happy sankranti to all our viewers! Vegan Sweet Pumpkin Payasa is a delightful South Indian dessert made with sweet pumpkin, locally known as sihi kumbalakai or chinikayi. This luscious dish combines the goodness of sweet pumpkin with grated coconut, cracked wheat (godi nucchu), or alternatives like whole wheat rava or rice. To enhance the aromatic profile, cardamom pods and clove are added, along with almonds.
The sweetening agent is jaggery, allowing for customization based on personal taste preferences. Additionally, the dish incorporates cashew pieces and raisins, providing a delightful medley of flavors and textures. This vegan dessert not only satisfies the sweet tooth but also offers numerous health benefits. Sweet pumpkin is rich in vitamins A and C, contributing to eye health and boosting the immune system. The inclusion of almonds adds a dose of healthy fats and vitamin E, promoting heart health. The use of jaggery as a sweetener introduces minerals like iron and potassium, making this pumpkin payasa not only a treat for the taste buds but also a nourishing option for overall well-being.
- sweet pumpkin / sihi kumbalakai/chinikayi – around 1.5 cups of cut pumpkin
- 3/4 cup grated coconut
- 2 tbsp cracked wheat/godi nucchu (you can use whole wheat rava or rice as well)
- 2 cardamom and 1 clove
- around 20 almonds
- around 1/2 cup jaggery or to your taste
- 1 tbsp cashew pieces and
- 1 tbsp raisins
- around 3 cups of water
- Begin by cutting the pumpkin. Peel its skin, remove the seeds, and then dice it into small cubes as demonstrated.
- Transfer the diced pumpkin to a pan with a thick bottom. Add water and allow it to cook for 2 to 3 minutes on medium heat.
- If you’re not following a vegan diet, consider roasting the pumpkin with ghee during this step.
- In a separate process, grind almonds, cardamom, and clove with cracked wheat. Combine this powder with coconut and some water, grinding it into a fine paste.
- After the initial cooking period, approximately 2 to 3 minutes, introduce the coconut-wheat paste, along with jaggery. Add enough water to facilitate cooking. Mix the ingredients well and let it simmer for 7 to 8 minutes on low heat.
- Once the pumpkin is thoroughly cooked and the payasa has reached the desired consistency, turn off the heat.
- Stir in raisins and cashews into the mixture.
- Serve the delicious payasa and enjoy