What wouldnt I do to eat some chocolate? These days I am playing the strict hypocrite, the character who doesnt allow chocolates inside the house as daughter eats too many of them but secretly nurses the dream of eating some herself. I think these chunks are a great substitute for regular chocolates. Whats more? You can even make it on festivals for prasad and the kids will love the new variation to the regular burfis. You can also make this any time you dont have Khoya, condensed milk or any milk at all. You can use the milk powder stored in your refrigerator to quickly make this dessert. Continue reading »
My Sunday morning started off with scanning the Mint newspaper supplement. It was fully loaded with ideas for Diwali Gifts and some interesting recipes from Top Chefs. I particularly liked Tarla Dalal’s ideas for Low-Fat paneer and Khoya that can easily be made at home. Low fat khoya is made by steamed a dough of skimmed milk and water. This dough is then mashed and flavored with sugar and essence of choice. I wanted to immediately put this idea into action but I didnt have enough skimmed milk so I used the badam milk powder that had been chilling in my fridge for way too long.
We keep Ganeshji Ki Sthapna for about 10 days and submerge the idol on Ekadashi (a day in the Hindi Calender). These 10 days we do pooja everyday. Sometimes when I’m busy I dont find the time to make the prasad in the morning. For such days, I have certain instant sweet mixes which can remain fresh for almost 2 weeks. Whenever I need to make prasad for pooja or if I want to offer laddus to unexpected guests I just need to bind the mix and use it.
Some commonly used ingredients for making these kind of powders include rawa, roasted gram flour powder and groundnuts. Any of these can be used following the same procedure described below and can be stored for about 2 weeks in an air tight container without refrigeration. Here, I have used thin beaten rice which is a less commonly used base for laddu mixes. It however tastes good and the poha / beaten rice offers softness to the laddu.
You can bind the powder with hot milk or ghee. Sugar can also be replaced with Jaggery. You can select the dry fruits you wish to add to your laddu mix.
This is my entry to the Long Live the Shelf event that I’m hosting this month. This instant poha laddu mix can be stored for 2 weeks in an air tight container without refrigeration.
Also, sending this to the Original Recipe Event hosted by Lore of Culinarty.
- 1 cup thin poha / beaten rice
- 1/2 cup dry dessicated coconut powder
- less than 1/2 cup sugar (change as per your taste)
- Few almonds, raisins and cardamoms
- Few teaspoons of hot milk to bind
- Dry roast the beaten rice till its crinkly. Place in a dry mixie jar.
- Dry roast the dry coconut powder for about a minute, stirring continuously. Place along with poha in the mixie jar.
- Now roast almonds and cardamom seeds and add to the other roasted ingredients.
- Once the contents of the mixie jar cool add sugar and grind the contents into a powder.
- Store this powder in an air tight container.
- Whenever you need to prepare laddus just add hot milk / ghee to the powder and bind it.
- Dust the laddus with some more powder and garnish it with a raisin. You can fry raisins in the same ghee you heated for the binding.
Please NOTE :
- Its really easy for the thin poha and the dry coconut powder to get burnt. You need to stir them continuously.
- Please wait till the roasted ingredients completely cool off before adding sugar.
- While binding, add hot milk / ghee in small quantities else you might suddenly find the dough unmanageable.
Festivals bring a change in environment that serves as a much needed break from the daily hussle bussle of life. A time to stop and celebrate life and to enrich ourselves by praying to the divine. You might have noticed that although there is a lot of work for almost 2-3 days before a festival you somehow dont seem to get tired. Its the devotion that gives us a whole lot of energy and gives us so much relaxation even amidst work.
A day before Janamashti I went shopping for fruits, flowers, milk, curds and a dress to make my daughter look like Radha. Last Janamashtami I made her into Krishna as then she looked more like a cute boy. Now she is about 1.5 yrs old and is more girlish. She noticed the preparations going on at home and was well aware that she was going to have some fun. She consented to becoming Radha and even danced around the house before pooja
Prasad : Panjeeri & Charanamrut
These 2 dishes together form the most important prasad we offer lord Krishna every year on Janamashtmi.
