Apple Sheera or Halwa or Pudding is a very classic, delicious and flavorful dessert prepared in less than 30 minutes. A perfect way to satisfy all your sweet cravings.
This sweet is very special to me as this was the first sweet I prepared for my husband and till date he keeps complimenting me whenever I prepare this sweet. Whenever he has sweet cravings, I end up preparing this tasty treat for him. It may be plain sooji sheera, or semolina halwa using peaches, pineapples, mango or apple. It all tastes equally good.
This dessert is generally prepared in most Indian homes during family gatherings or pooja. It does not require much preparation. It is also called as sooji halwa or rava kesari. Sooji or rava means semolina. Traditionally, sheera means a dessert prepared using sooji (semolina), sugar and ghee (brown butter). Addition of ghee gives the dish a nutty flavor, and looks glossy. The taste may not vary but you will see a variation in texture when you reduce the amount of butter (ghee). I generally love to cut down on fat and reduce the amount of butter to more half of what is used in traditional recipes. But if you are ghee or butter lover, feel free to use double the amount given in the recipe 🙂
The crunchiness from fruits and nuts, the glossy texture from butter, caramelized apples and sweet cardamom flavor makes this dessert simply irresistible.
Few easy tips and tricks to get it right : If you are using butter instead of ghee, to get authentic taste melt the butter on medium heat and continue cooking till it becomes aromatic and turn golden brown in color (i.e. brown butter or ghee). See that the dry fruits are roasted or fried on medium flame until golden in color. Saute the sooji or semolina on medium flame until you get nice nutty aroma. Be careful not to burn it. To cook semolina make sure you add boiling water. But, exercise caution as semolina spills out easily, therefore make sure you turn down the heat to to low when adding boiling water. To avoid any lumps, use whisk while adding boiling water and keep stirring. Sooji cooks very fast , i.e. in 2 to 3 minutes. Make sure you add sugar only after semolina is cooked completely. Else the final texture of the dessert will be affected. Lastly, add cardamom as desired and additional ghee or butter if needed. You can also add saffron threads for additional flavor.
Apple Sheera / Pudding / Halwa
- 1 ¼ cup Apples, peeled and finely chopped
- 4 tablespoon Butter or Ghee
- 2 tablespoon Cashews chopped
- 2 tbsp Almonds chopped
- 1 tablespoon Raisins
- 1 cup Semolina or Sooji
- 2 ½ cup Boiling water
- 1 cup Sugar
- ¼ to ½ teaspoon Cardamom powder
- In a non-stick pan, melt the butter on medium flame. Add chopped almonds and cashews. Once it starts turning light golden in color add chopped apples and raisins and saute it continuously for about 6 to 8 minutes or until till just tender.
- Add sooji or semolina and saute on medium flame for 4 to 5 minutes stirring continuously till you get a nice aroma. Make sure you do not burn them.
- To the sauteed sooji / semolina, add boiling water and mix continuously on medium to low flame for 2 minutes so that there are no lumps. For better results you can use whisk while adding water. Semolina can spill out easily, so make sure the flame is low while adding hot boiling water.
- Next add sugar and continue cooking for another 2 to 3 minutes stirring continuously.
- Finally add cardamom powder, mix well and switch off the flame. If you like to add any additional butter, you can add it at this point.
- Apple Sheera is now ready. Serve and Enjoy!
- To cut down the fat, I have reduced the butter (ghee) to 4 tbsp. You may add upto ½ cup or as desired.
- If you like the apple chunks in the recipe just like we do, make sure not to overcook the apples. Else, it will begin to fall apart and become an apple puree instead.
- You can vary the amount of dry fruits and nuts in the recipe as desired.
- You can also transfer the hot sheera to a greased plate about ½ inch deep. Allow it to cool completely and then cut them into squares so that you can serve it as halwa or fudge.
- Add the sugar only after semolina or sooji is cooked in water. Else the final texture of the sweet will be ruined.
- For additional flavor you can even add saffron strands.
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