CELEBRATING THE FESTIVITIES (DIWALI)

Diwali “The Festival Of Lights” is celebrated by different religious groups in India.Iit lasts for five days. Each day receives name given, as per mentioned in the Hindu calendar. It is usual to hold a meal of savory and  sweet dishes as well as enjoying the spectacles of fireworks and lights everywhere.  The Hindus light Diyas which indicate a personal victory of good over evil and return to faith.

There are no set dishes for diwali except for the namkeens and sweets which are usually made in households.

Some of the Traditional  Diwali dishes are: 

1)Besan laddoo

This popular mithai is known by various names.  This deliciously spiced and sweetened besan ball is famous all over the country. The rich flavor of the laddoo depends on how well the besan is cooked.

2)Suji halwa

Also known as Rava sheera is prepared with almonds and milk.it’s mellow and aromatic taste is not the only thing that makes it best.

3)Shakkar para

A tea – time snack, Shakkar para is the joy of amateurs.There are several methods to make this mildly- sweet snack.

4)Gujiya

Also known as Karanji, these sweet fried dumplings are stuffed with coconut and sugar or mawa.

5)Mathri (namkeen)

Indian savory crackers which are basically fried flaky biscuits are made in various ways. A lot of innovations can be carried out to give a twist to this traditional delicacy.

6)Kaju katli

An all time favorite mithai, Kaju kati is prepared with cashew nuts soaked in water for a considerable period of time and mixing other ingredients to form a bite size diamond sweet.

7)Shahi tukda

Also known as double ka meetha, Shahi tukda is a bread pudding dessert of fried bread slices soaked in hot milk with spices.

8)Gulab jamun

Gulab means ‘rose’and jamun means ‘berry’. These berry sized balls dunked in rose flavored syrup, are the most appetizing and enjoyed sweets in Diwali.

Kala jamun is a variant of Gulab jamun which is black and beautiful as you will see when a regular gulab jamun is fried until fierce black.

9)Khara sev

A simple and spicy snack which is served during tea- time.Made with gram flour, rice flour and a hint of cumin and carom seeds.

10)Chiwda

Chiwda or namkeen is a fried savory, sweet or sicy mixture of flattened rice, dry fruits and a few spices.

 

Let’s give some twist to the traditional dishes

  1. Twitch the Halwa- why not mix some pineapple pure` to the halwa or delight the dish by adding the unusual  combination of apples and almonds
  2. Make the cake – Be creative with the cheesecake, add barfi, motichoor laddoo, gulab jamun, rasgulla or rasmalai and tickle your taste bud.
  3. Gujiya ka goolmaal – tradiionally, a gujiya is stuffed with dry fruits and mawa, why not stuff it with a combination of chocolate and dried coconut or chocolate with dried fruits.                                                                                                                  Like chaat? Make your gujiya like a chaat, stuff it with the traditional filling and garnish them with youghurt,minty coriander chutney, tamarind chutney and cumin powder.

 

 

RECIPE TIME!!

**Gujiya**

-Ingredients

  • For the stuffing
  1. 350 gms. freshly grated coconut
  2. 200 gms sugar
  3. 4-5 gms  cardamom powder.

 

  • For the covering
  1. 200 gms all purpose flour
  2. 50 gms ghee
  3. 50 ml milk + for sealing
  4. oil for frying

 

-Method

  •  For the suffing
  1. Heat a pan, add the coconut and sugar and sautè on a slow flame till the sugar is melted, taking care that the mixture does not become too dry.
  2.  Remove from flame and all cardamom powder, mix well. Cool.
  3. Divide the mixture into equal parts and keep aside.
  • For the covering
  1. Take the flour in a bowl and add the hot ghee over the flour
  2. Add milk and kneed into a smooth and soft dough.
  3. Cover with a wet muslin cloth and keep aside for 30 minutes. Kneed again to make the dough more soft.
  • How to proceed
  1. Divide the dough into equal portions and roll out each portion into a circle of 4″diameter.
  2. Place the filling in the center of each rolled out puri and fold the circle into a half moon shape.
  3. Apply a little water or milk on the edges and seal it.
  4. Remove the excess from the sides with the help of a knife or a cutter.
  5. Cover it with a moist cloth for 5 minutes.
  6. Heat oil in a heavy base pan and deep fry the gujiya on medium heat until it turns golden brown.
  7. Drain on an absorbent paper.
  8. Cool and serve.

Diwali signifies the triumph of good over evil, light over darkness and truth over falsities. I hope this festival of lights brings truth, prosperity, wisdom and peace in your life.