White pumpkin may be used to make ‘petha,’ a more popular sweet from the city of Agra in Uttar Pradesh. The veggie itself is called so in Hindi. But in this post of mine, I have shared a White Pumpkin Halwa a.k.a Ash Gourd Halwa, which is a unique halwa preparation with a jam-like consistency. This is a famous sweet dish from South India. This delicious halwa is also known as Kashi Halwa, Dumroot Halwa, Dumrote Halwa, Kasi Halwa or Kushmanda Halwa. You’ve got to try this for sure!
About Kashi Halwa
Ash gourd or white pumpkin also has other names by which it is referred to locally in different regions of South India. For instance, it is known as ‘kumbalanga’ in Malayalam and ‘poosanikai’ in Tamil languages.
The other English names for this squash are Winter Gourd, White Melon, Ash Pumpkin, Wax Gourd, Winter Melon, Tallow Gourd, Winter Gourd.
The name of the halwa is unique considering it has South Indian origins. Not only it is popular in the Udupi and Mangalore regions, it is also often served in the Tambrahm (Tamil Brahmin) weddings. In Tamil, this halwa is called Kasi Halwa.
It could be that white pumpkin is also called ‘Kashiphal” in Hindi and hence the name of Kashi Halwa.
Since the time I had shared other recipes related to the pumpkin family, I have been getting a lot of requests for the recipe of Ash Gourd Halwa as well.
So, I finally made this White Pumpkin Halwa during the festival of Navratri, one of the years and shared it here on my blog for my readers.
This is a super simple and easy to make halwa recipe and you really won’t believe that the dish is actually made with ash gourd.
For my version of this halwa, I referred to Venkatesh Bhat’s Kashi Halwa recipe on the popular Indian OTT platform Hotstar. I have loosely adapted this recipe from there. Some definite changes that I have made in the recipe are:
- I have reduced the quantity of sugar in my version.
- I have also not strained the grated white pumpkin.
Since the quantity of ghee and sugar added in the Ash Gourd Halwa already makes it quite rich and heavy. It is better to indulge in just a few spoons of the halwa and not too much.
But if you reduce the sugar and ghee too much, then you can actually consume the halwa a bit more and relish its taste and texture as well.
You can serve this Dumroot Halwa as an after-meal dessert. You can also prepare this Kashi Halwa as a naivedyam and offer it to deities.
The same methodology can be referred to make a red pumpkin halwa as well. I have also posted a variation of yellow Pumpkin Halwa which uses less ghee and sugar.
How to make Kashi Halwa
Grate White Pumpkin and More Prep
1. Firstly, rinse and peel 315 grams ash gourd or white pumpkin. Remove the seeds and the white pith. Then, chop it in large pieces, so that you can easily grate.
2. Grate the ash gourd. Keep aside. You will need 1 cup grated ash gourd.
3. Heat 1 tablespoon ghee in a thick bottomed pan. Add 12 to 15 cashews. You can even add less cashews.
4. Sauté till the cashews turn light golden.
5. Then, add ½ tablespoons raisins. You can add less raisins or skip them.
6. Stirring often, sauté the raisins till they swell and puff up. Remove both the cashews and raisins with a slotted spoon. Keep aside.
Cook Ash Gourd
7. Lower the heat and in the same pan, add the grated ash gourd.
8. Mix very well.
9. Cover the pan with its lid and on low heat, cook the grated ash gourd till its raw aroma goes away.
10. Check after every 4 to 5 minutes. Usually ash gourd has enough water to cook in its own juices.
But if the ash gourd starts sticking to the pan or getting lightly browned and the mixture looks dry, then add water. This will depend on the water content in the ash gourd.
11. I did add water as the mixture had become dry. I added ¼ cup water and cooked the ash gourd with the lid on the pan.
12. You have to cook the ash gourd till the raw aroma goes away. It took me around 15 minutes on low heat.
Time will vary depending on the pan thickness, size, dimensions and the flame intensity. So, keep around 10 to 15 minutes time for cooking ash gourd.
Make Kashi Halwa
13. Next, add ½ cup (225 grams) sugar.
14. Mix the sugar very well with the ash gourd.
15. Then, add a generous pinch of saffron strands. Saffron strands are used to give a nice orange-yellow color to the halwa and also for the aroma.
If you do not have saffron strands, skip it or use a natural orange color extract.
16. Mix saffron with the mixture.
17. Keep on stirring and sautéing the halwa mixture on low heat.
18. Once the mixture starts thickening, you will feel a bit heavy while stirring the mixture. The lightness that was there before, won’t be there.
19. The halwa mixture has to be stirred often and sautéed on low heat, till it thickens and starts to leave the sides of the pan.
After adding sugar, it took 10 minutes for the halwa to come to the consistency as shown in the picture below.
So, it may take between 6 to 10 minutes, depending on the type of pan, metal thickness, etc.
20. Once the halwa mixture thickens and starts separating from the pan, add 1 to 2 tablespoons ghee.
21. Mix the ghee very well.
22. After adding ghee, continue to sauté on low heat till the halwa starts separating from the pan. This will take 2 to 4 minutes.
23. Then, switch off the heat and add ¼ teaspoon green cardamom powder.
24. Also, add the fried cashews and raisins.
25. Mix very well.
26. Let the Kashi Halwa cool down a bit and then serve. Avoid serving hot as it is very hot due to the sugar syrup consistency. You can even serve Dumroot Halwa warm or at room temperature.
- You can less cashews and raisins in this recipe, if you wish to. You can even skip the raisins.
- Do not overcook the halwa. This will cause it to become stringy and chewy or hard. If the halwa gets these kinds of textures, then sprinkle some hot water on it. Mix and sauté for a few minutes until the texture improves.
