Chalta Hai…Diwali Hai

Finally, My kids decided to sleep at the same time, giving me some time to cook up those diwali goodies that I wanted to make. I went for the simple ones first, the ones that I had made before and hence did not require much thinking. By thinking, I mean Improvising when things go wrong. Hey, its the thought that counts. Besides, I don’t think I have ever met a combination of ghee and sugar that I haven’t liked. In fact, I love eating ghee mixed with sugar or should I say Sugar mixed with ghee.Yummmmm…As for the dreaded “C” word,Chalta Hai…Diwali Hai!!

So first, I went for besan Ladoos. My husband loves Besan ladoos. They are right up in his list of fave things right after Cars, Cricket and Crab. Those are his “C” words. Then, its besan ladoos. Before you all go pitying us, we are talking about material things here. The “F” word is on the top of the list. Family, people? What did you think the “F” word was?

So, anyway here is a fool proof recipe for Besan ladoos. I just follow it blindly. this recipe makes about 30 Ladoos.

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3 cups besan/Chickpea flour
1 1/2 cups Ghee
3 cups powdered sugar
2 green Cardmoms pods, peeled and powdered

Sieve the besan to get rid of any lumps.

Heat the ghee in a heavy bottomed pot on medium heat. Yes, all one and half cups of it. Don’t think, just do it. Don’t use oil. Don’t use the Store bought ghee. Try fresh home made ghee. I made a fesh batch of ghee in the morning. Do it. Go the extra mile. Chalta hai…Diwali Hai. Its worth it.

Add the besan, and keep stirring and stirring and stirring and stirring. It will kind of seize into a tight ball first, making it a bit tough to stir. But after a few minutes, it will actually become the consistency of “pakoda batter” making the stirring simpler. So, keep stirring and stirring and stirring. Until the besan goes from sunny yellow color to a burnt orange. The color ‘burnt orange’ not ‘burnt’ besan. Oh, No!!
Kind of like going from sunny yellow of the summer to the oranges of autumn, isnt it?. How symbolic!!! Yes, I am going nuts. Chalta hai…Diwali Hai

Just keep stirring it and dont even think about looking away for a second. The second you look away, will be the time it will decide to change color. And it can go from deliciously roasted to yucky toasted in a jiffy. The best way to know its done, is the amazing nutty smell that starts permiating through your home. My friend once told me how her mom would just shout out from the kitchen “does it smell like ladoos, yet?” to know if they were done. When the besan is done, believe me, you will know and those zombies sitting in front of your television will know, too.

Take it off the heat, and let it cool completely. It will be a little liquidy(If thats a word, you know what i mean).Thats ok, thats the way it should be. While it cools, pound regular sugar into powder in your blender. Don’t go for the powdered sugar in the market. They have cornstarch in them, which has its place, but not in besan ladoos.

When completely cool, add the sugar, cardamom powder and raisins and chopped almonds/ cashews(If using) and mix till incorporated. Shape into golf ball size rounds. Yummy besan ladoos are ready.

With the besan ladoos done and the kids still down, I decided to go for another staple at our home during diwali. They are called “tukdi” and they are crisp, savoury and a perfect antithesis to the sweet ladoos. Very simple ingredients, but can be quite a chore because they have to cut into diamond shapes and then deep fried. But, I cannot imagine diwali without these.

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First we make the dough

3 cups regular atta/ wheat flour
1 tbsp Chilli powder
1/4 tsp Hing/asafetida
salt to taste (abt 1/2 tbsp)
1 tbsp Ghee
Water, enough to make a malliable dough

Mix all the dry ingredients together in a wide bowl. Heat up the ghee and add it to the bowl. Take a fork and mix the ghee with the flour. The flour will change color. Mix thoroughly, with a fork at first and then fingers after the ghee has cooled enough, until all of the flour has changed color. Then, add water, little by little, until the dough is soft enough to roll out but still tougher than a regular roti dough. Let it rest for 10 mins.

Heat oil in a kadhai. The kadhai should hold the oil at least 2 inches deep. Take balls of dough and roll them out like you would a roti. Don’t use flour to prevent it from sticking, use some of the hot oil from the kadhai.Cut into diamond shapes. I use a pizza cutter to do the job.

