As usual, I was thinking of making a sugar-free yet a healthy dessert for Holi. Every time I prepare a sugar-free dessert, I am encouraged by my DH and dad. My dad being diabetic particulary loves chocolates and he always tries to sneak few chocolates in his pocket like a naughty kid. So, I try to find new ways to make his desserts sugar free. Lately, he has been buying a lot of peanut chikkis and my mum told me about it. So, I made nuts burfi without sugar but fig and dates added for sweetness for my dad.
These burfis are made of Dates, Figs, Cashew nuts, walnuts, Almonds, pistachios and flax seeds bound together by just a tablespoon of ghee. It has the goodness of all the nuts and is rich in iron. Since a mixture of nuts is added to this burfi, the health benefits are numerous. Even though this dessert does not have added sugar, I have added just enough ghee to bind it all together. You can skip the ghee part and add Khoya instead, though that will change the taste altogether and will have lower shelf life. Apart from the mixed nuts, you can also add grated dry coconut, sesame seeds and poppy seeds.
My DH and I have a special liking for dates and my first option when it comes to dessert is a dish made of dates. It has been years since I started to curb my sweet tooth with dates as snack. I also try to make it a little more interesting by adding it to bread or cake. You can check these totally-sugar-free recipes which have helped me overcome my all time sugar cravings. This practice of replacing sugar to dates has helped me with weight loss and better health to a huge extent. Anyway, here are few sugar free recipes to check if you would like:
Dates and Nuts Loaf
Dates and Semolina Halwa
|Nutritional Information (Approx) (per serving)|
|Dry figs||250 grams|
|Cashew nuts||50 grams|
|Flax seeds||100 grams|
|Cardamom powder||1/2 teaspoon|
|Grated nutmeg||1/2 teaspoon|
|Ghee/Clarified butter||1 tablespoon divided|
Grease a plate and keep it aside. Heat a kadai and dry roast almonds till they feel crisp, for about 5-6 minutes. Let it aside to cool.
Once the almonds are cooled completely, ground them to a coarse powder. Meanwhile, heat a pan and dry roast flax seeds under low flame. You will have to cover the pan since the flax seeds starts to pop once the heat turns up.
Once the flax seeds starts to give out it's aroma, remove from flame and let it cool.
Meanwhile, Dry roast all the remaining nuts together till they turn crisp and let them aside to cool completely.
Grind the flax seeds into fine powder. Now, you can either chop the nuts to your desired size or you can pulse them all together into tiny uneven pieces. I have done the latter. Mix Almond powder, flax seeds powder and remaining nuts.
Chop the figs and dates. Heat a kadai, fry the dates with half a tablespoon of ghee till the dates look a little puffed. Transfer the dates to a plate and set it aside to cool.
Fry chopped figs with half tablespoon ghee till they look a little puffed up. Let them cool completely. Now, grind together dates and figs WITHOUT water. The mixture should be coarse and it is alright if few dates are whole. Heat the same used kadai, add ground paste, nutmeg and cardamom powder and mix well.
Cook the dates mixture for a minute till the mixture gets a little warm. Add dry ingredients to the dates and fig mixture and mix well. Remove from flame.
Smear some ghee or oil to you hands and knead the mixture into a dough when the mixture is still warm. Place the dough in the greased plate and press them with your palm. Cut and let the mixture cool in refrigerator for at least an hour. Cut into the mixture again before removing the burfis from the plate. Serve and enjoy!
* You can play with the quantity of nuts added but it works better if the quantity of fig and dates are not reduced.
* I have pulsed the nuts in my blender twice to make them into coarse pieces and powder. You can chop the nuts if you want.