Friday, October 10, 2008

Low Fat Pineapple Kesari (Indian sweet with semolina)

First let me start with a brief introduction,Kesari is a very popular sweet from Southern India. It is also a cousin to Sheera which is similar but not the same as kesari and is made in the western region of India. More about Sheera in another post.Coming back to Kesari this is made with copious amounts of sugar and clarified butter and is invariably served at Indian weddings and also made at home for special occasions.

Normally I do not like the traditional form of kesari since it tends to be cloyingly sweet and hence avoid making this sweet if possible. Last week when an occasion to make this arose it got me wondering if I would be able to make Kesari both mildly sweet and low calorie too. I decided to give it a try and used unsweetened crushed pineapple to add some sweet to it naturally and used some agave nectar and sugar to sweeten it further.

This kesari turned out exactly the way I wanted it to taste, mildly sweet with the pineapple adding just a little something extra,which made it quite interesting. This is the first time I tried using agave nectar in an Indian sweet and I am happy to report it works just as well as it does in cookies and cakes,there was no discernible taste from the agave nectar and it does not interfere with the flavor of this recipe.


Click here for a printable view of this recipe

Ingredients and Method to make Pineapple Kesari
2/3 cup cream of wheat (rava) (semolina)
5 tsp clarified butter (ghee)
8-10 cashew nuts (plain and unsalted)
2 tbsp raisins
1 3/4 cups water
2/3 cup crushed pineapple (with juice)(no sugar added) (I used canned)
4-5 strands saffron
4 tbsp sugar
4 tbsp agave nectar
1/4 tsp cardamom powder

In a large heavy bottomed container roast cream of wheat in 2 tsp of clarified butter on medium high until it turns slightly golden brown.Take care to keep stirring and do not let this cream of wheat burn.Remove the cream of wheat when done and keep aside in a separate bowl/plate.

In the same container add another tsp of clarified butter and roast the cashew and when the cashews start turning golden add the raisins and saute quickly for a few seconds.Remove from heat and keep aside in a separate bowl/plate

In the same container heat the water and allow it to boil. When it starts boiling add sugar,agave nectar,saffron strands and crushed pineapple and let it boil for another minute.

After the sugar has melted add the roasted cream of wheat and mix well seeing that no lumps are formed.

Keep a lid handy as sometimes the mixture could start splattering at this point. Keep stirring until the cream of wheat absorbs all the water and becomes thick.

Add the balance of clarified butter and the roasted cashews and raisins. Also add the cardamom powder at this time,mix well and serve hot.

Serves about 2-3

Notes:

Saffron food color can be added to enhance the look of this dish,I normally avoid adding any food color so I used just a few strands of saffron

In case you want it much sweeter double the quantity of sugar and agave nectar.

Do remember that agave nectar is much sweeter than sugar so in case you use just agave nectar keep that in mind and adjust it accordingly.

Related Recipes
Sweet Sesame Rice

27 comments :

Ricki said...

Hi Usha,
Thanks so much for your comment on my blog--it is much appreciated! And I see that you post lots of recipes that feature the types of foods I love to eat (this one included)! I look forward to reading more and trying out some of your recipes. :)

Laavanya said...

I love all things pineapple and infact tried this kesari from another blog and we loved it. Nice to see your healthier version,.

Vidhya said...

Love it Usha, never tried kesari with pineapple. will try it soon

anudivya said...

What a neat idea to sweeten with pineapple and agave... I normally make it in the microwave to save time... either way kesari rocks.

Mahimaa's kitchen said...

kesari and low fat? unbelievable! i have never tried kesari without compromising on sugar and ghee :) so i make it very rarely.. i love pineapple in anything. good one USha.. :)

Curry Leaf said...

Agave Nectar -truly lowfat kesari,delicious

Uma said...

ooh, that looks delicious.

sowmya said...

looks yummy..love it.

Cham said...

Pineapple kesari is very tasty, I always cut the sugar in all sweets , but never added nectar !

Jaishree said...

Looks yum usha:)

srikars kitchen said...

Really excellant... nice entry... sounds deliicous...

Shreya said...

looks grt. but i am allergic to pineapple:-(

Alexa said...

I love how resourceful you are! I don't like overly sweet desserts either. It sounds like this one is perfect.

Sukanya said...

Kesari and that too low fat...healthy and yummy.

Daily Meals said...

Pine apple kesari looks delicious...

Suma Rajesh said...

nice combo fruit...loved it..

miss v said...

i love pineapple!

Sukanya Ramkumar said...

This sounds to cool. Happy to see a healthy sweet. Looks so good. YUM!

Divya Vikram said...

Great idea to use the sweetness of pineapples!

Happy cook said...

I woould love to taste this

Curry Leaf said...

Kindly accept a sweet cool award at http://tastycurryleaf.blogspot.com/2008/10/vegetarian-beet-borscht.html

Vidhya said...

Surprise waiting for you in my blog. Check out Usha

Priti said...

Looks nice ..and low fat..thts gud :)...adding pineapple to kesari is nice idea too...

DEESHA said...

thatz a lovely sweet .. that too low fat, a very healthy option

raaji said...

pineapple is sth i love as a topping...whatever dish it is its a must for me.....

Ramya Vijaykumar said...

Cant think of sweets and low fat your Kesari is a wonderful one....

Vidya Vaidyanathan said...

hey
thanks for the wonderful recipe. Would be able to tell me where I can buy agave nectar in India.

thanks
Vidya

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