Happy Diwali to all those who celebrate! I have two ‘Diwali special’ recipes for you and both of them have cashew nuts as the main ingredient. And both the recipes are extremely simple and easy! But most importantly the end products are absolutely delicious!
The first one I will share in this post is the recipe for sugar free Kaju Katli! Bet you can feel my excitement! Having gone refined sugar free since last two years, Kaju Katli had gone out of my life too sadly 🙁 But I had been meaning to experiment making Kaju Katli using honey and finally for this Diwali I was able to try it. And pleased to inform you that it was a super duper success! Yipee!
My son loves Kaju Katli. in fact that is the ONLY Indian sweet that he will eat! So when he came home from school I told him there was Kaju Katli in the fridge. He quickly went to grab it and had a bite. ‘Hmm… very good mom!’ he said. I said to him – “And guess what?” . He immediately responded knowing how much I detest refined white sugar, “You must have not added sugar…so, what did you add?” .
I smiled and replied ‘Honey, I just added some honey!” 🙂 Also added rose flavor instead of cardamom. That coupled with the natural floral tint of the honey made this Kaju Katli absolutely fragrant and delectable. It was the perfect offering for a Diwali Pooja.
And guess what else was perfect? Fresh flowers! Yes this year the weather has been so warm until this week that my garden has still been blooming.This is so unusual for us to have flowers in our garden for Diwali! Don’t you love it when that happens? I consider it as a gift from the heavens!
Have a Happy Diwali and stay blessed! And look out for my next post which also has cashews in it!
A healthy and delectable version of the traditional Cashew nut barfi or Kaju Katli made with cashew nuts and honey and infused with a rose flavor.
1½ cups cashew nuts whole
½ cup honey
1 tbsp water
1-2 drops of rose extract
In a skillet or a frying pan, dry roast the cashew nuts on a low flame for about 5 mins stirring continuously to avoid burning. The cashew nuts should only slightly change color (with some light brown spots). Turn heat off.
Transfer the roasted cashew nuts to a food processor and pulse for about 10-20 secs until you get a coarse powder. Take care not too grind too much or you might get lumpy cashew butter. Keep aside.
In a medium size cooking pot, add the honey and the water. Heat until the mixture begins to bubble. Immediately add the ground cashew powder and mix using a spoon or spatula until all the powder is mixed well with the honey and you get a wet pasty mixture. Turn heat off.
Place a large sheet of parchment paper on the kitchen counter(or a large tray). Dump the hot cashew mixture onto the parchment paper.
Take another parchment paper sheet and place it over the mixture to cover it. Now use a rolling pin to flatten the mixture from all sides.
Now place this flattened spread out mixture along with the parchment paper onto a tray and keep in the freezer for about 30 mins (or refrigerator for 1 hour).
After the mixture has turned firm, remove from the freezer (or refrigerator) and cut into diamonds or squares.
Keep the Kaju Katli pieces in the refrigerator until serving.
Roast the cashew nuts on low heat so that they don't turn brown in color. Store the kaju Barfis in the refrigerator since they become sticky at room temperature. You can try using maple syrup for honey too although I haven't tried it yet.
There is a reason Diwali is the most loved and most celebrated festival for all Hindus – it is a festival that spans 5 days! No wonder everyone loves it! In India kids get extended holidays during Diwali season and most offices are also closed for all the key Diwali days. Alas no such luck for us folks who are outside of India. But nevertheless we do have extended celebrations too here which spans across multiple weekends! Hey it just comes once a year so why not? 🙂 Anyways, tomorrow is the 3rd day or the main day of Diwali and Goddess Lakshmi is worshipped, along with Lord Ganesha. For folks who would like to read more about Diwali and the significance of all the 5 days of Diwali, check this link out. Also, a fellow blogger, Annett Bell, just posted a wonderful article on Diwali complete with beautiful images on her ‘Tales along the way’ blog – You can check out her post here.
So I have been making the Diwali goodies one by one and last night I wanted to make something sweet. I had been wanting to make Cashew nut Halwa (Kaju Katli as it is called) but I also wanted to reduce the sugar content that I saw in most recipes. Last year I had made almond date halwa and so I thought why not cashew date halwa? So there you go – my experiment was successful. Extremely finger licking delicious halwa this one! You really need to lick the fingers since the halwa turned out very soft and sticky 🙂 I will probably reduce the quantity of butter a tad bit next time I think but other than that I wouldn’t change a thing! I added saffron to flavor but you could use cardamom as well. Yummy halwa! One can definitely indulge a bit during Diwali don’t you think?