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Lauki / Dudhi halwa served in a silver bowl
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Lauki Halwa | Dudhi / Bottle gourd Halwa

Halwa is an essential part of Indian dessert menu and this Lauki Halwa made with bottle gourd, sugar, milk and Khoa (milk solids) is very delicious and a great use of the vegetable harvested from the backyard.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Total Time1 hr
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Indian
Diet: Vegetarian
Servings: 10 servings
Calories: 306kcal
Author: Sandhya Ramakrishnan

Equipment

  • Box grater

Ingredients

  • 4 cups Lauki / Bottle Gourd Grated and tightly packed
  • 1 ½ cups sugar Makes medium sweet
  • 1 cup Milk Preferably whole milk
  • 1 cup Khoya / khoa / milk solids
  • 4 tablespoon Ghee
  • ¼ cup Dry fruits I used a mix of almonds, cashews and raisins
  • few threads Saffron optional or use a pinch of food coloring
  • ½ teaspoon Cardamom powder

Instructions

  • First begin with removing the skin of the lauki and then remove the seeds from the inside. If the lauki is tender, you will notice that they will have less seeds and also the seeds are very soft.
  • Next, using a box grater, grate the lauki. Measure the grated lauki. This measurement is what we will use to determine the amount of sugar to be used in the halwa.
  • In a medium saute pan, add the crumbled khoa / khoya / milk solids and cook it on low heat. You will notice that the khoa would start to release fat and will start changing color. Roast it for 2 to 3 minutes until light golden brown and then remove it on a plate.
  • In the same pan, heat a little ghee and fry the chopped dry fruits. Remove them on a plate as well and keep it aside until we are finished cooking the dudhi halwa.
  • Heat a wide pan on medium heat and add ghee. Add the grated lauki to the pan and start sauteing the lauki until it dries up a bit and also softens. About 5 to 7 minutes. (step 1)
  • Now add the milk and let it cook covered until the bottle gourd cooks completely. Then remove the lid and continue cooking until all the liquid evaporates. (step 2)
  • Add the sugar and mix well. (step 3)
  • You will notice that the halwa becomes liquid after the sugar is added. (step 4)
  • Keep cooking and then add saffron threads (step 5) and cardamom powder (step 6).
  • Once the dudhi halwa becomes semi solid, add the prepared khoa and fried nuts and mix well. (step 7)
  • Add the remaining ghee and keep cooking the halwa until it becomes thicker and starts to leave the sides of the pan.
  • Serve warm or chilled.

Notes

EXPERT TIPS
  • You could squeeze the liquid out of the lauki after grating. I did not squeeze any out as I didn’t want to lose the nutrition in the liquid. If you did squeeze the liquid, use it any gravy or when kneading the dough for roti.
  • Roasting the khoa / milk solids gives it a very nice flavor. It is optional but I would highly recommend.
  • Sauteing the lauki in ghee also gives the halwa a lot of a flaor. This step can also be skipped and the bottle gourd can be cooked directly in milk.
  • Use whole milk to make the lauki halwa, as using whole milk ensures that the milk does not curdle.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
  • What happens if the milk curdles – If the milk curdles when added to the lauki, do not panic! It is alright and continue cooking the lauki until it is dry. The milk solid that remains will be like soft paneer that works just fine in the recipe. And once we add the khoa, you won;t even notice the difference.
  • What if my lauki is butter – Discard the lauki if it is bitter. It is not recommended to use bitter lauki for any recipe.
  • What to use if Khoa is not available – If Khoa / khoya is not available, increase the quantity of milk. Use about 2 cups of whole milk instead of one cup for the richer taste. If you have milk powder, you could add that in the end as well instead of khoa.

Nutrition

Calories: 306kcal | Carbohydrates: 40g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 23mg | Sodium: 77mg | Potassium: 136mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 31g | Vitamin A: 147IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 213mg | Iron: 1mg