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Kesar Badam Halwa - Almond Saffron Pudding

An easy and delicious sweet to add to a festival platter. Ground almonds sautéed in ghee, sugar and milk and flavoured with saffron and cardamom - this Badam Halwa is a rich and tasty sweet. Serve it hot, garnished with slivers of toasted almonds.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time40 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Indian
Servings: 2 cups
Author: Sujata Shukla

Ingredients

  • 1 cup Almonds
  • ¾ cup milk
  • ½ cup ghee
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • ½ tablespoon Wheat flour (optional)
  • 3 - 4 threads saffron
  • ½ teaspoon cardamom Powder
  • saffron essence (optional)

For the Garnish:

  • 4 Almonds Blanched and slivered as below.

Instructions

To Prepare the Almond powder/ flour:

  • To Blanch the Almonds:
  • Place the almonds in boiling water for 2 minutes. Drain and transfer to a bowl of cold water.
  • Drain quickly after a minute, pat dry and rub the blanched almonds with your hands or with a clean towel.
  • The peel will come off as you rub the almonds. If any stubborn peel remains, gently remove them with a sharp knife, without slicing the almond.
  • Toast the peeled almonds for 1 minute on a hot pan, on low heat. Set aside a few almonds for the garnish, after slicing them into thin slivers. Grind the rest of the almonds in a processor

To Make the Badam Halwa:

  • Heat the milk with half a cup of water, and boil on low flame for 2 minutes. Keep stirring so that the milk does not boil over the pot. Remove from the flame and set aside. Heat the ghee in a kadai/ frying pan and let it melt. I used a trusty old pan, but you could use a non-stick one instead.
  • Add the ground almond and stir it in. Sauté for about 7 minutes, stirring frequently.
  • Add the wheat flour (atta) and sauté for about 2 minutes, stirring frequently, till the raw smell of the flour disappears. This step is optional. The wheat flour gives an added texture to the dish, however if you prefer a smooth texture, then don't add the wheat flour.
  • Add the boiled milk and water, stir it in. Cook on low flame for 5 minutes, stirring continuously.
  • Stir in the sugar, sauté for 2 minutes, stirring all the while so the mixture does not catch at the bottom of the pan.
  • Add the saffron threads and a drop of saffron flavouring (if using). Sauté for 1 minute, stirring till done. I used Spice drop saffron flavouring, and it enhanced the flavours of the halwa. Turn off the stove. Add the cardamom powder and stir it in.
  • Garnish with slivers of almond, and serve hot.