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A traditional Rosh Hashana treat popular among Indian Jews for exchanging with friends and family. For more information, visit

Serves: Varies by serving size

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A handful of agar agar (china grass)
100 grams cornstarch
1 tin coconut milk (available in Indian shops)
2½ tins water (use coconut tin for measuring)
1 cup sugar
⅓ stick butter
1 teaspoon salt
1½ tablespoons lemon juice
Saffron, cardamom and nutmeg powder to taste
Chopped almonds, pistachios, or other nuts


  1. Soak a small fistful of china grass (cut into small pieces) in hot water until dissolved. Mix all the ingredients, except butter, in a non-stick pot and bring to a boil over high heat. Add butter.
  2. Reduce heat and stir the mixture constantly until it thickens and pulls to the center of the pot (about 20 to 25 minutes). The halwa is done when you can pour a small amount onto a glass plate and you are able to lift the halwa off the plate.
  3. Add lemon juice, stir and pour into plates. Sprinkle with nuts and serve.

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