In any Indian celebration, desserts play a very important role during festivals. Not only are they an integral part of our sacred offerings, but also are something children and adults alike look forward to in the celebrations. But if you are someone who watches what they eat, there’s nothing better than homemade desserts to keep a tab on your health.
Desserts can be prepared at home with nourishing and wholesome ingredients that won’t affect your weight or your health. When you prepare desserts at home, it gives you complete control over what goes in it. By replacing unhealthy ingredients like sugar with healthy substitutes like ghee, jaggery, stevia powder, etc, you can reduce the risk of diabetes, obesity and various other chronic diseases.
So, if you’re confused about what desserts to make this festive season, we are here to help you with 3 great desserts that are relatively easy to prepare and will enrich the festive mood.
Besan laddus are among the healthiest desserts to binge on – festival, or no festival. Made of ghee, gram flour and dry fruits, this rustic dessert will satiate your tastebuds. What’s more - they are also easy to store and last relatively longer.
- ½ cup ghee
- 2 cup gram flour/ besan
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- ½ tsp cardamom powder
- 2 tbsp cashew nuts – chopped
- Edible silver paper
You may substitute sugar with stevia powder in all recipes for a diabetes-friendly/healthier alternative.
Do refer to details on the stevia packaging for substitution measurements.
- 1. In a large pan heat ghee and besan together.
- 2. Roast the mixture on a low flame until the besan is well combined with ghee.If the mixture turns dry, add an extra 1 tbsp of ghee.
- 3. Once the besan starts releasing the ghee, add cardamom powder to the mixture.
- 4. Continue to roast until the besan turns golden brown and grainy (this process may take approximately 25-30 minutes).
- 5. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl. Allow it to cool.
- 6. After 10 minutes, add in powdered sugar and chopped cashew nuts. Now mix everything together. You can knead the mixture with your hands, to get the perfect blend. (Note: do not add sugar if the mixture is hot, as it will melt the sugar and make the mixture watery.)
- 7. Take small portions of the mixture and roll the laddus between your palms.
- 8. Garnish with edible silver paper and dryfruits.
Badam Halwa is the festive dessert of royalty. By altering the quantity of almonds, ghee and saffron, this dessert can warm the soul with its royal taste and aroma!
- ½ cup almonds/ badam
- 1 cup of water to soak almonds
- ¼ cup milk
- 1½ tbsp ghee
- ¼ cup of sugar
- Few saffron strands
- ¼ tsp cardamom powder
- ½ cup chopped dry fruits and nuts
- 1. First, soak the almonds in warm water for 20 minutes.
- 2. Next, peel the skin of the almonds and transfer them to into a blender.
- 3. Now add milk and blend it into a smooth paste. Keep this mixture aside.
- 4. Take a large pan and add a tbsp of ghee. Sauté it for a minute on low to medium flame.
- 5. Next, add the almond paste and sugar. Keep stirring the mixture continuously till the sugar dissolves completely.
- 6. Add saffron strands. Mix well. Stir till the mixture thickens (ensure you keep the flame on low-medium)
- 7. Now add half tbsp of ghee. Keep stirring till the ghee oozes out from sides.
- 8. Next, add cardamom powder. Mix well.
- 9. Garnish with a few chopped dry fruits and nuts.
- 10. Serve hot or chilled as per your choice.
Shahi Kheer is a traditional pudding-like dessert. Made essentially of rice and dry fruits – this delicacy invariably reminds most of the fond memories of their mothers’ kitchens and the aromas that wafted out of them during every celebration. Every part of India has its own take on this recipe – here is a simple, quick version of the same.
- 1 liter milk
- cup of rice
- cup condensed milk
- tsp cardamom powder
- 4 tbsp chopped nuts
- Few saffron strands
- 1. Soak rice in water for 15 minutes.
- 2. Take milk in a pan. Stir it on a medium flame.
- 3. Once the milk begins to boil add the rice. Cook it well.
- 4. When the rice is almost done - add condensed milk.Stir the mixture well.
- 5. Now add saffron strands, cardamom powder and chopped nuts.
- 6. When the mixture thickens, switch off the flame.
- 7. Garnish with some chopped nuts.
- 8. Serve the kheer warm or chilled as per your choice.
Festivals are incomplete without desserts. There is nothing quite like an inviting table decorated with a variety of sweets. This year, amidst the pandemic, it’s a good idea to prepare your desserts at home. Not only will this ensure that you stay safe and fit, but also bring that festive vibe home. Indeed, preparing sweets at home is the best way to really celebrate any festival.
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