Sugar free Dates Carrot Halwa

My second sweet recipe for Navaratri after Mango Kesar Peda is this sugar free dates carrot halwa which is not only tasty but very healthy too. A healthier alternative to the regular carrot halwa which uses refined sugar.

I got this idea from my Dates Carrot cake which does not need sugar nor jaggery for its sweetness. Dates and carrots combine so well making it a heaven made match that it does not need anything else for sweetness.

So I decided to use this perfect match to make a healthier version of carrot halwa and I was so happy when it came out so delicious. My kids who absolutely adore carrot halwa did not realise the difference at all. They relished it a lot and I was one happy mommy. After that, it’s become a regular dessert for us and I can’t be happier.

Hope you all try and love it too. Healthier alternatives are not only an option but a need too. We should respect our body and eat as healthy as possible. Happy and healthy cooking!

RECIPE:

Ingredients:

3 Cups grated Carrots {I took 3 large carrots}

8 Dates { I used Khudri variety} * to make 1 Cup Dates paste

2 Tbsp Ghee

3 to 4 Dates

8 to 10 Cashews

8 to 10 golden Raisins

Step by step recipe:

1. Soak the 8 dates (deseeded) in water enough to soak it, for about 15 mins. Also keep grated carrots ready.

2. Grind dates in the soaked water to a smooth paste (in about 3 Tbsp water). Keep aside. (It gave me 1 Cup Dates paste.)

3. Heat ghee in a pan and add deseeded and quartered dates, cashews and raisins. Fry till cashews turn golden.

4. Now add the grated carrots and fry on medium flame till the carrots loses its rawness and change colour. Takes about 5 mins.

5. Now add the dates paste and mix well. Cook on medium flame till the carrots turn soft and the mixture leaves the sides of the pan getting well combined. (Takes another 5 to 8 mins. Do a taste test to see if the carrots are cooked well. If not, cook for little while more.)

6. Remove from flame and serve warm.

Notes:

* This halwa gets tastier when kept for couple of hours before serving as the carrots absorb the dates paste well and gets more delicious. So prepare little while beforehand if you have time.

* This is not like the regular carrot halwa with milk and sugar but definitely a healthier alternative and very tasty too for sure.

* I have purposely not added milk to this as dates is an ingredient. Dates are rich in iron whereas milk is calcium rich. Calcium hinders iron absorption in the body when consumed together. So I skipped milk in this halwa to make it more beneficial to the body. {Just as an after note, Vitamin C rich foods (lemon, tomato, orange) enhance absorption of iron in the body. So always consume them together with iron rich foods when possible.}

* 8 dates making 1 cup dates paste is perfect sweet for 3 Cups grated carrots. Lesser than that might not taste as good and more might be extra sweet while masking the taste of carrots.

* I have also not cooked carrots for long like traditional carrot halwa recipe as I did not want to reduce the nutritional value by doing so. Just saute well in ghee for 5 mins and then cook in dates paste for 5 to 8 mins. It will cook well.

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