Vatli Dal or Limbu Dal is mainly prepared during Ganesh festival. After immersion of the idol of Ganesha, it is prepared as a prasad to bid him farewell. It is a very quick snack to make. Go ahead and try this very tasty dish made from chick peas.
Serves – 3
Chana Dal (chick pea) – 2 cups
Green chilies (chopped) – 4 medium sized
Curry leaves – 6 – 7
Mustard seeds – ½ teaspoon
Turmeric powder – ½ teaspoon
Cumin seeds – ½ teaspoon
Asafoetida – ½ teaspoon
Oil – 3 tablespoons
Sugar – 2 teaspoon
Salt – to taste
Ginger (grated) – 1 ½ teaspoon
Lemon juice – 1 tablespoon.
Coriander springs (finely chopped) – to garnish
Freshly desiccated coconut – to garnish
- Soak the chana dal in water for 2 hours. After 2 hours grind this dal very finely in the grinder. Add little water to grind it well.
- In a thick bottomed pan or a kadhai heat oil. Add the mustard seeds and cumin seeds. Let it crackle. Now add the turmeric powder, asafoetida, green chilies, ginger and curry leaves.
- Now add the grounded dal. Add the salt and sugar and sauté on medium flame till the dal completely dries up and there are no lumps left.
- Now add the lemon juice and mix well and sauté for another minute.
- Sprinkle chopped coriander and freshly desiccated coconut and serve hot.
You can also grind the green chilies along with the dal.
Lemon is the most important ingredients so do not forget that!!!
Nariyal burfi, naral vadi or khobra pak is a very common yet famous sweet prepared in many households of India. Very easy to prepare it’s quick and simple dish. Another recipe usually prepared during festivals or functions.
Freshly desiccated coconut – 1 cup tightly filled
Sugar – 1 cup
Green cardamom powder (Elaichi) – 1 teaspoon
Clarified butter (ghee) – 3 tablespoons
Note - This complete recipe is to be prepared on a medium flame only.
- In a pan heat 2 tablespoons clarified butter and add the coconut and sauté for 3 minutes on medium flame.
- Now add the sugar and mix well. Stir in between till all the sugar melts.
- Add the green cardamom powder and mix well.
- After the sugar melts completely the mixture will thicken.
- Grease a plate with ½ tablespoon clarified butter and also a small flat based bowl with the remaining clarified butter.
- Transfer the coconut and sugar mixture to this plate and with the help of the flat based bowl spread the mixture evenly. We use a bowl to spread the mixture since it is too hot and can’t be done using one’s hands.
- While the mixture is hot, cut it in to square shapes (burfi) of desired size using a knife.
- Once cooled remove from the plate and transfer the squares to an air tight jar.
Always cut the desired shapes in desired sizes when the coconut sugar mixture is hot. It is difficult to cut once the mixture cools and dries up.
You can also add saffron strands (5- 6), chopped almonds along with green cardamom powder for a richer taste.
You can also add ¼ cup mango pulp and thereby reducing the sugar quantity to ¾ cup to make a mango burfi.
Godacha Sheera (shira) is a very famous sweet dish that originates from Maharashtra. It is a very common prasad, naivedyam (holy food offering) prepared during festivals, functions or a happy occasion. Satyanarayan pooja (religious observance or ritual followed by the hindus) always has Sheera as prasad.
It is made from Rava or semolina. Other common names in various parts of India are Upma, suji ka halva etc. These differ in tastes and variety from the Sheera.
Serves – 3
Rava (thin semolina) – 1 cup
Ghee (clarified butter) – ¾ cup
Sugar – 1 cup
Milk – 1 cup
Saffron – 4-5 strands
Elaichi (green cardamom) – 1 tspn
Raisins, Cashewnuts – 2 tbspn
Banana (cut into small pieces) – 1 medium
- In a pan heat the ghee and add semolina. Roast it on a low flame till it turns golden in color. Meanwhile in another pan bring to boil the milk along with saffron.
- Add cashewnuts, raisins and banana to the semolina mixture and sauté for 3-4 minutes.
- Add sugar to the semolina mixture and stir briefly for 2 minutes.
- Add the saffron added milk to the semolina mixture. Add green cardamom and stir for 2 minutes. Cook it at a low flame for another 2 minutes with lid on, so the mixture thickens.
- Serve hot.
Saffron, green cardamom, raisins, cashewnuts are known to add rich flavor and taste to Sheera. But incase not available, can be kept optional.
People who have a sweet tooth but are advised to control their sugar content can add jaggery (¾ cup) instead of sugar. This adds a natural brown color.
Modak is a very popular sweet mainly in Maharashtra and South India. It is considered to be the favorite food of Lord Ganesh (Hindu elephant god).
Generally, 21 modaks are offered as a naivedyam(offerings) to the deity.
Serves – 2 – 3
Rice Flour – 1 cup
Desiccated Coconut – 1 ½ cups
Jaggery (crushed) – ¾ cup
Cardamom powder – 1 tspn
Oil – 2 tspns
Salt – a pinch
Water – 1 cup
- In a pan bring to boil water, oil and salt together.
- Add the rice flour gradually so that no lumps are formed. Mix well to form soft dough.
- In another pan mix the coconut and jaggery together. On a low flame cook till the jaggery melts. Do not over cook. Add the cardamom powder.
- Make 8 – 10 lemon sized balls of the dough.
- On a greased plastic sheet flatten each ball into a thin disk. Check the edges, reduce the thickness if necessary.
- Put coconut and jaggery mixture in the center of the disk and form six to seven pleats by using your fingers. Gather all the pleats together to the top. Remove the excess dough and keep a small tip at the top.
- Till all the modaks are shaped cover the uncooked ones with a wet muslin cloth.
- Dip the uncooked modaks in water.
- Steam the modaks in an idli steamer for 20 minutes.
- Serve hot.
If you do not have an idli steamer then you can cook it in a pressure cooker. Remove the whistle and fill the 1/4 cooker with water. Keep a small bowl filled with water at the base. In another vessel place greased plastic sheet and place the shaped modaks in it. Keep this vessel over the small bowl and cook it for 20 minutes.
Place 4-5 modaks at a time depending upon the size of the vessel or the steamer. Do not put all of them together. There is a chance that they might break apart.
You can also add chopped almonds, raisins to the coconut and jaggery mixture.
Serve with pure ghee.
Gulab Jamun is a very popular Indian dessert. Usually made during festivals or special occassions. Various types of Gulab jamuns are available with different flavors.
Serves – 3
Khava/Mava – 2 cups
Milk Powder – 3 tbspns
Maida – 3 tbspns
Sugar – 2 cups
Water – 1 1/2 cup
Cardamom Powder – 1/2 tspn
Saffron – 6 – 8 strands
Oil/ Ghee – to deep fry
- Mash the khava and mix it along with the milk powder, maida and a little water to make a soft dough.
- Shape equal portions of this dough in to round balls.
- Heat oil/ghee in a kadhai and deep fry these balls on a low flame till they turn golden in color. Let it cool.
- Heat water and sugar together till the sugar dissolves.
- Add cardamom powder and saffron strands to it. Stir well.
- Soak the fried jamuns in the sugar syrup.
Always fry the jamuns on a low flame or it will remain uncooked from inside.
You can also add rose water or rose essence to the sugar syrup to get the rose flavour.