It was one of the most important day of my life as we drove through wide but still crowded roads due to evening traffic, long after sun down to Kashmiri Gate,to the university campus in Old Delhi to figure out if I made it to that year's list of DCE(Delhi College of Engineering0. I remember me and mom sat and waited in the car while dad walked out to check the noticeboard.Those fifteen minutes,that day, might have been the longest of my life as I sat and observed the varied expressions of cheer and dismay on the faces of others coming out of the red-painted door and walking towards the crowded parking lot. As many parents passed our car, clear among the noisy chaos of honks and shouting kin, I could hear the conversations of celebrations, as also the consoling whispers of 'there are few more results left'. Every time those sounds touched my ears, my heart rejoiced for half a second and next moment, the random thoughts weaved an abyss against hope. I might have blinked my eyes lesser than usual, my throat felt dry and itchy but my glances just waited for dad to emerge out of that red-painted door. I could hear mom's cell phone ringing constantly, every other relative & rest of the family calling in to check if I 'got through'. She pretended to be normal, but I could segregate the egdy tones of anxiety when she uttered 'pata nahi' (don't know).
The engineering entrance exam system in India gets more tough each year than the actual exam itself mainly due to the exponential increase in number of takers. Colleges in big metropolitan cities are more sought after and it definitely boils down to minute differences in performance to rank you higher or not. I had been preparing for this exam for almost a year and as expected I was nervous on the result day. Badly.
It was 7:43 pm. Dad emerged out of the door with a flat face.My heart skipped a beat and I started sweating like a pig. I could feel my ear lobes turning red and my throat choking. We could not keep inside the car anymore and I forced myself and ran to him. Mom rushed after. I looked at him with deer eyes.He still kept a straight face. I don't remember but for the first time in last fifteen minutes I would have opened my palms to clutch his sleeve. He looked at us and with the most lovely smile spreading across his face that I might have witnessed ever, he said 'ho gaya, mithai khilao' (You got in, get the sweets!). Tears rolled down my eyes. Music to my ears. The world at my feet. I was through!
Mithai or sweets form an integral part of indian culture.Each occasion of life is celebrated with them.The streets and neighborhood of the country are dotted with sweet shops and if you find ever yourself stuck in a desert, you would be less than a mile away from one. 'Peda' is one of the popular sweets from the 'Uttar Pradesh',and these are essentially fudgy, thick, semi soft, sweet chunks made with mava (milk solids)sugar andÂ ghee. However, these fudgy cashew almond peda, I made are dairy free as well as need very few ingredients for preparation.My daughter loves any mithai made with cashews, so these were mainly made for her though we enjoyed them as well. The slight hints from the orange paired very well withÂ the nuts even though the aroma of sweet green cardamom is more prominent. These could get addictive. These gluten-free, vegan balls can be an excellent after school snack. Make some and enjoy!
Glutenfree, Dairy Free & Vegan sweet fudge made with cashew and almond meal.
Ingredients (Makes 25 )
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup water
- 1.5 cup cashew nut meal (or powdered raw cashews)
- 1 cup almond meal (or powdered raw almonds)
- ½ teaspoon fresh orange zest
- 6 green cardamom pods, seeds crushed
- ½ cup powdered sugar to roll
In a wide, heavy bottomed pan (I use my 12 inch skillet) or a kadhai, mix up the sugar and water. Set the pan on low flame and let the sugar dissolve. Stir (I use my rubber spatula) the solution once or twice while the sugar dissolves so that the sugar does not stick to bottom of the pan.
Once the sugar has completely dissolved, add the cashew and almond meal to the pan. Mix everything and brace yourself for some hard work. Keep on stirring and stirring as the mix cooks on low flame. The process will be slow in the beginning and you will feel that it will take forever but do not worry. Keep on stirring, scraping the mixture on low flame, do not let the mixture stick to the sides of the skillet.
After about 20-22 minutes, you will see that the mixture starts thickening and coming together. We will shortly be getting there, once the mixture is thick, do not bother much about scraping the sides as they will be really dry. Around 24 minutes, the mixture will start resembling a soft, sticky dough and will clump up around the spatula. If you try to bring the mixture together in one place on the skillet, it will try to slowly spread (similar to how a glug of cold honey spreads on a surface). Mix in the orange zest and crushed cardamom. Put off the stove.
Immediately transfer to the greased surface and leave to cool a bit until its safe to handle. Once the dough has cooled slightly, very gently knead the dough for 2-3 minutes. Remember that the dough needs to be warm when you knead so just wait till its safe to touch, do not let it cool down completely, else it will not knead and remain grainy.Do not press very hard as you knead else the nuts will start oozing their oil. You can grease you hands or the dough with ghee in between if it starts feeling sticky.
