Traditional Recipe...for Diwali

Badam Fudge   by Mrs. Lakshmi Shankar

Ingredients

 Badam -1 cup
 Milk - 2 cups
 Condensed milk -1 cup
 Ghee - 1/2 cup
 Powdered Sugar -1 cup
 Vanilla essence - 4 tsps
 Cocoa powder -1 tsps


Method


 Cut 3/4 cup of badam into equal sized pieces. (Can make one badam into three)
 Fry them in ghee till they are golden.
 In a non-stick kadai add milk, condensed milk and powdered sugar.
 Keep on mixing till the mixture thicknes.
 Add ghee periodically while mixing.
 After about 15 minutes the mixture becomes non-sticky and leaves the sides of
   the kadai.
 Switch off the gas and add the cocoa powder, vanilla essence and the cut badam.
 Mix well and transfer to a plate brushed with ghee.
 Cut the rest of the badam into halves and fry in ghee.
 Arrange on top of the fudge evenly.
 When it cools down a bit cut into equal sized pieces.
 Badam fudge is ready to serve.


Kesari
by Mrs. Lakshmi Shankar

Kesari has probably obtained its name from the 'kesar' otherwise known as saffron because of its colour. Though kesari tastes great when had separate it can also be relished alongwith one of your favourite icecreams as a dessert.

Ingredients(for four people)

 Suji(Semolina) - 1 cup
 Sugar - 2 cups
 Ghee - 3/4 cup
 Water - 2 cups
 Saffron (soaked in warm
 Milk for half an hour) - one pinch
 Cashewnuts(broken) - 1/4 cup
 Raisins - 10-15
 Red food colour - 2 drops
 Cardamom powder - 1/4 tsp

Garnishing

 Almonds and cashewnuts cut into thin strips - 1/4 cup

Preparation

Boil the required water. In the meantime, heat the ghee in a kadai, fry the cashewnuts and raisins. Add the semolina now and fry continuously till it is golden. Now add the boiled water. Keep on mixing till the semolina absorbs all the water. Now add the sugar, saffron, food colour and mix for about five minutes. You might find lumps in the middle. Slightly crush them with the ladle. When the kesari starts leaving the sides of the kadai switch of the gas and mix the cardamom powder. The required consistency is that of halwa. Transfer to a serving bowl and garnish with slivered almonds and cashewnuts. Serve hot or cold.

Vermicelli Kheer by Mrs. Lakshmi Shankar

Kheer is an important sweet dish served at the beginning or end of a meal during any celebration, in India. Usually kheer is made out of rice, saboodana or vermicelli combined with sugar or jaggery alongwith milk.

Ingredients (for four people)

Roasted vermicelli
( broken into small pieces) - 1 cup
Sugar - 1 cup
Milk - 2 cups
Saffron(soaked in warm milk) - one pinch
Cardamom powder - 1/4 tsp
Sweetened Condensed milk - 1/2 tin

Garnishing

Ghee - 1 tbsp
Cashewnuts - 1/2 cup
Raisins - 10

Boil the vermicelli in a thick bottomed broad based vessel in one cup of water for a minute. Add one cup of milk and let the vermicelli get cooked for another minute. Now add sugar and saffron. Let it boil for 3-4 minutes. Keep on mixing periodically. Add the rest of the milk and boil again. Ensure that the kheer does not boil down. Now add the condensed milk and cardamom powder. Switch of the gas. Transfer the vermicelli kheer to a serving bowl. Garnish with cashewnuts and raisins fried in ghee. Serve hot or cold.

Palgova or thirattipal by Mrs. Lakshmi Shankar

Normally thirattipal is made out of fresh milk and sugar. The milk is allowed to boil till it thickens and curdles. The milk has to be mixed continuously. After that sugar is added till the required consistency is obtained. You can also make thirattipal with milk and powdered jaggery. This is quite a time consuming process. Try out this simpler recipe which is made in a microwave and which gives the same taste but can be prepared in a jiffy.


Ingredients

Sweetened Condensed milk - 2 tins
Fresh yoghurt - 2 tbsp
Ghee - 6 tsp

Preparation

Take a broad deep microwave safe bowl. Pour all the ingredients in the bowl and mix well. Keep the bowl in the microwave and cook in the high for 2 minutes. Take it out, mix well and again cook for 2 more minutes in high. Repeat the process once more. If required keep for one more minute. The expected consistency is that the ghee starts to come out and the thirattipal obtains a pink colour. Thirattpal is ready to serve.

Adirasam by Mrs. Lakshmi Shankar

Adirasam is a sweet snack, which hails from southern part of India and is made during weddings and other festive occasions. The making of adirasam is tricky till the preparation of dough. If the steps are followed carefully, it makes a wonderful sweet with a yummy taste. And yes, it can be stored for a month in airtight containers.

Ingredients

 Plain rice - 2 cups
 Jaggery - 2 cups
 Cardamom powder - 3 tsps
 Coconut pieces - 1 cup
 Ghee - deep frying

