There’s a few fruit and veggie deals on at Tesco these few days. Like when you buy a 2kg bag of potatoes, you get a broccoli plus 3 swedes free! This was a bit weird for a veggie deal (I thought)! But I got them anyway, because it was still a good deal. So, I now had 3 swedes at home to cook throughout the week. I’ve had swedes a few times before but I’ve only had them in soups. So, I googled for swede recipes to see if there were anything more creative that I could do with them. I ended up finding more soup recipes and some roasts. Hmmm!
Then I got the idea of making a sort of swede burfi or halva when I found this Mango Coconut Burfi recipe from the RedChillies Blog (there are some quite nice recipes on there, by the way, although they are not all vegan. But most can be easily veganised). Swede has a pretty bland taste and slightly on the sweet side. So, I thought why not make a sweet recipe out of it?!
When I actually cooked this, I put slightly too much sugar (I’ve reduced it in the recipe), but it was nice nevertheless. I just have to eat it in smaller portions! I also decided I would not have any oil or margarine in this, so I replaced this with a little custard powder to help it to set.
I used one swede for this recipe and it yielded 8 squares approximately 1.5 cubic inches or 4 cubic cm. The texture is more gooey than regular halva which is why I did not think they could be called swede halva. I quite liked them though. I refrigerated them and found they taste better this way.
Ingredients (8 squares – 1.5 cubic inches or 4 cubic cm)
1 swede, peeled and grated
3 tablespoons demerara sugar
1 cup soy milk (use coconut milk if you want a richer texture)
3-4 cardamon pods (whole or sliced open) or ½ teaspoon cardomon powder
3 tablespoons desiccated coconut
½ teaspoon custard powder (or cornstarch)
- Place the grated swede with the sugar in a saucepan. Cook over low heat and covered for 30 – 40 minutes, or until swede is soft and easy to mash. Stir occasionally and mash just a little bit.
- Add in soymilk and cardamon pods. Let simmer for a few minutes. Then let reduce until thick. Add 2 tablespoons desiccated coconut.
- Add custard powder and stir vigorously so as to avoid lumps from forming.
- This will thicken quite quickly.
- Remove from heat and pour in a rectangular container to set. (you can remove the cardomon pods if you want before doing this).
- Sprinkle with the rest of the desiccated coconut. Then, even it on the top with a spoon so that it is about 3 – 4 cm or 1 – 1.5 inches thick (or desired thickness).
- You can place it in the refrigerator for 2 hours, then cut into squares.
You can add raisins, nuts and/or dates.
If you don’t like cardomon, vanilla essence might be nice too.