- Usually, ash gourd has a lot of water content in its own juices. However, if you feel that the mixture is sticking to the pan or getting lightly browned and dry, then add some water and then cook it.
- The cooking time of the halwa mixture will depend on the thickness, size and dimensions of the pan as well as the intensity of the heat.
- The saffron is generally added in this recipe to impart a lovely orange-yellow color and a typical aroma to it. If you do not have it, skip using it. Or you can even add some natural orange color extract for the desired color in the halwa.
- The best way to serve this halwa is to let it cool down a bit after preparing, as it has a sugar syrupy consistency when hot. Serve it warm or at room temperature.
- You can easily double the recipe to make a larger quantity of halwa.
More Halwa Recipes To Try!
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Kashi Halwa | Dumroot Halwa | Ash Gourd Halwa
- 2 to 3 tablespoons Ghee
- 12 to 15 cashews (kaju)
- ½ tablespoon raisins (kishmish)
- 315 grams ash gourd or 1 cup grated ash gourd (winter melon, petha, white pumpkin, wax gourd, white gourd)
- ¼ cup water – optional
- 225 grams sugar or ½ cup sugar
- 18 to 20 saffron strands (kesar)
- ¼ teaspoon green cardamom powder
Grating white pumpkin and more prep
- Firstly rinse and then peel 315 grams ash gourd or white pumpkin. Remove the seeds and the white pith. Then chop it in large pieces, so that you can easily grate.
- Grate the ash gourd using a round steel grater or a box grater. Set aside. You will need 1 cup grated ash gourd.
- Heat 1 tablespoons ghee in a thick bottomed pan. Add 12 to 15 cashews. You can even add less cashews.
- Saute till the cashews turn light golden.
- Then add raisins. You can add less raisins or skip them.
- Stirring often, saute the raisins till they swell and puff up.
- Remove both the cashews and raisins with a slotted spoon. Set aside.
Making kashi halwa
- Lower the heat and in the same pan, add the grated ash gourd. Mix very well.
- Cover the pan with its lid and cook the grated ash gourd till its raw aroma goes away.
- Do check after every 4 to 5 minutes. Usually ash gourd has enough water to cook in its own juices. But if the ash gourd starting sticking to the pan or getting lightly browned and the mixture looks dry, then add some water.
- I did add water as all of the mixture had become dry. I added ¼ cup water and cooked the ash gourd with the lid on the pan.
- You have to cook the ash gourd till all its raw aroma goes away. It took me around 15 minutes on a low flame. Time will vary depending on the pan thickness, size, dimensions and the flame intensity. So keep around 10 to 15 minutes time for cooking ash gourd.
- Now add sugar and mix it very well.
- Then add 18 to 20 saffron strands. Saffron strands are used to give a nice orange-yellow color to the halwa and also for aroma. If you do not have saffron strands, then skip it or use an orange natural coloring extract.
- Mix saffron with the mixture.
- Keep on stirring and sautéing the halwa mixture on a low heat.
- Once the mixture starts thickening, you will feel a bit heavy while stirring the mixture. The lightness that was there before won’t be there.
- The halwa mixture has to be stirred often and sautéed on a low heat till it thickens and starts to leave the sides of the pan.
- Once the halwa mixture thickens and starts separating from the pan, then add 1 to 2 tablespoons ghee.
- Mix the ghee very well.
- After adding ghee continue to sauté on a low heat till the halwa starts separating from the pan. This will take 2 to 4 minutes.
- Then switch off the heat and add the green cardamom powder.
- Also add the cashews and raisins.
- Mix very well.
- Let the kashi halwa cool down a bit and then serve. Avoid serving hot as its very hot due to the sugar syrup consistency. You can even serve white pumpkin halwa warm or at room temperature.
- You can add less cashews and raisins if you want.
- Remember not to overcook the halwa mixture as it will become stringy and chewy. If in case this happens, then sprinkle some hot water on the halwa and sauté it for a few minutes stirring often until the texture improves.
- The recipe can be doubled too.
Nutrition Info (Approximate Values)
This Kashi Halwa recipe from the archives, originally published in October 2016 has been updated and republished on January 2023.
Comments are closed.
Hi mam, can I try this halwa making after squeezing out of all water from Ash gourd.. because my kids likes to drink this water as juice.
yes you can do this. then when cooking ash gourd you can add some water if starts sticking to pan.
Shelf life of Kashi halwa?
for a week in the fridge.
I am fan of your site. I love your recipes the way you explain them. I have tried many and yes they came out very tasty. I have tried missi roti first then sundals, some south Indian and bengali dishes. My God my family and friends have fallen in love with baingun bhaja. Your whole discription helped me a lot.
I have told my friends to refer your site. I did know how to cook. Your site is helping me lot.
Mam I have a request can please post how to make churma laddoo. If you have already posted then can you please send link.
Thank you so much.??
thank you much priyanka. felt good reading your comment. i have got a couple of requests to add churma ladoos. so will add them.
Mam…will u plz guide me how to use otg…i bought 19 litre prestige otg
congrats shuchi 🙂 best is to read the manual as it explains everything. moreover if you want, some person also comes from the company to show you the working of the oven. its very easy. first you need to preheat the oven before baking. timing and temperature will depend on the recipe. if there is a timer, then you can set the timer. then place the baking pan or tray in the preheated oven and bake for required amount of minutes. you can set the time if you have the timer option in the oven. or else just keep a note from outside with a watch or stop watch. always use the middle rack for even baking and keep both the top and bottom heating rods/elements on. this helps in even baking.
looks simple and delicious ?
thanks hema 🙂
dear dassana amit thanks for sharing the good and hygienic recepies. your videos and vivid description is really good and no other blog gives so well. keep it up and greetings for navrathri.
thanks for positive views and your appreciation means a lot to us. wish you a happy navratra festival.