Diwali, the ‘Festival of Lights’, is one time of the year when people tend to forget their dietary restrictions and resolutions, and go about devouring sweet delicacies without a pang of guilt. Even though many are well aware of the ‘morning-after’ effects these unrestrained food ‘tastings’ have on their health, they nevertheless continue to enjoy them with the consoling thought, ‘Diwali comes but once a year’.

However, rather than head to the nearest confectionary store and order oodles of sweets, why not prepare them fresh at home.By making them at home, you can be assured of the quality of ingredients used and also control the sweetness and fat content of the sweet delights.

Below we have put together a handful of Diwali specialties that are ‘relatively healthier’ and which you can prepare at home without too much effort or time.

Badam Halwa

Badam Halwa is a sweet Indian pudding made with ground almonds, milk, sugar and flavored with saffron and cardamom. Traditionally badam (almond) halwa is made with whole almonds that are first soaked and then peeled and ground to a paste to form the base of the halwa. Although this original process delivers a superb taste, it also involves slow tedious stirring and extreme care. Replacing the ground almonds with readily available almond flour speeds up the entire halwa making process without sacrificing much of the taste of the original.


  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 1 cup + 2 tbsp milk
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 3 tsp ghee (clarified butter)
  • Few strands of saffron
  • 2 cardamom pods, crushed


  • Soak the saffron in two tablespoons of warm milk
  • Heat one teaspoon of ghee in a pan.
  • Once the ghee melts, reduce the heat to low and add the almond flour and saute for a minute, making sure to coat the flour with the ghee
  • Add milk and sugar at room temperature to the flour and ghee mixture
  • Mix well and cook for a few minutes till the halwa starts to thicken
  • Stir often to avoid burning the bottom of the mixture
  • Add the saffron milk and rest of the ghee and cook till the halwa comes together and no longer sticks to the pan
  • Finally add some crushed cardamom powder and turn off the stove
  • Serve the badam halwa warm.

Besan Ladoo

A popular Indian sweet dish made from besan (gram flour), ghee, sugar, and sometimes nuts, and flavored with cardamom, besan ladoos are often prepared for festive occasions, or as a sweet snack.

  • Ingredients:
  • 1 cup besan flour (gram flour)
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • 6 tbsp ghee (melted)
  • 4 tbsp assorted chopped nuts (optional)
  • ½ tsp cardamom powder
  • 1 small pinch salt


  • Heat a heavy bottom non-stick fry pan on medium heat. Add ghee and let it melt Add the gram flour and salt, and mix until the flour absorbs the ghee
  • Keep stirring continuously till the mixture darkens to a medium golden color and the aroma of roasted besan arises
  • Transfer besan to a mixing bowl to prevent over-roasting. Add chopped nuts (optional), and let it cool for 20-30 minutes
  • When the mix is cool to the touch, add powdered sugar and mix well
  • Take about a tablespoon of the mix in your palm and shape it like a ball
  • Press the finely chopped or sliced nuts onto the ladoo surface and serve.


A sweet Indian fudge made with milk and often flavored with cardamom, Kalakand is a delicious sweet to make for special occasions such as Diwali.


  • 6 cups whole milk
  • 2 tbsp + 1 tsp lemon juice
  • ¾ can condensed milk
  • 1 tsp rose water
  • 3/4 tsp cardamom powder
  • Chopped pistachios to garnish


  • Add the whole milk to a heavy-bottomed pan and place over medium-high heat
  • Stir often and once the milk comes to a boil, turn off the heat.
  • Add the lemon juice, 1 tablespoon at a time stirring gently after each addition
  • Add and stir until the milk curdles completely and whey separates
  • Line a strainer with muslin cloth and pour the curdled milk over it
  • Wash the filtered ‘chhena’ (basic cheese) under a tap to get rid of the lemony flavor
  • Bring the ends of the muslin cloth together and tie them in the center
  • Squeeze out nearly all the water from the chhena
  • Place the chhena in a pan and add the condensed milk and mix well
  • Cook the mixture over low heat for 10 to 12 minutes, stirring often, until the mixture thickens and begins to leave the sides of the pan
  • Add the rose water and cardamom powder, and mix well
  • Remove from heat and transfer mixture to a greased pan
  • Smooth out the mixture using a spatula, and sprinkle chopped nuts on top
  • Let it set for 2 to 3 hours at room temperature.
  • Once set, cut kalakand into pieces
  • Keep refrigerated, if not serving immediately

