Ladoos are made thoughout in India at home and also readily available in sweet shops. The round shaped sweet is called ladoo and there are many varieties of ladoo. Different types of ladoos are made depending on occasion and festival. This sweet is favorite of children. It can be eaten as a snack or with a meal as a sweet.
During month of August or September (on the fourth day of Bhadarva Sud in Hindu calendar) comes Ganesh Chaturthi. This year it was on September 2, 2019. Ganesh is the elephant-headed god of wisdom. The festival of Ganesh lasts for 10 days. His favorite food, ladoos, are made and offered to him as prasad. In the region of Maharashtra, special steamed ladoos called modaks are made with rice flour, coconut and jaggery. In Gujarat, ladoos are made with whole wheat flour and jaggery.
Many Indians keep fast during certain days. Sometimes on a day of fast, some people avoid eating regular meals or will eat only one meal and avoid eating food with salt after a meal. On those days to keep strength people may eat fruits, dry fruits and nuts. Whenever my mother had a fast, she used to make shing (peanuts) na ladoos on that day. These peanuts ladoos are quick and easy to make. The recipe can be adapted for other nuts.
- 2 cups ladoo (coarse whole wheat) flour, available in Indian grocery stores.
- 1 tablespoon chickpea flour
- 4 tablespoons canola oil
- ½ cup or more warm water
- 1 cup sugar or more or 1 ½ cups jaggery or more shredded with knife
- 1 cup ghee (clarified butter) or more, melted and warm
- 1 ½ teaspoons ground cardamom
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 2 tablespoons toasted almonds, finely chopped
- ¼ cup white poppy seeds, for garnish
- Vegetable oil for frying
- Combine wheat flour, chickpea flour and canola oil in a large mixing bowl. Gradually add water and form into firm dough. Use more water if needed. Knead the dough until smooth. Divide the dough into 14 to 15 equal parts and form into balls. Take one ball into palm of your hand and make a fist with ball. Tightly press the dough with your hand and make oval shaped dough (muthia). Repeat with rest of the dough balls.
- Heat oil in a frying pan until hot enough to fry. Fry the muthia, 4 to 5 at a time until golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer the muthia to a paper towel lined large mixing bowl to drain excess oil. Once all muthia are fried, remove the paper towel. Cover the bowl with a plate and let muthia cool down for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Break muthia into smaller pieces with your hands or with a wooden spoon. In a food processor, process small pieces until it resembles wet sand in 3 to 4 batches. Transfer to a big mixing bowl.
- Add sugar (skip if you are using jaggery), almonds, cardamom and nutmeg and mix well. Taste ladoo mixture and add more sugar if it is not sweet enough. Make a well in the center and add ¾ cup of ghee. If you are using jaggery, add jaggery in the ghee. With warm ghee, jaggery pieces will start to melt. With hands combine ladoo mixture with jaggery and ghee. Break unmelted pieces of jaggery with hand while mixing and taste ladoo mixture. Add more jaggery if it is not sweet enough.
- Take handful of mixture into hand and try to form a ball. If mixture does not stay together then add more ghee until the mixture stays firmly together. With a small ice cream scoop, scoop ladoo mixture and press firmly. Drop it on a plate and form a tight ball (ladoo) with your hands. Repeat the process until all mixture is used.
- In a pie dish or a small baking pan spread out poppy seeds. Drop a ladoo on poppy seeds and roll it gently between hands to evenly coat poppy seeds. Transfer to a serving plate. Repeat with remaining ladoo. Let ladoo stand for at least two hours to solidify ghee. It is served as a sweet on special occasions. (makes about 24 ladoo)
- 1 cup dry roasted shing (peanuts)
- ⅓ cup powdered sugar
- 3 tablespoons ginger powder
- ¼ cup or more ghee (clarified butter), melted
- ½ teaspoon cardamom
- Ground peanuts in food processor until like a wet sand. Transfer to a mixing bowl.
- Add rest of ingredients to ground peanuts. Combine them with your hands. Take handful of mixture into hand and try to form a ball. If mixture does not stay together, add more ghee until the mixture stays firmly together. With a small ice cream scoop, scoop mixture and press firmly. Drop it on your hand and form a tight ball (ladoo) with your hands. Roll between your hands to make it smooth. Repeat the process until all mixture is used.
- Serve as a snack or sweet.