Suji ka halwa or Sheera is a classic Indian semolina pudding made with sugar, ghee and dry fruits. The recipe I have shared is a family heirloom recipe. We have been making this suji halwa recipe for decades during family get togethers, special occasions & festivals. The sooji halwa recipe can be easily halved, doubled or tripled.
Crush the green cardamom seeds to a fine powder in a mortar-pestle and keep aside. Remove the husks
Keep a kadai or pan on a low flame.
Add the ghee and when the ghee is heating up, do the following.
Take the sugar and water in another pan.
Keep this pan on a medium to high flame and let the sugar solution come to a boil.
Once the ghee becomes hot, add the suji (semolina) and cashews and stir.
Keep on stirring the suji (semolina) so that the grains does not stick to the pan and are roasted evenly.
Meanwhile keep your attention on the sugar solution also.
If the mixture starts to boil, then lower the flame and let it simmer.
Keep on roasting and stirring the semolina for 7 to 8 minutes till the grains change their color and when the cashews also change to a light golden or golden.
You have to roast sooji till you can see the ghee getting separated. The color of the suji or rava should not become brown. There will also be a fragrant aroma of suji and ghee in your kitchen.
Remember that the roasting rava is very important. If the rava not is not roasted well then you won't get the best texture in the halwa and there will be slightly raw taste.
Then add the cardamom powder, chironji, raisins and edible camphor (optional). Mix very well.
Making suji ka halwa or sheera
Stir and then add the bubbling hot sugar solution slowly to the fried suji mixture.
Be careful as the mixture has the tendency to splutter.
Be quick enough to stir. The sooji will begin to absorb the water and swell.
Keep on stirring often till the whole mixture starts thickening and starts to leave the edges of the kadai or pan.
Serve sooji halwa hot or warm or when cooled at room temperature.
It can be had as a sweet snack or served as a dessert after meals.
Store any leftovers in the fridge in an air tight container for 1 to 2 days. Reheat in a pan for while serving.
Type of suji: Use the fine variety of suji for making halwa. Ensure that your rava is fresh, within its shelf period and does not have insects or mold and is not rancid.
Scaling: Recipe can be halved or doubled or tripled.
Edible camphor: Add a pinch of edible camphor if you are making suji halwa for religious occasions.
Temperature: When adding the sugar solution to the rava, it has to be boiling and bubbling hot. If the sugar solution becomes warm, then heat it up till it comes to a boil. The fried rava mixture also has to be hot when the sugar solution is added.
Multi-cooking: When you begin roasting the rava, at the same time, keep the sugar solution to boil on another burner.
Adding less amounts: You can reduce both the amount of sugar and ghee. For less sweet taste in rava sheera, add ¼ cup sugar.
Sweetener: Jaggery can be also added instead of sugar. First, add jaggery in water and heat the water till it becomes warm. When all the jaggery is dissolved, strain the solution to get rid of impurities. Put the strained solution back in the pan and heat till it comes to a boil.
Liquids: You can add milk instead of water.
Flavorings & Nuts: You can add your choice of dry fruits and nuts. For flavoring and aroma apart from cardamom powder you can also add saffron strands or even rose water.