Semolina Halva

(recipe, Madhur Jaffrey)


This very light, fluffy, moist halva may be eaten as a snack or at the end of a meal.


  1. 1 pt. water
  2. 5 Tbsp. vegetable oil or ghee
  3. 1 oz. almonds, blanched and slivered
  4. 11 oz. semolina, fine-grained
  5. 5½ oz. sugar
  6. 2 to 3 Tbsp. golden raisins
  7. ¼ tsp. cardamom seeds, finely crushed


  1. Boil the water in a saucepan. Once it comes to a rolling boil, turn the heat down to very low and let the pan sit on the back of the stove.
  2. Put the oil or ghee in a large, preferably nonstick, frying pan and set it over medium heat. When hot, put in the almonds. Stir and fry them until they turn golden. Take them out with a slotted spoon and leave them to drain on paper towels.
  3. Put the semolina into the same oil. Turn the heat to medium low. Stir and sauté the semolina for 8 to 10 minutes or until it turns a warm, golden color. Do not let it brown.
  4. Add the sugar and stir it in.
  5. Very slowly, begin to pour the boiling water into the pan. Keep stirring as you do so. Take a good 2 minutes to do this. When all the water has been added, turn the heat to low. Stir and cook the halva for 5 minutes.
  6. Add the golden raisins, almonds, and crushed cardamom seeds. Stir and cook for another 5 minutes.
  7. Scrape out into a small casserole dish or bowl. Serve hot, warm, or at room temperature.