- Roast 1 cup of wheat flour in a thick bottom pan. Stir continuously to ensure it doesnt get burnt.
- When its almost done add 1/2 teaspoon of elaichi powder.
- Turn off the gas and transfer the roasted wheat flour into a plate to cool.
- Once its cooled off completely add less than 1/2 cup of ground sugar.
Panjeeri can be made for traveling as it lasts for about 2-3 weeks. Just ensure the flour is roasted well for a longer shelf life.
Charan in Hindi means feet and amrut means necter. Hence, Charanamrut here means the necter from the feet of the lord. Its a mix of 5 ingredients and doesnt require cooking. This sacred necter is the first to be had after pooja, that means even before prasad.
Mix 1 cup milk, 1.5 tablespoons curds, 1 tablespoon honey, any dry fruits (we use chironji), few roasted lotus seeds (options) and 1 teaspoon of ghee.
Ganesh Chaturthi was possible in the same grand way we usually have it, thanks to Ganeshji for that. We actually returned from a 3-day long trip just 24 hrs before the festival. I was busy unpacking and getting the laundry done. However, on good occasions things just go on well. My husband surprised me by buying all the possible things I needed to make the occasion special. The next day I got busy making modaks , kheer and tamarind rice. We did pooja and really enjoyed the prasad. Somehow the tamarind rice we make all year doesnt taste as good as it does on Ganesh Chathuti. We worship the idol of Ganeshji for 10 days before submerging it in water.
For prasadam I made tamarind rice and Ganeshji’s favorite modaks.
- Heat 2.5 cups of water. Once water boils add about 1 cup of rice flour.
- Cook till it thickens. Now cool this mix.
- Separately heat 1/2 cup jaggery with 1/2 cup grated coconut. Cook till mixture comes together.
- Flatten the rice dough with your palms and fill it with the coconut mixture. Seal in the shape of a modak.
- Steam modaks for 20 mins.
This is my entry to the Krishna Janamashtmi and Ganesh Chaturthi event hosted by Purva’s Daawat. What I like so much about the event started on monthly festivals is that it allows us to know more about each others culture and traditions. We get a glimpse of how homes in different parts of India look on festive occasions. Our ways of celebrating the same festival differ every 1000 miles but the enthusiasm is shared across borders.
Being a chocoholic by nature I’m always looking for ways to make chocolate desserts and goodies. Bet this wont make my doctor very happy. Anyway, here is the recipe of an almond chocolate fudge that I tried a few days ago. It was so delicious that I started eating it without even allowing it to set completely. Its too long to wait overnight to eat a yummy fudge. I shared this chocolate with a few neighbors and they liked it too. I’m sure this fudge is going to be a regular at our place given that its liked equally by kids and grown ups.
This is my entry to the Color in Food event hosted by EC of Simple Indian Food. Brown is the color of chocolate, which I simply love!
- Nestle Everyday Milk powder – 1 cup
- Brown Sugar – 3/4 cup
- Unsalted Butter – 1/3 cup
- Cocoa powder – 2 heaped teaspoons
- Water – 3/4 cup
- Milk – 1/2 cup
- Almonds (roasted and powdered) – 2 tablespoons
- Few drops of Chocolate milk essence
- 5-6 Black Raisins (de-seeded)
- Take Sugar in a heavy bottom pan and add an equal quantity of water.
- Cook the sugar syrup till a drop of it in plain water does not dissolve. That indicates its tight enough to bind.
- Reduce the flame. Now Add butter and stir quickly till it melts.
- Mix in milk powder and milk alternately. Ensure no lumps are formed.
- In case you find the consistency unmanageable then add some more milk. Ensure the mixture is pasty, not watery.
- Now turn off the heat. Mix in the cocoa powder, almond powder and raisins. Add a few drops of chocolate milk essence and beat well.
- Pour out chocolate fudge into a greased plate. Allow it to cool off and then give the fudge any desired shape.
- Dust it on powdered chocolate biscuits (alternately you can use roasted almond powder)
- Refrigerate overnight and enjoy chocolate fudge the next day.