Must-try sweets for this Diwali
Rawa Besan LaddooCreative Commons/ Anupama

Diwali may be the festival of lights but equally, if not more important than the crackers and diyas, are the sweets or mithai. It is a sign of respect to share mithai with your neighbours and friends. Making them at home would not only make your gift all the more special, but it will also ensure that no unwanted preservatives or chemicals are used.

Follow these quick and easy recipes that takes no more than half an hour to prepare, to impress your guests and enjoy a Happy Diwali 2014:

Khoya or Mawa Barfi recipe

Khoya or Mawa is basically condensed milk, and to prepare barfi with it, is quick and easy. Put one cup of Khoya or Mawa in a pan and add quarter cup of sugar. Keep mixing the two ingredients in medium flame until the mixture becomes gooey. Grease a plate with ghee or oil and pour the mixture on it, before refrigerating it for an hour. Take out the now solid Khoya mixture and cut it into diamond shaped pieces. Garnish with almonds or pistachios. These make for the perfect Diwali gift. 

Shahi Tukda recipe

First make rabri, add chopped nuts to it and keep it aside. Take four slices of bread, remove the brown sides, cut them into smaller pieces and heat them until they turn crispy. Prepare sugar syrup by boiling sugar in water. Soak the bread pieces in the sugar syrup and arrange them in a plate before pouring rabri over them. This dish can be served chilled or warm. (Note: If you wish to reduce sugar intake, the sugar syrup can be avoided and instead pour the rabri over crispy bread pieces).

10 minute Rasmalai recipe

Impress everyone this festival of lights by making Rasmalai from scratch. Split whole milk using lemon juice and squeeze dry the cheese (Khoya or Mawa) that settles on top. Kneed the Khoya or Mawa and shape them into balls, which are then added to a pan of boiling sugary water. Take them out when the balls puff into twice their original size and pour rabri over them and garnish with dry fruits. (Rabri is a perfectly proportioned combination of milk and sugar).

Double Ka Meetha recipe

Add two cups of sugar to two cups of water and boil the mixture. Add some crushed cardamom, lime juice and saffron powder before keeping the sugar syrup aside. To make this Hyderabadi dish, fry some bread pieces in ghee until they turn golden brown. Fry cashew nuts, raisins, almonds, pistachios and dates in the left-over ghee. Soak the fried bread pieces in sugar syrup, and arrange them in a dish before sprinkling the fried dried fruits on it. Pour rabri, and serve your Double Ka Meetha chilled or warm.

Besan Laddoo recipe

Add six teaspoons of ghee into a bowl and roast chickpea flour on slow flame till it turns brown colour. Add two to three tablespoon milk into the flour and mix thoroughly. Keep it aside to cool for a couple of minutes. Add sugar, cardamom powder and chopped dry fruits to the mixture as per requirement and mix well. Make medium sized balls of the mixture and place them on a plate and garnish with left-over dry fruits.