Albanian Halva

Halva is a simple and tasty ancient desert. Among the Albanians it was served mainly for holy nights or in remembrance of deceased family members.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter (or coconut oil/butter)
  • 2 cups flour
  • Ground nuts
  • Sherbet
    • 1 cup sugar
    • 2 cups water

Substitutions:

  • Maple syrup can be used instead of the sugar sherbet
  • Coconut oil or butter can be used instead of dairy butter.

Toasting the Flour

In a wide pan, melt the butter in medium heat and add the oil. When the butter is heated, add the flour slowly while mixing it with a wooden spoon until it blends with the melted butter. Lower the heat and continue toasting the flour while mixing it carefully to prevent burning, for about 30 minutes, until it turns brown. Towards the end you can add some ground nuts (walnuts, almonds) and toast them all together for a few minutes.

Finishing with the sherbet

In another pot boil the water and add the sugar to make the sherbet. Mix together and turn off the heat. (The same can be substituted with a cup of maple syrup.)

When the flour has sufficiently browned, turn down the heat and slowly add the sherbet (or maple syrup) and mix continuously for a few minutes to prevent clumps. Turn off the heat and let cool.

After cooling, halva can be shaped for serving using a spoon or spread into a pan and cut into cubes. Sugar and nuts can be added on top for decoration. Eat fresh and share with friends and neighbors.


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