Pakistani winters can’t be complete with the scrumptious Gajrela. There are only three words to describe this Gajrela recipe: rich, creamy and irresistible! With the full-fat milk, almonds, carrots, cashews, and pistachios, this recipe is the epitome of perfection. It is a complete recipe for meeting your nutritional requirements. Whether you have a sweet tooth or not, this delectable recipe will surely win your heart. You will be asking for second helpings in no time. That’s a guarantee. So, without further ado, let’s dive straight into the richness of this dessert.
Origins of this dessert
Before we talk about the secrets of this divine recipe, let’s go back to where it came from. The Gajrela was first introduced in the Mughal period. It is made of Gajar, which means carrot in Urdu – hence the word Gajrela. It is similar to the Gajar ka halwa, but not quite so. Just like Kheer, this delectable dessert is a part of every winter in Pakistan.
Traditionally, the carrots are grated by hand, instead of using a food processor. It takes quite a lot of time (and work). So, you should set aside a few hours when you want to make it. Usually, the Gajrela is made in a huge pot so that you can make extra to store it.
Storing & Serving the Gajrela
You can store the Gajrela in the fridge for about a week. It is served both chilled and warm. In winters, many people like to warm it before eating. However, it tastes delicious when it is cold as well.
Many people like to serve the Gajrela with plain yoghurt. It helps to tone down the sweetness and adds a slight tang to the flavours. If you want an extra level of sweetness, you can try the Gajrela with sliced bananas. It’s simply delectable!
Also, make sure that you garnish the Gajrela with almonds and cashews before serving it. The slight crunch of the nuts with the iconic creaminess is iconic.
Secret Tips for Perfecting the Gajrela Recipe
One of the most essential tips for making the perfect Gajrela is that you should not use an instant pot or pressure cooker. It will ruin the taste. Instead, slowly cook the ingredients over low heat. You will have to stir it once in a while so that the milk does not stick to the bottom of the pan. This will bring out all the flavours of the recipe. Make sure that you don’t leave the Gajrela unattended. Otherwise, the milk and carrots will be scorched to the pan. So, make sure that you stir the ingredients properly.
Furthermore, you must use fresh and young carrots for this recipe. The mature carrots are more fibrous and don’t have the same flavour. A tip for choosing the right carrots is to taste them before you use them. Young carrots are usually sweeter and have the perfect texture for the Gajrela recipe.
Are you thinking about calories? Don’t! This delicious recipe is worth the calories. If you want, you can make it sugar-free as well. However, the workout you do while grating the carrots can make up for the calories!
- ½ cup sliced almonds
- ½ cup of cashews
- ½ cup of pistachios
- 3 tbsp of ghee
- 2 cups of grated carrot
- 4 cups full-fat milk
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 2 green cardamomo seeds
- Wash the carrots, and then peel them with a vegetable peeler. Then, with a cheese grater, grate both carrots. Reserve.
- In the pot where you will make the Gajrela, place the almonds, cashews, and pistachios. Turn on the stove over medium heat, and toast all the nuts, stirring occasionally.
- When the nuts are fully browned, add the grated carrot, and then the milk. Cook for about twenty minutes while stirring to prevent the mixture from sticking to the bottom.
- Add the cardamom seeds, crushed without the zest, and the ghee. You will know that the Gajrela is ready when you can see the metallic bottom when you pass the spoon through the bottom of the pot. Turn off the stove and let it rest.
- Serve it inindividual portions with some nuts on top.