BANANA HALWA/ FUDGE- Microwave method
Its been snowing since two days now,the snow piling up everywhere.Staying indoors makes your creative juices flow once again.The ripe bananas on the the kitchen table are tempting me to try something new.My thoughts flow …..and then a flashback……Mangalore,a picturesque little seaside town where the Western Ghats meet the Arabian sea in the western coast of South India.All the years I spent there as a student ,I would always go to the Ganesh temple(Sharavu) on weekends,it had almost become a part of me while I stayed there.The temple bells, the sandal wood paste,the jasmine flowers,the rain soaked streets, the Ganesha idol there …everything felt like home to me.After taking in all the peace & tranquility the ambience of the temple had to offer, I’d step out into the rain washed streets once again,surrounded by trees sprouting with molasses & ferns all over the place,.On the way back,it was almost a ritual visiting this restaurant which seemed like a piece out of Malgudi days with its quaint little coffee cups and banana leaves to serve breakfast in.The nimble footed waiters with their white “mundus” hitched up serve you breakfast with all the affection of serving a home cooked meal.My breakfast would be masala dosa(spicy Indian pancakes with potato filling) coffee & halwa……well, if you have’nt reached heaven’s gates after worshipping in the temple, you would after taking a bite of this halwa.It was delicious beyond words.Truly at times I could not tell the reason behind my religious temple visits,was it the Ganesha or the halwa ,both went straight to my heart!
Fast forward to reality,the bananas are still on the table, the “mundu” clad waiter was a whiff of a dream,but the halwa was for real.The sudden urgency to have this halwa drives me bananas.So here I am with an Instant Banana halwa recipe,made in 15 minutes sharp, a close cousin of the halwa of yesteryears , the only difference being I saved myself the hours of stirring over a pot of boiling halwa, by using the microwave method.
Cardamom powder- 1/2 tsp
1.Warm the ghee in a microwaveable bowl for 20 seconds.
2.Add the mashed bananas, into the bowl & microwave it for 10 minutes.
3.The mashed pieces of banana would blend in with the ghee,now gently stir it with a spoon,simultaneously adding sugar & cardamom powder to it.
4.Now microwave it for another 5-10 minutes till the halwa thickens, into a golden brown consistency.
5.Transfer it to a bowl & top it with any dry fruit( cashews, pecan, pistachios) of your choice & serve after it cools down.
Enjoy a little bit of heaven in your sweet bowl.
Mundu- An Indian garment made of cotton usually worn around the waist by men in South India.
Malgudi days- A compilation of short stories by R.K.Narayan,who is one of my favorite authors.