Happy Diwali!!! (Imagine me saying that in a super high pitched excited voice!) My family doesn’t really celebrate Diwali, however, I still love how the entire country is all hyped up and doing these elaborate preparations for the festival. While the clothes and house decorations are only one aspect, the food you get to eat during this festival season is honestly the best part.
Personally, I’m not a big fan of Indian sweets. I would much rather eat chocolate cake than a bowl of gulab jamuns. However, I do feel that a lot of traditional things our grandmothers and maybe even mothers make during these festivals is getting lost in our need to be fancy and modern. So, to really get back to the roots as it were, I decided to spend the morning with my Aji (grandmother) and learn how to make traditional rava ladoos which we Maharashtrians use as an offering to not only the gods, but also guests.
For the ladoos:
- 1 cup rava (semolina)
- 1 cup roasted chana dal flour (roasted chickpea flour)
- 3/4 cup powdered sugar
- 1tsp chopped dry fruits
- 1tsp elichi powder (cardamom powder)
- 1/4 cup ghee
- Kishmish (raisins)
The recipe is so simple, it honestly took us less than half an hour.
Start by heating half the ghee in a pan. Add the rava and gently roast on a low flame. If you feel like the rava has absorbed all of the ghee, add some more.
Once well roasted, spread onto a plate to cool. After a few minutes add the roasted chana dal flour and begin mixing. I would say use your hand to mix because it’s honestly the easiest way to do so. However, if you feel like its still too hot to touch, go at it with a spoon.
Aji added the ghee to the mixture in stages. First in the pan without the rava, then in the pan with the rava, and then again now. She says that the only way to truly know how much ghee you need is as you go through the process, so don’t feel like you need to add all of it at once.
While it’s still warm, add the powdered sugar and continue mixing.
Once well incorporated, add the elichi powder and chopped dry fruit.
By this stage, the mixture should start holding shape. When you get the flavour just the way you want it, starting forming it into a ladoo. Place some kishmish on the top and keep pressing it together till its round. This dessert is all about flavour, so the ladoo doesn’t have to be perfectly round.
You don’t have to put it in the fridge to set, but I would recommend doing so for about half an hour so that you aren’t scared that the ladoos will fall apart.