Saturday, 10 November 2012
Rava Laddu (semolina ladoo/rava ladoo)
With Diwali round the corner, I am quite guilty that I have not posted many recipes that signify the celebrations during this wonderful festival season. Having said that, it has been quite hard to post any recipe for that matter when we have a baby at home. I try my best to take pictures of every step and hopefully of the final dish. Diwali brings back loads of childhood memories and the ofcourse most of them centre around food and fireworks. I remember my mom used to make do many savouries and sweets although she had little children to care for. Mixture, mysore pa, murukku, thattai etc etc. Oh boy, she had so much patience! Well, as for me, I find my day filled with just the regular chores, entertaining pre-schooler and a baby, cleaning up after them and so on. However, I wish I could get a sudden burst of energy and time to make some Diwali specials just to create that festive spirit for my children, the one that we enjoyed as a child. I know I could do it next year too but I believe in the present. For that reason, I told in my son’s pre-school that i will help them with som Diwali celebration. We intend to do rangoli, paint/colour some lamps and make into festoons on one day. I will be telling them the story behind Diwali and also making a sweet with them. With suggestions from some of the lovely readers, I managed to come up with a recipe that will be enjoyable for kids and suitable for their dietary restrictions.
When I did a few experiments in my kitchen to come up with a recipe that has traditional Indian roots, yet suitable for children to make/assemble, I realised that I need to make more traditional sweets and post their recipes. Anyway, I chose this recipe because it will be easy for children to lay their hands on. The traditional rava laddu is made with loads of ghee and milk and shaped when still warm and that I thought is not ideal for children to do. For a change, I had decided to almost stick to a recipe I found on another blog as I barely and the time to experiment. However, unfortunately, the recipe did not quite work.
It is important to make sure the rava is roasted very well as that is the only way it gets cooked in this dish. This dish is quite forgiving in the sense that you could always add more condensed milk to make it thicker or add more roasted rava if it was way too soft. Treat the quantities as guidelines because different rava draw different amount of liquid and as there is no question of overmixing the dough, feel free to mix and check if you are there. The laddus will be slightly soft soon after they are made, but will firm as they rest, which however, won’t be for long. I will be skipping the nuts while making this for children due to allergies but the addition of ground almond, for those who can eat it, makes this laddu even better. If you want to skip it, replace with semolina. I had o use a bit of icing sugar as the recipe I followed did not work. However, if you find the sweetness from condensed milk inadequate, feel free to add the sugar. The quantity below will make about 15 laddus. Best kept in the fridge, but I did not have that problem as they were all gone!
1 ¼ cup semolina (fine preferably)
2 tablespoon powdered sugar/icing sugar (optional)
1/3 cup ground almond
¾ cup sweetened condensed milk
Few strands of saffron, steep it in a tablespoon hot water
2 generous pinches cardamom powder
Any other nuts of choice, chopped
2-3 tablespoon ghee
Heat little ghee and fry the raisins until it puffs up, keep aside
Add rest of the ghee and fry the semolina on low flame until it begins to change colour and aromatic
Transfer to a mixing bowl and add ground almond, fried raisins, saffron water, icing sugar, cardamom powder. Add most of the condensed milk and mix to a consistency when it resembles a sticky dough but you manage to roll it into balls. You can always add more condensed milk if needed
Make bite size balls. You could roll them in chopped nuts or dessicated coconuts or some coco powder