of this city, but still all the damage happened there is bugging me, just because I am also from the same state. I can only imagine, what pain the Vizagites have been gone through during this disaster event. Everybody is saying the HudDud Cyclone took the Vizag 30 years back.

Damaged Vizag's Airport during HudHud Cyclone. pic courtsey - Indian Express

Famous Gitam University

But at the same time it is so amazing, to see all the people are coming forward to fix their homes and lives and to move forward with positive spirits. I wish them all my wishes and pray God to give them enough strength, courage to keep up with the same spirit and to see the Vizag to Rebuild to it's original and even becoming more strong and stand-up as smart city as proposed. And I encourage all of us to support financially and stretch our hand to the people in Vizag to aid them to recover from this tragic event and help to 'Rebuild Vizag'. 

If you are willing to donate here is how you need to do it:

Following is the Facebook Page where lot of details are shared for volunteering options and lists the things needed: 

https://www.facebook.com/Hudhud2014


Will be back soon, take care until then!
-mythreyi


DIY - Rosemary Oil

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I am crazy for herbs, bcoz they are the small things that comes with great flavor and aroma. Herbs are very expensive to buy, hence it is very economical to grow them in your garden and also they will be quiet handy when you are in need. I have always grown Mint in my garden, since then I have a wish to have elaborated Herb Garden, they give nice aroma if you plant them near your sit out or patio etc. Slowly I have added Italian Basil, Thai Basil to my Herb Garden Collection. Basil is one variety it sustains and survives well, but you have to plant in every spring. I have tried Rosemary and Oregano this year, came to know that Oregano is very sensitive but on the other hand Rosemary is very rough and tough herb. Once you have planted it lasts forever surviving all seasons and stands still in all weather conditions.

Homemade Rosemary Oil

I know and have tried very few recipes that use Rosemary but those few are STAR recipes with the rosemary infused flavor. One is Rosemary Potatoes and Roasted Chicken or Turkey infused with Rosemary spices. Both recipes have subtle rosemary flavor and they taste delicious. So as I know only few recipes, I need to put good use for abundant rosemary that is growing in my garden.

These days I have been hearing a lot about the significance of Rosemary Oil in the health and beauty products, esp in hair treatment products. So  i have looked for some recipes and ideas to make Rosemary Oil, that search resulted in this Homemade Rosemary Oil. I have made one batch with it, it is so simple to make it, I have started using it for my hair and my daughters. All you have to do is Massage your hair with Rosemary Oil at the roots every time before you wash your hair. That gives lot of shining to your hair and makes it strong. Apart from using it for your hair, you can use Rosemary Oil for massage and in Aromatherapy. You can use Rosemary Oil in Italian Cooking and for some chicken recipes. But I suggest to make separate portions for each purpose and store them separately.
Homemade Rosemary Oil becomes nice Holiday Gift for your family and friends for upcoming holidays. Here comes the recipe, Njoy!


Ingredients:
Rosemary Leaves - 1 cup
Olive Oil - 1 Cup

Things you need:
Mortar and Pestal
Mason Jar ( or Air tight container)

Method:
  • Cut the Rosemary strands into pieces. You can leave the stems, the leaves are little thorny, I suggest to use gloves. 
  • In Mortar crush the leaves roughly along with their stems. 
  • Take a clean Mason Jar and dry it with towel ( if should not have any moisture in it). First place the crushed Rosemary Strands and pour a cup of Oil in it.



  • Secure the Jar with tight lid and store it in the window sill for 2 days where sun light comes. Then store in the dark place for 15 days.

  • After 15 days you will notice the Rosemary gets dried in the Jar, Strain the oil squeeze the Rosemary to get all the thick extracts from it. Discard the dried Rosemary and dry extracts.




  • Now Store the oil in separate jar and use it daily in your bath or for your body massage or for your hair.

Homemade Rosemary Oil

Notes:
  • Some recipes stated to boil the oil with Rosemary, but i preferred sun dried method as it is natural procedure.  

As there is more Rosemary in my garden I am looking for other ideas with Rosemary as well, if you have any ideas please do share with me!

see you next time,
until then take care
-Mythreyi