Simple to prepare, lauki ka halwa and papita ka halwa can be a great way to use up leftover papayas and gourds in the refrigerator.
Everybody loves a bowl of gajar ka halwa. This traditional Indian dessert is nutritious and irresistibly tasty. But while carrots come with their own share of goodness, you can also try making halwa with lauki (or bottle gourd) and papita (or papaya), as these are also known for their health quotient. Lauki is generally eaten as a vegetable, cooked and served with roti or rice, while raw papaya is eaten as a fruit. But have you tried turning these nutrient-rich options into delectable desserts? Both act as brilliant heat busters for your stomach and are also helpful in tackling symptoms of constipation and digestive issues. If you haven’t yet, try these quick recipes to make lauki and papita halwa.
Lauki Ka Halwa: Bottle gourds are loaded with water and they help you keep hydrated. But if your little ones frown at the sight of lauki, given its bland taste, treat them to some mouth-watering lauki ka halwa. To make this dish, you need to peel and cut the gourd into two pieces. Then grate it one by one using a big grater, ensuring that the seeds do not come into the grated mushy stuff. Take some ghee in a pan and one green cardamom. Once it sputters, add the grated lauki and stir it well till the water in the gourd evaporates completely. Now add the milk (you may thicken it beforehand, if you wish to) and let the gourd melt. Keep stirring in between. When the gourd becomes soft, add sugar and stir it again. You may also add jaggery for a healthier option. Let the halwa thicken. Garnish with crushed cashews, almonds and a pinch of cardamom powder. Your lauki ka halwa is ready to serve.
Papita Ka Halwa: You can make papita ka halwa with raw or ripe papaya. You need to grate the papaya first and keep it aside. In a pan, add ghee; once it’s hot, add chopped almonds, cashews and raisins; saute for two or three minutes and keep them aside. Add the grated papaya. If you are making the halwa using ripe papaya, you need to cover it and cook it for some time till it softens. Add about two tablespoons of rice flour or desiccated coconut, as per your choice and go on stirring the mixture. When the papaya releases juice and softens add half a teaspoon of cardamom powder and sugar as per need. Pour a tablespoon of ghee once the halwa thickens and top it with the fried dry fruits. You may serve it hot or refrigerate it if you wish to have a cool halwa.
So, the next time you have a raw papaya which is lying in one corner of your fruit basket or a papaya that doesn’t quite seem appealing to have as a veggie, try these simple dessert recipes that are tasty as well as nutritious.
*Satarupa B Kaur has been writing professionally for a decade. Always on the go, she loves to travel, read books and enjoy playtime with her toddler, as she explores new places and food.