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April 05, 2011

Nikos' Almost Famous Halvas Recipe

Nikos truly has a knack for making delicacies and desserts. This is my favorite dessert recipe of all time, Halvas, which is a Greek specialty. Halvas taste best when you are eating it in Greece, usually due to the local ingredients used(honey, olive oil, nuts). Nikos has made this version lighter than the traditional version, yet it still tastes just like the original. I think it tastes particularly good because of the chef ;)

2 cups of semolina
1/2 cup sunflower oil
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped coarsely
1/4 cup raisins

4 cups water
2 cups honey (or sugar, or sugar with honey)
3 small pieces cinnamon stick
2-inch piece of orange peel
4 whole cloves
Ground cinnamon and chopped walnuts for dusting

1. To a medium saucepan, add the water, honey, cinnamon sticks, cloves, and orange peel. Boil for 5 minutes then lower the heat and simmer gently.

2. Remove the cinnamon, clove and orange peel before pouring.

3. In another larger saucepan, over medium high heat, add the oil and heat until shimmering. Add the semolina and cook, stirring frequently to prevent sticking. Cook the semolina in the oil until the grains begin to toast and turn a deep golden color.
4. Remove the pot from the heat and carefully add the hot syrup to the semolina mixture. (The semolina is going to sizzle so be careful not to burn yourself. SAFETY TIP!!)
5. Stir in the walnuts and raisins and continue to cook until the semolina absorbs all the liquid. Cover the pot tightly and set aside to cool for 10-15 minutes.
6. Spoon the mixture into a pudding mold or into individual cups. Allow the pudding to cool to room temperature before serving.
7. To serve, sprinkle with cinnamon and some more chopped nuts (if desired some honey/agave as well).

1 comment:

  1. It looks so yummy. Thanks for sharing.I want to try a lot of your recipes!!! I love your blog.