While the kneaded dough is still warm, pinch small portions of it and roll into a smooth ball. Roll the balls in powdered sugar.
Once cooled, store the peda in air tight container for up to a week.
Thank you for stopping by!
- The time of cooking noted in this recipe will vary if you are using any other kind of sugar than granulated, since the water content of different varieties of sugar is different.
- You can use any kind of flavorings like saffron or rose instead of orange zest & cardamom.
yumm peda is my favorite! gotta try this version now- might try it with key limes instead of orange!
Key limes sound so yum! Hope you like them. Thank you
WHat a beautiful story !!! Lovely
Would wheat meal do also ? In recent recipes you use different kind of meals (meals not easy to find here in Holland). Would wheat meal be a good replacement or is it important to use the specific meals you mention ?
Cashew or almond meal is nothing but blanched nuts, dried and powdered. You can easily make the meal at home with raw almond or cashews. I sometimes do that too. In USA, we get these easily at stores and they are just convenient.
Also, I don't think wheat meal will work here. These little fudge ride on the taste of the nuts so will not taste great without.
Amanda | What's Cooking
What a beautiful story. You're an excellent story teller and it's amazing how these sweets will forever be tied to that moment. Your photos are gorgeous and the presentation of the sweets is just perfect. I totally intend on making this. Thank you for sharing. xo
Thank you sweet lady!
a good one.. Definately gonna try this when I've got extra time. thanks btwðŸ˜‰
Yumm! This is my kind of treat. ðŸ’› congratulations btw!
Lovely way of talking about a recipe.
So tempted to make these now,just wish I had a cool story to go with them! Love this
Love the post!
I like your post and i like all that, but how can I really taste all that ?... ha ha ..
oh wow! im rumbling already 😛
Her Excellency Idiot
cravings !! get , set , GO !!
Lovely Writing . cheeeers (*^*)
Stumbled upon your website from Freshly Pressed. Beautifully laid out and very interesting content! Also loved the way you made the Indian dishes easier for people to understand globally... Keep going 🙂
Such a beautiful story.!!
Beautiful story, I also loved the printable recipe, I already stuck it on my refrigerator will be making on Sunday for my family. Hopefully they will turn out right. Lol, I enjoyed reading your post.
Congratulation for getting DC.... and a really descriptive blog, i thought i myself was there in the car.
Oh my god this is so beautifully written with such lovely photos!!
Lovely post. We can relate to this experience of yours - waiting for the result as well as sharing of mithai. Will definitely try this recipe.
Such a touching story! Congratulations on getting into the engineering program! I'll have to try to make those sweets and let you know how it goes!
drooling! this looks delicious
Beautiful story! Peda looks so scrumptious! I love cardamom and orange combination!Especially orange blossom water!
I really got to try these!
Could a hazelnut meal work instead of cashew meal?
Yes, it will work. Any but meal will work in this recipe. Thank you
Lovely post. The printable recipe is great. And my hubby brought me enough cardamon pods from India to make vegan sweets until Kingdom come...
Are you an Indian
If you don't mind.
From where are you?
Your photos are extraordinary in this post. Made my mouth water haha. Keep it up!
Great story - congratulations!
The Natural Taste
This sounds and looks sooo incredible good!
These sounds exotic and delicious!
I really like this post ðŸ‘ðŸ»ðŸ‘ðŸ»ðŸ‘ðŸ»ðŸ‘ðŸ»
Great story and pictures.... Beautiful and messy all at the same time 🙂
Such an impressive recipe! Love it!
The wandering gastronomist
Sounds like gorgeous glamour combinations, something nice and light to have between meals.
Also, your photography is stunning!
The wandering gastronomist
Wow sounds great i will try that as a petti four at some point
Great story as well
Amazingly beautiful story and post. Love!
Just. Yes. <3 story
Oh cool! Love any flavour of fudge.
Beautiful images. Inspires me to make them thanks!
Looks great! Yum, I am also just starting gluten free cooking.
This sounds delicious! Great story 🙂
Love it completely, good pictures
Nice story! 🙂 That sweet is similar to "polvoron" in the Philippines. 🙂
Gorgeous images! ðŸ‘ŒðŸ¼
Oooh, this looks just incredible! I'm sure it tastes like that as well.
These look delicious alone and the perfect treats with a hot beverage
Nice food photography