The Naivedyam Way
The time has come for day-long fasting, chanting, and offerings of ‘prasad’. In the southern states, ‘Prasadam’ or ‘Naivedyam’ often includes halwa cooked with various fruits. Raw banana halwa is a delicious dish, any time of the year. Verka Milk and Verka Desi Ghee lend a wonderful flavour to its smooth and creamy texture.
- 3 – 4 Raw bananas (300 gms, without skin)
- 150 gm sugar (¾ cup)
- 5½ – 6 tbsp Verka Ghee
- 1½ cup Verka Whole Milk
- 12 each, cashew nuts and almonds
- 18 raisins
- ½ tsp ‘elaichi’ powder
- Wash the bananas well and pressure cook them with 1 cup of water. (with the skin still on)
- Cook for one whistle, turn off the flame, and shift them to a plate. Peel when cool.
- Chop the cashew nuts and almonds and keep aside with the raisins.
- Use a fork to finely mash the cooled bananas.
- Heat Verka Ghee in a wide pan and tip the mashed fruit into it. Cook on a low flame till it is slightly brown and the ghee separates out.
- Add Verka Milk and sugar and simmer till the mixture thickens in consistency.
- Add ‘elaichi’ powder and cook further.
- Grease a foil sheet, lay it out on a tray, and tranfer the warm mixture on it.
- Level well and garnish with the chopped nuts and raisins. Press them in with your palm.
- Cool further and cut into pieces before serving.
Note: Grated ‘gur’ can replace sugar in this recipe. If you don’t want to make a firm halwa to cut into pieces, simply make a fluid mixture and stop cooking before it thickens too much. Then serve this hot delight in small bowls with a topping of nuts.