Badam Halwa (Sheero) with a Toor Dal Twist - A Healthy Fusion!!

Back in India, Sooji Halwa is a simple sweet which is made in every household to cater to sweet cravings. But another favorite of mine has been the Badam Halwa, and this time I tried to add something healthier to it and cut down on the almonds and the fat they bring along with them; so I added the main ingredient of my another favorite - Puran Poli or Vedmi, and I made my own Toor dal and Badam Halwa, which tastes just as nice, with way fewer calories!

Let me warn you that this is not your traditional rich halwa that is loaded with ghee, so if you are looking for a recipe for a festive occasion, just replace the toor dal below with almonds and go for the original Badam Halwa. For the more daring ones up for a fusion challenge, follow the recipe below.

1 cup toor dal - soaked for at least 3 hours
1 1/4th cup whole almonds (or 1 cup almond paste)
3/4th to 1 cup of sugar (according to taste)
1/2 cup regular milk
3 tbsp of ghee
2 cups water
a pinch of saffron - soaked in 2 tbsp warm milk
3 tsp cardamom powder (optional)
slivered almond slices - for garnish

Boil 1 cup of water and soak the almonds for 1 hour. Peel the skin off the almonds when they are a bit cooled. They should slip right off without much hassle. Now grind the almonds in the blender with 4 tbsp milk to form a smooth paste.

Soak the toor dal for a couple hours at least, then pressure cook it with little water. Allow 3-4 whistles so that the dal is nicely cooked. Alternately, you can even cook the dal in your microwave; just adjust the water level starting with 1.5 cups and keep stirring in between. it should be cooked in about 10-12 mins. Now remove the daal and blend it in a mixer, without water, to form a smooth paste.

Melt the sugar with the 1 cup of water in a saucepan. Let this sugar syrup come to a rolling boil. The moment it starts getting a little viscous and thick, add the ground almond paste and keep stirring well to avoid any lumps. Now add the toor dal paste and the milk and mix well so that almond and dal get blended together. Add the ghee, slowly pouring over the mixture till it gets soaked up by the latter. All the while, keep stirring.

The mixture will become slightly translucent and shiny. Once it gains the consistency similar to thick pancake batter, add the soaked saffron and the cardamom powder. Switch off the heat and let the halva cool. It will emulsify after cooling, and should become more solid. Once it's cool enough, serve it warm, garnished with slivered almonds and pistachios!!

Badam Halwa is a traditional favorite for many indians, but I think this healthier version will make it more attractive for frequent indulgences!

Related Recipes:
Kesar Elaichi Sour Cream Shrikhand
Coconut Laddoos or Coconut Burfi
Soft Bengali Rasgullas

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SMN said...

Hey Manasi.. this is such innovative idea nice combo. shud give it a try i guess..

Anonymous said...

I have to say that's a brilliant twist Mansi! using Toor dal is a really apt choice:) the color looks great, and I'm sure it tastes equally good!!


Gopi Shah said...

Hi Manasi ur recipes r awesome....i tried lot of them and this looks very healthy one. well one more thing i saw u on orkut in BVM community. I am also from BVM. I go to ur blogspot everyday. today i was not able resit myself to write a comment....keep postion recipes

Mansi said...

Thanks guys! glad you liked th twist!

Gopi - thanks for your silent support, and finally taking time to write a comment here! nice to meet a fellow BVMite...happy to know you enjoy this blog, and hope you can spread the word around:)

Cynthia said...

I've never had dal as a sweet dish. I plan to try the puran poli too.

Linda said...

Hi Mansi,

Halwa is one thing I've rarely tried to make -- I like how you've described every step to make it easy for beginners like me! Thank you so much for sharing this wonderful fusion recipe for JFI Toor Dal :)

Sreelu said...

Mansi, cool idea yaar, seems much healthier too, so less guilt I guess.

Siri said...

Nice and Goodlooking twist Mansi!

Mansi, Just a question: 'How do we disable Google Image search for our blog?' Even I want to do that!

~ Siri

desie said...

lovely 'guilt-free' treat.
i love dal and this is (to me) an unusual way to have it. will try it soon.

renuka said...

hi mansi,this is surely a different combo i'll try it sometime

Raks said...

Halwa with toor dal?!! You are right thats really a twist to badam halwa!!

musical said...

Very innovative!

Kribha said...

Unusal, but very creative. I have to try it to realize the taste.

Anonymous said...

wow, that's a neat twist, and it also combined two of my favorite recipe ingredients too! cool recipe mansi!


Meera said...

What a great recipe to reduce the calories and relish the halwa!! You are a genius. A must try for me!!

Anonymous said...

Hey Mansi,

I was browsing through internet for crispy tacos and I am so glad that I came across yours . Oh boy! I couldn't stop myself from going through each one of it. Thanks a lot for all that wonderful recipe you have posted in the site :)

I am sure you can come up with a cooking book!

Mansi said...

thanks everyone! I love trying out recipes in the kitchen and successful experiments like these are really encouragin:)

write my own cookbook?? well, if you say so!! I'll start any publishers for me?:) jokes apart, someday I really plan to launch one! fingers crossed:)