Traditionally made with the reddish/pinkish (salmon colored ) carrots in the Northern parts of India, this much loved sweet dish has undergone various transformations in my own kitchen. First came the substitution of carrots – Orange for the salmon colored ones . Finding those carrots proved to be an almost impossible task. When they surface, it’s only one in a bunch. So I switched to using the orange ones.
Then came the substitution of the Mava/khoya with ricotta cheese. Not that I can’t find Mava at the Indian Grocery store, but the fact that it usually is more than a couple of months old and does not taste anything like fresh Mava, I did the next best thing- substitute with Ricotta cheese. There always is an option of making your own Mava, but Ricotta cheese works well in this dish.
The final substitution came in the form of technique. The orange carrots that we buy here, get cooked to a mush in no time. So the traditional method of cooking them over stove top with a lot of milk, does not work for me. Instead, I microwave them for a few minutes until the carrots are tender but not mushy. The result of all this substitution is a gorgeous orange colored dessert that is a mouthful of sweet delight.
The Gajar Halwa with Ricotta cheese is the easiest way to get the dessert fix for a party.