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Deep fry in hot oil. Keep the oil at smoking point.The pieces will hit the bottom and rise up immediately. Turn them over. And after the other side cooks up, remove onto dry paper towels. Keep doing that until you have used up all of the dough. Store the cooled tukdis in an airtight container.

And thus, finally, I have at least 2 diwali goodies cooked up. My Mother makes five and I think it is kind of a tradition to cook up five. Well, I am not even half way there. But, hey, at least I have made a start. Between the roasted besan and Deep frying, at least the house smells like diwali. So what, if it is 2 in the morning and I hear Anoushka up and demanding her mommy. Chalta hai…Diwali hai

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15 thoughts on “Chalta Hai…Diwali Hai

  1. That was yet another absolutely beautiful write-up Vee !! I am still waiting on my mom’s pics for the JFI post, shud have them by tonite. I hope to send you the link by tomoro morning. I hope you’ll say, Chalta Hai…Diwali Hai….even for this πŸ˜€
    A very Happy Deepavali to you and the Family πŸ™‚

  2. Vee-
    I followed a link from Shilpa’s site here…wow! very nice pics and i must admit that your writing style is QUITE entertaining and made me laugh…all by myself…good thing the windows are closed these days…
    I just made a fresh batch of ghee yesterday, thinking that my newly-acquired recipe for carrot snow/gajar barfi would require it….it didn’t. But i added a couple spoons anyway.:-) I think I’ll try your besan ladoos, just because I don’t want my ghee to be sitting there lonely too long:-)…and i WILL powder the sugar as you suggest!

  3. Hi Vee,
    those are really great pictures!…besan ladoo looks very soft…thanks for sharing.And wish u and your family members a great diwali:-)
    Vee another request..If i send my entry tomorow is that ok….??I will try to do today if not tomorow for sure….waiting for your reply.Thank you

  4. Hi Vee,
    You sure are a very very busy Mommy, staying up till 2 to cook and that too during a work week !!!!
    You sure are giving me a complex(inferior one) here, that too during Diwali, not fair. To compensate send over some of those fabulous looking laddoos.
    Happy Diwali to you and your family

    –sandeepa

    Hey sandeepa, come over anytime!!!

  5. Thank you so much everyone.

    A Happy Diwali and a very prosperous New Year to you all.

    Priya, Meena..Yes , its fine if you send in your entries tomorrow.

    Pelicano, let me know how your laddoos turn out.

  6. Hey Veeeeeeeeeeeeee you are gr8. I like your recipe’s pictures along with write-up. I know you are all-round. Your family is very lucky to have you. Happy Diwali to you and all your fans.

    zara amchya family la hi saanga !!! Happy Diwali!!!

  7. vee-

    the ladoos turned out fantasticly! i made my own ghee….i sifted the besan….i ground the sugar fine…..the besan i browned in the ghee to perfection and a beautiful aroma….i cleaned and ground the cardamom….and added only almonds…..all went well,…… now….do you have a recipe to stop eating them? seriously…..i’m thinking of them now, and i’ve already had 3 today…. πŸ™‚

    Pelicano, glad the ladoos turned out great for you. And yes, I do have a recipe for you to stop eating them. Just finish them all!!!..that way no more left to eat πŸ˜‰

  8. this sounds soooooooooo yummy…i want to make some, but i have a quick question first…how do i make ghee at home? i have always bought it, but would like to learn to make it myself.

    Quickest hassle free way–melt unsalted butter the way you would ghar ka makkhan

  9. Hi! Vee,

    I had been thinking about making Besan Ladoo for quite sometime now but never had the oppertunity to actually do so. Today finally I decided that it was time and sat down in front of my computer googling for recipes. After lloking through many different ones I cam across yours and instantly loved your writing style. Your really bring so much to your recipes and to your wonderful site.

    As soon as I finished reading your recipe I started making the ladoos. Your recipe is absolutely perfect. I just finished making about 40 golf sized ladoos. I haven’t tried it yet as I am waiting for my other half to come home first so we can offer it together in our temple first but the smell is to die for.

    I also just finished reading about your Sushi incident. it was hilarious. Thank you again so much for the wonderful recipe

  10. hi,
    excellent style of prsenting the recipes.
    i tried the ladoos n trust me, they cam out delicious.
    ooooffff….u’ll probably get my belly de-shaped by ur sumptous recipies!!

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