Diwali or Deepavali is never complete without diyas, dhamakas and desserts! A delicious meal might feel incomplete without sweets or desserts! Sweets are the kind of guilt pleasures everyone loves to indulge in! They make you go weak in the knees and warm your heart. Weddings, ceremonies, festivals, every occasion in India is celebrated with food, and the cherry on cake is definitely sweets! Rasgullas from West Bengal, Modak from Maharashtra, Ghevar from Rajasthan, Shufta from Kashmir, Mysore Pak from Karnataka, athirasam from TamilNadu, you can associate every part of the country with a sweet that is unique and delicious in its own way.
If Diwali for you is all about sweets, savouries and sumptuous food, you are not an exception. Here is a list of sweets that you can cook at home this Diwali and make it healthier and happier for your family!
1. Dry Fruit Laddu
Made of dates, raisins, almonds, figs, and a little desiccated coconut, dry fruit ladoo is both delicious and healthy! With dates and figs bringing in the sweetness, coconut bringing in the texture, and nuts bringing in the crunch factor, there’s everything in this ladoo to please the sweet tooth!
Roasted almonds (or any other nuts that you prefer), chopped raisins and fig, powdered cardamom seeds and desiccated coconut, grind all of these coarsely! Make small balls out of the course mixture, and dry fruit and nut ladoo is ready for serving! You can store these laddus in an insulated casserole or an airtight container to keep them fresh for the next few days.
2. Dates Kheer
Dates are sweet, and dates are healthy, do you need any more reason to make a kheer with dates?
All you will need is dates soaked in warm milk, almonds soaked and peeled and cashews. Blend the dates and the nuts separately. Cook the dates puree in ghee followed by the almond and cashew mix. Sprinkle cardamom powder for fragrance, and garnish with chopped dates and nuts! This kheer tastes best both when served warm or cold. If you are planning on serving it warm, store it in a casserole. You can refrigerate for a few hours if you are planning on serving it as a cold dessert.
3. Carrot Cake
Indulge in some carrot cake, and make this Diwali merrier! Loaded with healthy calories and nutrients, this carrot cake can brighten up your day instantly.
Carrots boiled in milk, palm sugar, ghee and cardamom is all you need to rustle up this delicious carrot cake! Blend the carrots, and sauté it in ghee along with palm sugar until it comes to a non-sticky consistency that doesn’t stick to the pan! Mix in some cardamom powder and empty the pan into a greased plate. Cut into diamond shapes and enjoy the carrot cake!
4. Moong Dal Halwa
Moong dal halwa is both a comfort and festive dish. Simple to cook, all you need is a handful of ingredients from your kitchen pantry to rustle up this sweet dish!
Blend the soaked moong dal and cook in ghee until you get a granular consistency. Boil milk, water, and sugar in another pan. Mix in the cooked dal and cook for 5 minutes. Add raisins, cardamom powder, and pistachios. Halwa tastes great when eaten warm. Store it in a hot case or an insulated casserole to enjoy it to the fullest.
5. Wheat Jaggery Laddu
Jaggery is a healthy substitute for sugar with all the goodness of iron, magnesium, potassium, manganese, and protein. Wheat jaggery laddus are not just healthy, but delicious as well.
Dry roast whole wheat flour on low flame till it turns fragrant. Make a syrup out of jaggery and sprinkle cardamom powder to it. Mix in the flour and knead gently making small ladoos out of it. Use ghee for binding the fragrant wheat and the flavourful jaggery syrup together! All you need are a few ingredients that you would definitely have in your kitchen and you can make these healthy ladoos in no time at all! Give them a try this Diwali!
6. Jaggery Pancake
Every child looks forward to pancake breakfast mornings! Maybe you do too! When they taste great, and are perfect to gear up your mornings, why not? Pancakes are healthy as long as you skip the sugar part. And what better substitute for sugar than jaggery? Turn your Diwali morning healthy with this recipe!
Whole wheat flour, grated jaggery, milk and a sprinkle of cardamom powder is all your need to make these amazing sweet wheat dosas! Mix the ingredients into a batter, make them like you would make dosas, but with butter or ghee! Dollops of honey or maple syrup will make the whole dish taste more delicious than it already is!
7. Moong dal Kheer
An Indian pudding with all the goodness of dry fruits, jaggery, and coconut is never a bad idea for Diwali.
Dry roasted moong dal cooked into a mushy consistency along with jaggery, cardamom powder, coconut milk makes a great payasam or kheer. To jazz it up a bit, garnish with assorted nuts fried in ghee to the kheer!
8. Wheat Appam
Crunchy on the outside and soft in the center, appams are sweets that you can indulge in during festivals, especially Diwali. Mix in wheat flour, rice flour, jaggery, cardamom, water and make it to a batter consistency, one that is a little bit thicker than your dosa batter. Fry the appams in oil or ghee. Alternately you can use the appam pan to cook these traditionally!
9. Pumpkin Halwa
With Halloween just gone, it is time to make that pumpkin halwa, which is quite raved about. Pumpkin is rich in Vitamin A, C, potassium, copper, manganese and tastes best when made into halwa!. Pumpkin might not be in your child’s list of favorite veggies, but this sweet halwa will get their attention
Boiled pumpkin cooked in ghee, along with cardamom powder and sugar turns into a halwa like the one you have never tasted! With richness of ghee and the earthy flavour of pumpkin kicking in, this halwa can definitely turn your Diwali into a sparkling one!
10. Fig Barfi
Figs are not just delicious, they are also a powerhouse of nutrients. Made out of fig, this barfi is the healthiest version of barfi there could be!
Cook chopped figs with water, dates, raisins, cardamom, and nutmeg powder until they turn mushy. Mix in nuts and cook a few more minutes and serve them on a greased plate. Sliced them into diamond shapes and serve!
Celebrate this Diwali cooking up these healthy and interesting sweets and sharing with your friends and family! Delicious and healthier than the regular store-bought desserts, these sweets are all you need to make the festival delightful!