I stumbled up on this sweet shop while roaming around in Mauzamjahi Market in Old city Hyderabad. It looked like a normal sweet shop. Most of them were regular but one sweet caught my eye . It had a peculiar name – Jauzi halwa. I’d never heard this name before, so was curious. It was pasty but danedaar (grainy) and kept in small chaffing dishes on one part of the counter. It looked innocuous enough, but I was intrigued.
Usually sweets are made to look as pretty as they can. This was the first time that I saw the jauzi halwa displayed in ugly looking chaffing dishes. I was even more intrigued. I then asked for a tasting and was gladly offered a generous tasting helping by the shop assistant. It tasted delicious, but the flavour profile confused me. It was tasting familiar but I couldn’t place it.
I had it again and then it struck me that the predominant flavour was nutmeg. Very very unusual. I’d never had a nutmeg flavoured dessert before this. The nutmeg flavour in the jauzi halwa was predominant but not overpowering. The base of the halwa was milk converted to khoya. But I also got a sense of wheat milk and saffron added to this.
The overall taste and mouth feel of the jauzi halwa is sensational. But it’s a very heavy sweet. Laden with loads of ghee, but thankfully not too much sugar.
Hamidi Confectioners was started by the current owner’s grandfather in 1915 in Mauzam Jahi market in the Old city part of Hyderabad. The Nizam of Hyderabad liked the jauzi halwa so much that he sent a letter to the owner of the shop to name his shop after the nickname of one of his son’s. That’s why the shop’s called Hamidi Confectioners. A poster of this letter from the Nizam is displayed in the shop. Here’s Mohammed Hussain, the owner sharing more about the Jauzi halwa.
Happy hunting and chowder-on!