Doodhi or Bottle Gourd Halwa
1 cup (and a little more) Doodhi grated (approx)
2 tsp Ghee (tastes better with home made ghee)
½ cup sugar
1 tblspn water
Raisins and cashew nuts
Kesar or saffron strands
In a kadhai/wok add the grated doodhi and ghee. Fry till the doodhi wilts and you get a nice aroma. Please do this on a low flame and stir constantly to prevent it from burning.
I had not measured the amount of grated doodhi before but did so after frying it was 1 cup. Keep aside.
In the same kadhai/wok add the cashew nuts and raisins and stir fry till the cashew nuts are slightly brown. Remove and mix with the fried bottle gourd, elaichi and saffron. I used the fine pieces that we get here called kani do buy it when you come down to Goa it can be used very conveniently in most gravy and is cheaper than the regular cashew nut.
Now in the same kadhai/wok add the sugar and water. Heat and stir till sugar melts. Boil add a drop of the syrup added to a cup of water. The drop of syrup should form a soft ball. Your syrup is ready.
Now add the mixed bottle gourd and stir. The whole mixture becomes watery don’t panic. Continue boiling it on low flame stirring occasionally. Till the mix come to the centre and forms a lump. Continue heating for about 5 minutes again on low flame stir constantly.
Switch off the gas and cool a bit. Form balls and serve.
P.S.: 1.If you want the halwa in a form of cubes continue heating the mixture. You will understand that the halwa is done when the sugar starts crystallising on the sides of the vessel. Remove on a greased tray. Pat with another small plate greased side down. Cut when slightly warm.
2. You can also use mava or khoya to get a richer halwa.