Kasi Halwa is to South India what Lauki Halwa | Dudhi Halwa is to North India. This super simple halwa is made with Ash Gourd or Winter Melon (known as Budida Gummadikaya in Telugu or Poosanikai in Tamil, and Petha in Hindi).

Kasi Halwa | Ash Gourd Halwa
Kasi Halwa | Ash Gourd Halwa

I have been meaning to make Kasi Halwa for the longest time but have been putting it off for one reason or the other. This week, when my father got 1 Kg of Ash Gourd this week, I got the perfect chance.

While Dudhi Halwa or Lauki Halwa is very popular in the West and North of India, in South India it is Kasi Halwa that rules the roost. It is easy to make and does not need a lot of time.

Many a time, you will see that Kasi Halwa is bright orange in colour because food colour added to it. I do not like to use food colour and so have used saffron.

Also try my recipes for Gajar Halwa, Apple Cinnamon Sheera, Pineapple Kesari, Rava Kesari, and Banana Sheera (Sapata).

Recipe for Kasi Halwa | Pethe ka Halwa | Kohlyacha Halwa

Kasi Halwa | Poosanikai Halwa | Pethe ka Halwa

Kasi Halwa | Budida Gummadikaya or Poosinakai Halwa | Pethe ka Halwa

Kasi Halwa is South India’s equivalent to the North Indian Lauki Halwa (or Dudhi Halwa as it is called in Maharashtra). Made with Ash Gourd, this halwa is very easy to make and delicious while being light on the stomach.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Course Dessert, Sweets
Cuisine Andhra Pradesh, Indian, Karnataka, South Indian, Tamil Nadu
Servings 4 People

Equipment

  • Heavy Bottomed Vessel

Ingredients
  

  • 2 Cup Grated Ash Gourd, Poosanikai, Budida Gummidikaya (~600 gms) See Notes.
  • 1 Cup Sugar
  • 10-15 Strands Saffron
  • 12 Cashews, Split in Halves
  • 2 tsp Ghee

Instructions
 

  • Soak in the saffron strands in 2 tbsp warm water.
  • In a heavy bottomed vessel, over medium heat, melt the ghee.
  • Now add the cashews and stir-fry till the pieces just start to change colour.
  • Add the grated ash gourd along with any liquid that oozes out of it when it is grated.
  • Over medium heat, stir-fry till the ash gourd softens and the liquid is absorbed.
  • Add the soaked saffron and sugar, and mix well.
  • Over medium heat, let the mix cook till the ash gourd absorbs all the water from the sugar.
  • Turn off the heat and let the Kasi Halwa rest for a few minutes.
  • Serve the Kasi Halwa warm or at room temperature.

Notes

1 kg of Ash Gourd should yield about 2 packed cups or 600 gms of grated ash gourd. The rest of the weight is accounted for by the peel, seeds and the spongy inner part that you will discard.    
Keyword Budida Gummadikaya Halwa, Kasi Halwa, Pethe ka Halwa, Poosanikai Halwa
Pethe ka Halwa | Ash Gourd Halwa | Safed Bhopylacha Halwa
Pethe ka Halwa | Ash Gourd Halwa | Kohlyacha Halwa

How to Make Kasi Halwa | Gummidikaya Halwa | Poosanikai Halwa | Pethe ka Halwa | Kohlyacha Halwa

  1. Getting the Saffron Ready
    1. Soak in the saffron strands in 2 tbsp warm water. This helps release the aroma, flavour and colour of the saffron. Ensure that the water is just lukewarm and not hot as that can kill the flavour of saffron.
        
  2. Making the Kasi Halwa
    1. In a heavy bottomed vessel, over medium heat, melt the ghee.
    2. Now add the cashews and stir-fry till the pieces just start to change colour.
  3. Next add the grated ash gourd along with any liquid that oozes out of it and mix well. Ash gourd or winter melon has a very high water content and the water will be released as you are grating the vegetable. Preserve this water as well and use it to cook the ash gourd.
  4. Over medium heat, stir-fry till the ash gourd softens and the liquid is absorbed.
  5. Add the soaked saffron and sugar, and mix well.
  6. Over medium heat, let the mix cook till the ash gourd absorbs all the water from the sugar. Be careful after adding the sugar. Cook just till the water released by the addition of sugar is absorbed and the halwa just slides off the spoon. If you overcook the halwa or then cook on a high flame, the sugar will crystalize.
  7. Turn off the heat.
  8. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Budida Gummadikaya Halwa
Kasi Halwa | Budida Gummadikaya Halwa

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