Badam halwa is a rich, indulgent, nutty South Indian halwa prepared mostly from three ingredients: blanched almonds, ghee (clarified butter), and sugar. One of the best almond halwa recipes is this badam halwa. It will undoubtedly remind you of badam halwa found in South Indian sweet stores.
The recipe makes a delicious badam halwa with just the right amount of sweetness and a delightful texture that is neither too soft nor too firm, but somewhere in the middle. When you eat the halwa, it offers you a heavenly experience. This is a rich dish that only requires a few spoonfuls.
If at all possible, use mamra almonds to make a delicious halwa. However, any good quality almonds will suffice. Because it is a rich halwa with ghee and dry fruits, it is best made and served on festivals and special occasions.
How to make Badam Halwa
1. Rinse the almonds in cold water once or twice. Then soak 1⁄2 cup badam in 1 cup boiling hot water in a dish. Cover the badam and blanch it for 30 to 45 minutes. You can even soak the badam in water overnight if you like.
2. In a separate bowl, soak a little saffron strands in 1 tablespoon warm or hot water. Saffron is used to add colour and aroma to the dish. If you don't have saffron on hand, use 1/2 teaspoon cardamom powder instead. After the halwa has been cooked, add the cardamom powder.
3. Remove the almonds from the water and set aside. Simply press each almond and the skin will easily peel away.
4. Mix the blanched and peeled almonds in a grinder or blender.
5. Add 1/3 cup water and crush the almonds until they have the consistency of fine rava or sooji (cream of wheat). You can grind in batches or use the pulse option in the grinder. Grind for a few seconds, scrape the sides, and fill the grinder jar with unground whole almonds. Grind the almond paste until it has a rava-like consistency. Make sure it's not too fine.
6. Preheat a large, heavy-bottomed skillet over medium-low heat. Place all of the almond paste in a pan right now. Scrape the edges and bottom of the jar with a silicon spatula or spoon to collect the almond paste.
7. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring constantly, until the almond paste releases its aroma. After that, add the sugar.
8. Stir the almond paste thoroughly with a spatula to ensure that the sugar is evenly mixed.
9. The mixture will begin to thicken and come together. Cook on a low flame for 5 to 6 minutes after adding the sugar.
10. Now add the soaked saffron solution and mix well.
11. We'll start adding ghee (clarified butter) in small batches now. 2 tablespoons ghee should be added first.
12. Cook until the halwa mixture absorbs all of the ghee. It will take roughly 1 to 2 minutes to complete this task. Continue to add ghee in batches in this manner. Cook the halwa over a low heat setting.
13. The halwa will thicken and begin to pull away from the pan's sides. When you stir the halwa, you will notice holes.
14. To taste, take a small amount of the halwa mixture. Allow to cool for a few minutes before rolling into a ball. It should form a smooth, soft ball and not be sticky or damp. It usually takes around 10 minutes of continuous stirring after adding the ghee to achieve the desired consistency of halwa.
15. When the halwa is done, turn off the heat. Fill the container with all of the badam halwa and leave it aside. The halwa can then be scooped out and served.
Note: If you are adding cardamom powder in place of saffron strands, then add at this step and mix well.
16. Badam halwa can be served either warm or cold. This halwa will keep at room temperature for 1 to 2 days. It can also be kept in the refrigerator.