Preparation

Wash and soak the rice for 2 hours.
Again wash it thoroughly and drain.
Before the rice gets dried up, powder the rice in a mixie.
Sieve it three or four times till the rice flour becomes soft and silky.
Measure and keep the rice flour aside.
Note that the rice flour will be slightly wet.
Powder the jaggery into fine pieces.
Cut the coconut into slices and chop them into small pieces.
In a kadai, add 1/4 cup of water and the powdered jaggery.
When the jaggery melts into the water filter it once to remove the mud.
Again return the jaggery to the kadai and boil it.
Keep on mixing and add the cut coconut pieces.
Optionally, white sesame seeds can be added at this time.
When the jaggery syrup thickens, add a drop of the syrup to a cup of water.
If you are able to roll a tender ball out of thick syrup, which is soft as well,
   switch off the gas.
Add the powdered cardamom now.
Quickly start adding the prepared rice flour and keep on mixing without stop.
After mixing, you will find a thick ball of dough, which can be mixed like
   an atta flour with your palm.
This dough can be used to make adirasam immediately or the next day.
For making adirasam, heat the ghee in a kadai.
Take a lemon-sized ball of the dough and roll it.
Flatten the dough in a plastic sheet, which is brushed with ghee to a circle  
   of 6 cm diameter.
When the ghee is warm enough, gently lift the flattened dough and slip
    it into the ghee.
Adirasam rises up and now turn it to the other side gently with a spatula.
When it becomes pinkish brown and crisp remove it from the ghee.
Drain it thoroughly in a kitchen tissue and press with the spatula to
   remove excess ghee.
Adirasam is usually made one or two at a time in medium heat.
Once the drained adirasams have cooled down, they become soft.
Now store them in airtight containers.

Badusha by Mrs. Lakshmi Shankar

Badusha can be rendered as the king of sweets as the name itself depicts. It requires lot of patience to prepare this sugary sweet. Usually you look for the layer and softness which gives badusha the ideal texture. Badushas can be stored for about 10 days in an airtight container. Try out this sweet which will top your list of sweets during any festive occasion.

Ingredients

 Maida - 31/2 cups
 Sugar - 7 cups
 Ghee - 1 cup
 Fresh curd - 3 tbsp
 Salt - 1/4 tsp
 Soda bi carb - 1/2 tsp
 Saffron (soaked in warm milk) - 1/2 tsp
 Elaichi powder - 1 tsp
 Milk - 1 tbsp
 Ghee (for deep frying) - 3 cups

Garnishing

 Grated dry coconut - 1 cup
 Food colour - as required
 Almonds or Pistas - 1/4 cup

Preparation

 Sieve maida, salt and soda bi carb together in a bowl.
 Mix well till they resemble bread crumbs.
 Mix in curd and 1 cup ghee.
 Mix well and keep it aside for half an hour.
 You can sprinkle water if required to make it to a stiff dough.
 Make lemon sized balls and ensure there are no cracks in the ball.
 Flatten them a little and press in the centre a bit.
 Keep them aside.

Preparation of sugar syrup

 Prepare a thick sugar syrup by adding sugar to 4 cups of water.
 Remove dirt from the sugar by adding milk which will float on top.
 As you lift the syrup with a ladle and pour it down it should leave a thick trail.
 The thick sugar syrup is ready now.
 Add saffron, elaichi powder and keep aside.

Preparation of badushas

 Heat ghee in a kadai in medium flame.
 Add the flattened badushas to the ghee about five at a time.
 Badushas will rise up.
 Turn them to the other side and fry till they attain golden colour.
 Strain them to remove excess ghee.
 Now add the badushas to the sugar syrup and let them soak for about 5 minutes.
 The soaked badushas can be taken out gently and placed in a serving plate.
 Meanwhile fry the other badushas and add them to the syrup.
 Repeat with the rest of the badushas and the remaining syrup.
 Add desired food colour to the grated coconut.
 Garnish the badushas with finely cut pistas or almonds and coconut.

Ashoka by Mrs. Lakshmi Shankar

Ashoka is a sweet made from moongdal which is otherwise known as moongdal halwa too. The taste is unique and the sweet can be stored for about a week.

Ingredients

Whole green moongdal - 1 cup
 Sugar - - 3 cups
 Ghee - 1 cup
 Cardamom powder - ½ tsp
 Milk - 2 cups
 Water - 2 cups
 Maida - 11/2 tbsps
 Cashewnuts fried in ghee - ½ cup

Preparation

Fry the maida to golden brown colour and keep aside.
 Wash and soak the moongdal in 2 cups of water for half an hour.
 Pressure cook the dal in 2 cups of milk alongwith the soaked water till it is done.
 Cool the dal and mash it thoroughly with a ladle and keep aside.
 In a heavy bottomed pan, add the sugar with 2 cups of water.
 Boil the sugar syrup and remove the scum, which floats on top.
 Make a thick syrup which is sticky when you touch with your fingers and
   leaves a trail of two lines when poured.
Add the mashed dal mix and keep mixing.
Add the ghee periodically while mixing for about 20-25 minutes.
The dal mix thickens without sticking on to the base of the vessel.
Brush ghee in a tray and keep it ready.
Add the fried maida and cashew nuts to the dal mixture in the stove.
Mix for about 2-3 minutes.
Pour the done ashoka on the plate.
You can garnish the ashoka with cashewnuts now.
Cool it for 10 minutes and make pieces of your desired shape.
Ashoka can be had like halwa too without making pieces.

Injinjeeram or Diwali Marundu by Mrs. Lakshmi Shankar

This is very good for stomach upsets or ailments which often occur during this festive season due to consumption of large amounts of oily and sweet items. This should be had about half tablespoonful preferably in empty stomach in the morning.

Ingredients

Ginger - 100gm
Jaggery - 150gm
Ghee - 50gm
Jeera - 25gm
Coriander seeds - 25gm

Method:

Wash, clean and peel the ginger which is fresh without fibre and cut into small pieces.
Soak the coriander seeds and jeera in water for about half an hour.
Grind the ginger and soaked coriander seeds to a fine paste.
Now add the powdered jaggery.
In a kadai, put the ground mixture and cook by mixing continuously.
When the mixture becomes thicker add ghee and cook it.
When the ghee starts coming out you can stop cooking.
You can preserve it for one week in a dry container.

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