Moong dal halwa is a rich, sumptuous and lip-smacking delicacy with its roots in Rajasthan, India. However, the sweet dish is quite popular in a lot of other cultures as well. The main ingredient of this delicacy is skinless split green gram that is a rich source of nutrients like protein, folate, magnesium, manganese and fiber. Eating one serving of this lentil daily is considered to be nutritious and healthy.
While this dal is often eaten in its boiled form having salt and spices, it is also a component of various dishes. The lentil is used in a popular sweet dish where it is mixed with pure ghee, milk, water and sugar. This delicacy sprinkled with lots of nuts is served hot. The dessert is often prepared in winters as it gives warmth to the body and it is high in calories. Also it is served at almost all parties on special occasions, festivals and formal lunch and dinner. Right! It is ‘moong ki dal ka halwa’.
Although, making moong dal halwa involves lots of time and effort but with few easy tips, you can prepare it at home towards perfection.
Here is the recipe for making this very rich sweet with loads of pure ghee and dry fruits:
Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 90 minutes
Skinless split green gram (yellow moong dal): 500 grams
Pure ghee: 650 grams
Sugar: 900 grams
Water: 500 litre
Milk: 500 litre
Cardamom powder: ½ tsp
Saffron strands: 3 pinches
Unsalted pistachios: 20
Melon seeds: 2 tbsp
Chirongi: 2 tbsp
Raisins: ½ cup
Wash moong dal thoroughly and soak it in plenty of water for three hours. Drain the water and grind it in a coarse paste in a food processor without adding water. Chop cashews, almonds and pistachios. Soak saffron strands in three tablespoons of milk. Crush three to four green cardamoms to a fine powder.Put a thick bottomed big pan on flame and turn the flame on. Put ghee in the pan and turn the flame to medium-low. Add dal paste and cook it on low flame for 60 minutes stirring continuously. After 60 minutes, the texture of the dal paste will become like suji ka halwa and it will turn in golden brown colour. You will see it leaving ghee on the sides. Add all chopped dry fruits, chirongi, melon seeds and raisins and stir well for five minutes on low flame. The dry fruits will also get roasted. Add saffron strands soaked in milk. It will change the colour of the halwa. In a separate pan add milk and water. Add sugar and stir well. Give this solution a boil on high flame. Simmer on low flame for 10 minutes. Prepare this sugar syrup simultaneously while roasting the dal paste and keep aside.
Add this sugar syrup in roasted dal paste and stir continuously on low flame. The water will be absorbed by the roasted dal paste soon and the halwa will become dry. Turn off the flame and transfer it in the serving dish. Serve hot.
Tips to make perfect moong dal halwa:
Use a heavy bottomed pan to make this halwa.
Make a coarse paste of soaked moong dal. Do not blend it to a smooth paste and it should not be runny. Grind it coarse without adding water to give the perfect texture.
Pour enough ghee as required to give this halwa the perfect flavour, aroma and appearance. Keep dieting at bay when you are making this halwa. Ghee is the soul of this sweet dish.
Roast coarsely ground dal on low flame from beginning till end. Never roast it on medium or high flame. It is necessary for the best final outcome.
Keep stirring the halwa constantly until it starts leaving ghee on the sides and turns in golden brown colour. Then also you have to stir it quite frequently. Stirring continuously gives the halwa its authentic flavour and prevents it from burning.
Make sure to add few saffron strands, freshly crushed cardamom powder and lots of dry fruits to give the halwa an aromatic rich taste.
Moong dal halwa is characteristically loaded with ghee. It can be stored in refrigerator for 15 to 20 days in an airtight container. When gently warmed before eating, it simply glistens with the sheen of the ghee.