Mysore Pak

An Indian sweet that is said to have originated in the South-Indian city of Mysore, the buttery and dense Mysore Pak is prepared with generous amounts of ghee, sugar, gram flour, and often cardamom


  • ¾ cup gram flour
  • 4 cups pure ghee
  • 2 ½ cups desi ghee


  • Sift the gram flour twice
  • Heat the ghee in a pan and keep it hot over very low heat
  • Cook the sugar with two and half cups of water over medium heat, stirring continuously till it dissolves
  • Increase heat and bring the syrup to a boil
  • Cook without stirring for about five minutes or till it reaches a single-thread consistency
  • Add half a cup of hot ghee to the syrup and stir
  • Add gram flour gradually, stirring all the while to prevent lumps from forming
  • Stir continuously till the mixture starts bubbling
  • Pour in the remaining hot ghee, half a cup at a time
  • Every time you add the ghee the mixture should sizzle and froth
  • Continue this process till all the ghee is consumed and there is a pleasant sweet roasted aroma
  • Pour the mixture into a greased tray
  • Cool for a while and then cut into squares
  • Separate the squares when completely cooled and store in an airtight container to retain its freshness and crispness.

Gulab Jamun


  • 1 ½ cups khoya (dried whole milk)
  • ¼ cup chenna (cheese curd)
  • ¼ teaspoon soda bicarbonate
  • 3 tablespoons refined flour (maida)
  • ¼ teaspoon green cardamom powder
  • 2 cups sugar
  • Ghee to deep fry


  • Grate khoya and mash chenna and set aside
  • Mix the two along with soda bicarbonate, refined flour, green cardamom powder and a
  • little water to make a soft dough
  • Divide into sixteen equal portions and shape into balls
  • Prepare a sugar syrup with sugar and two cups of water
  • Clear the syrup by removing the scum, if any
  • Heat ghee/oil in a kadai.
  • Add the balls and deep fry on low heat till it turns a golden color
  • Drain and soak in the sugar syrup for at least fifteen to twenty minutes before serving.



  • 1 ½ cups refined flour
  • Two cups sugar
  • ¼ tsp orange color
  • Two cups sugar
  • One tbsp milk
  • ½ tsp green cardamom powder


  • Place the refined flour in a bowl, add one and a half cups of water and bring them together to form a light smooth batter
  • Cover the bowl and keep in a warm place to ferment for twenty hours
  • Mix the batter again with your hands for fifteen minutes
  • Add the food color and two tablespoons of refined flour
  • Mix again for ten minutes
  • Cook the sugar with two cups of water in a deep non-stick pan on high heat, stirring continuously, till the sugar dissolves
  • Add the milk and remove the scum that forms on top
  • Add the cardamom powder and cook, stirring, till the syrup attains a one-string consistency
  • Let the syrup cool, but ensure that it remains lukewarm
  • Heat the ghee in a non-stick frying pan on medium heat
  • Pour some of the batter into a squeeze bottle
  • Hold the bottle over the hot ghee and gently squeeze the batter into the ghee in spiral shapes
  • Start from the outside and work inwards for better results
  • Cook, gently turning the jalebi over occasionally, till golden and crisp
  • Drain and soak in the sugar syrup for two to three minutes
  • Drain and serve hot.

Read Today's News TODAY... on our Telegram Channel click here to join and receive all the latest updates t.me/thetimeskuwait