Monday, June 30, 2008

Bottlegourd Barfi or Gardudde Khadi

Last week I got a bottlegourd and I thought of trying this burfi instead of the regular halwa. This sweet has the taste of the bottlegourd and also a nutty flavor of milk. This is my grandmom's recipe. She specialized in making sweets and used to make lot of sweets and fried savories during festivals and birthday's. The whole house would smell divine with the aroma of ghee, cardamom and other foodstuff. She also specialized in making rava burfi, coconut barfi, rava ladoo, cashew nut barfi, mysore pak, shrikhand, sanjeera, phenori or chiroti (fried crisp flour circles rolled in sugar), til ladoo and plantain halwa and I will post these recipes subsequently.

around 3 cups grated bottlegourd (The grated bottle gourd should not be exposed to air for along time as it gets oxidized and turns brown. So grate the bottle gourd only when you are ready to add into the pan.)
1 1/2 cup whole milk or 1 cup condensed milk
3 cups sugar
6 tablespoons ghee
1 teaspoon powdered cardamom

Add 4 tablespoon ghee in a wide bottomed pan and add milk. If you are using whole milk, get the milk to a boil and leave it for around 10 minutes until the milk reduces to 1 cup. If you are using condensed milk, there is no need to boil it. Add the grated bottle gourd and mix well.
This dish should be cooked throughout on a very low flame with constant stirring or else it could be burnt. Cook uncovered till the bottle gourd is soft. Add 2 (not 3) cups of sugar and mix well. Now comes the tricky part. Once the burfi is semisolid, you need to periodically check it. Put around 1/4 teaspoon of this mixture on a plate and check if it hardens like burfi. If it doesn't then you need to add around 3 tablespoon more sugar and mix well and check again. Once done, spread it on a plate greased with the remaining ghee.

Cut immediately into squares with a greased knife or cutter as if it cools down, it is hard to cut it.

Preparation time: 2 hours
Servings: makes around 30 burfis