Diwali is one of the most celebrated festivals in India. Also known as the “festival of lights,” culturally, it signifies a lot of different things but the most common is triumph of light over darkness (good over evil). Some of the fondest memories I have of Diwali are from my childhood: lighting hundreds of earthen lamps with my sisters and going for mithai (Indian sweets) shopping with my grandfather. In India, sweet shops make gazillion different kinds of sweets on Diwali. Although the variety is staggering, one food group is common to most Indian sweets–dairy (milk, ghee, paneer). As I primarily follow a vegan diet now, over the past few years I have tried making vegan replicas of some of the Indian sweets I enjoyed as a kid, especially on Diwali. These bite-size almond-pistachio fudge bowls taste very much like almond-pistachio (badam-pista) rolls, but do not have any processed sugar or dairy. Most importantly, it takes only ten minutes to make these fudge bowls. Happy Diwali!!
I have used almond flour (not meal) but you could also grind raw almonds to the flour consistency. Raw, unsalted pistachio work the best in this recipe. Maple syrup and dates add the sweetness. Green cardamom offers the signature Indian taste. If I had in my pantry, I would have also added a drop or two of rose water to these almond-pistachio fudge bowls.
You can store these fudge bowls in refrigerator for 3-4 days. Enjoy!
Almond-pistachio Fudge Bowl (Badam-pista mithai)
To make almond dough:
- 1/2 cup almond flour
- 1 medjool date (or any other)
- 1/2 tsp coconut oil
- 1 tbsp maple syrup (or sub with date syrup or honey)
To make pistachio filling
- 1/4 cup pistachio (raw, unsalted, shelled)
- 1 tbsp maple syrup
- 1 tbsp almond flour
- 1/4 tsp cardamom (ground)
To make almond dough:
- In a small food processor* add almond flour, medjool date, coconut oil, and maple syrup. Process till well-mixed. The mixture will take on the consistency of play-dough. While preparing the pistachio filling, let the almond dough rest in refrigerator.
To make pistachio filling:
- Soak raw, unsalted, shelled pistachio for at least one hour in warm water**. Peel off if there is any red skin on the nut. Add soaked pistachio, maple syrup, almond flour, and cardamom powder to a small food processor and process till the mixture is grainy in texture***.
- To assemble the fudge bowl, roll almond dough in a cylindrical shape and cut into eight equal pieces. Then mold each piece into a bowl shape (or get creative and make any other shape) and fill with pistachio mixture. Store in refrigerator for 3-4 days. Enjoy