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Sunday, April 13, 2014

Kesari Seviyan/Vermicelli Halwa with Pineapple and Nuts

In English, the Italian loanword "Vermicelli" is used to indicate different sorts of long pasta shapes from different parts of the world but mostly from South or East Asia. The dish in the original language are variously known as seviyan in Urdu and Hindi, shemai in Bengali, sev in Gujrati shavige in Kannada sevalu or semiya in Telagu and semiya in Tamil and Malayalam. The noodles are used in a number of dishes including a variation of Kheer, a sweet dessert similar to rice pudding,  Vermicelli are also used in many parts of India to make a popular dish called sweet Kesari Sevia Halwa and also savory Upma  To prepare it, dry oil-roasted vermicelli are boiled with a choice of vegetables with spices.

This is the recipe is for Halwa, will post the Sevia/Kheer pudding recipe separately some other time.

This recipe yields 8 generous servings.
* Sevia/Vermicelli – 1 pack (16 oz)
* Ghee/Clarified Butter – 1/2 cup
* Sugar – 1.5 cup
* Water –2.5 cups
* Saffron – few strands
* Cardamom Powder – 1 tsp
* Chopped Pistachios  2 tbsp
* Broken Cashews halves- 1-2 tbsp

* Sliced Almonds – 2 tbsp
* 1 can of crushed pineapple with some of its juice

* Roast nuts in a pan and keep them aside.
* Heat a pan on medium heat and pour in the Ghee.
* Add in the Sevia/Vermicille
* Cook with stirring constantly till it releases an aroma and has a  light-golden color.
* Boil water in the microwave

* Add water and sugar and mix in well in to Seviyan.
* Lower the heat
* Add crushed pineapple
* Add in the Saffron and cover the pan and let it cook for few min
* Keep stirring in between and cook until ghee start to come out and vermicelli start receding the pan
* Lastly, add in the Cardamom Powder, mix well, add roasted nuts, and allow it to stand for a couple of minutes.
* Serve hot!

* Sometimes my mom used to add Jaggery instead of sugar which comes out very good too. * You may add half Jaggery and half sugar.
* You may also add golden raisin to this as well, I didn't this time.
* Seviyan pack can be bought from local Indian grocers.  They come in long strands, if you desire you may break them up, but I like to cook them as they come.

Enjoy :)

Description of Vermicelli source:
Recipe adapted by Surekha from her mom's recipe.
Photographs by Surekha

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