Sooji Halwa/Sheera/Semolina Crumble with Cashews and Cranberries. Vegan Diwali recipe

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Sooji Halwa, sheera for Diwali. Semolina sheera is like a crumble with nuts and dried fruit and roasted semolina and sugar. Try it!
 

Back from a short break.. Mofo month was so super busy that for the past 3 days I did not want to make anything new, take pictures or look at the blog:) So we spent most of the days watching sappy romantic hindi Movies and a bit of house hunting. One reason for the movie marathon being, Yash Chopra, one of the long time director and producer of some of the iconic films, passed way last week. I had to watch some of those melodramatic love stories, song and dance sequences that so many of us remember, the songs lyrics, scene lines by heart. If you’d like to watch some hindi movies, there are a few Yash chopra movies on Netflix and free to watch on youtube too.

Are you as worked up about the election as me! If you havent voted yet, Please do! Each one counts.. 



Before I can plunge into Thanksgiving recipes, there is Diwali on November 13! Lots of sweets and savories to be made, friends to be visited, and Diyas(oil filled lamps) to be lit. So here is the simple Sheera(Suji Halwa), that can be made with any coarsely ground/broken grain like coarse wheat flour, rice flour, cream of rice, Quinoa, millet, hot cereal.

Sheera(can be a Crumbly or fudgy dessert) is usually made with semolina roasted in Ghee(clarified butter), spiced with cardamom or saffron and loaded with nuts and raisins. This version is roasted in earth balance, with cashews and dried cranberries and spiced with cardamom. The cranberries are an amazing addition to this halwa, making it just slightly different from the usual, and deliciously intriguing.
With them cranberries, this crumble can be used as a dessert topping for any thanksgiving or holiday dessert too.

More Indian Sweets recipes here 🙂



Sure, I am still confused about what we follow now, what is actually written in the religious texts and the actions of gods or their re-incarnations in how the beliefs turned out. The gist of the festival however, is celebrating the victory of Good over Evil. Which needs to be celebrated, the message talked about, interpreted. Hopefully my interpretations with the delicious compassionate sweets options will work as Temptivism.:)

It is the same struggle at every event. Be it a baby shower, full of dairy intense foods, taking food away from one baby to celebrate another. Be it a religious event celebrating a message, where the message itself gets lost. Being the hyper sensitive person that I am, it is a struggle to not judge and be kind to the friends around, to patiently wait and hope that some things will click some day.. hopefully, they will.. hopefully the goodness of compassion will win over the easy unkind ways, hopefully..
Till then, in this house, we celebrate with veganized Indian desserts and savories.



Steps:

In a pan, add the earth balance or oil and heat on low-medium heat.
Add in the semolina or cream of rice or any other grain(coarsely ground grain). Mix well with the oil.



Roast for 8-9 minutes, stirring occasionally, until fragrant and there is slight change in color.



Add in the cashews and cranberries and roast for another minute.



Add in the sugar( and salt if you dint use earth balance) and cardamom powder and/or crushed saffron strands(or use both).



Give it a quick mix.
Add in hot water and mix to combine.



Cover the pan and cook for 2 minutes on low heat.



Uncover, mix again, take off heat, cover and let sit for another 2 minutes before serving.
Top with chopped roasted or raw cashews, pistachios.

As you can tell, I took several pictures again. It was easier with the Pizzas, just 2 boards, limited composition, fewer pictures with every post:)
Prettyyyy.. and yummylicious.



Sooji Halwa/Sheera- Semolina crumble with Cashews and dried Cranberries
Allergy Information: Dairy, egg, corn, soy, yeast free. Can be made nutfree and glutenfree
Makes 1 medium bowl full, serves 2.

Ingredients:
1/2 cup Semolina(cream of wheat)- use cream of rice/brown rice flour/coarse grain flour for Glutenfree version
1 – 1.5 Tablespoons Earth balance butter, or coconut oil or organic canola oil
1/3 cup warm-hot water
3 Tablespoons ground raw sugar(4 if you like it sweeter)
1/8 teaspoon cardamom powder or saffron strands
pinch of salt(if using oil)
1/4 cup cashew pieces
1/4 cup dried cranberries( or use golden raisins)

Variations: Use different nuts, dried fruits, raisins. Use 1/2 cup non dairy milk instead of water, for a smooth lumpy halwa. Use sunflower or melon seeds instead of nuts.

Method:
In a pan, add the earth balance or oil and heat on low-medium heat.
Add in the semolina or cream of rice or any other grain(coarsely ground grain). Mix well with the oil.
Roast for 8-9 minutes, stirring occasionally, until fragrant and there is slight change in color.
Add in the cashews and cranberries and roast for another minute.
(You can also roast the cashews and cranberries in oil separately for a minute and add them.)
Add in the sugar(and salt if you dint use earth balance) and cardamom powder and/or crushed saffron strands(or use both).
Give it a quick mix.
Add in hot water and mix to combine.
Cover the pan and cook for 2 minutes on low heat.
(If you like your halwa more lumpy, then add another 1/4 cup water. Water quantity depends on the grain used too)
Uncover, mix again, take off heat, cover and let sit for another 2 minutes before serving.
Top with chopped roasted or raw cashews, pistachios.




Everytime we consume Ghee, Paneer filled Indian sweets, Please think about where it comes from. Ghee and paneer both take 20+ pounds of Milk to produce just 1 pound. 
Dairy consumption is linked to increased risk of Diabetes and Heart Disease.
8 million surplus calves are slaughtered each year in India. Thats 1 in every 11 seconds. That is surplus calves, the calves left after being absorbed by the dairy and meat industry. 

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