When we were younger we were told this joke about how an Indian went to the USA and asked around if they knew where he could find some fast food. O course he was given directions for the nearest McDonalds. He did not know what this McDonalds deal was so he went there and checked out the menu and was surprised to see it didn’t feature any food he could eat when he was “fasting”.
(A bit of context in parenthesis…
Today is Mahashivratri. It is the annual celebration of the union between the ultimate male, Shiva, and the female, Shakti. They are the symbols of the universal energy, male and its driving force, the female. Although not for religious reasons but for poetic, I find these symbols great. In fact, Shiva may well be a pre-Indus valley civilisation deity, he was found on a seal performing a tough yogic posture, which makes him the oldest yogi.)
So the reason why I am telling this joke today is because this day is observed as a day of fasting technically, but instead of not eating at all, we just decided on an alternate menu we can fill ourselves up with. And it’s delicious! Here are a few of those things…
Sago Khichadi and Shengadana Laddoo are a food pairing that go well together. Both the recipes are easy to make and delicious.
Sabudana or sago is traditionally made as a fasting recipe. But it is so yummy that you can eat it anytime you want.
Sago 1/4 kilo or 2 cups
Roasted Peanut powder
Oil 1 cup
Soak the sago in water for 4-5 hours. Let the water level be a little above the sago such that the sago gets swollen but not soggy.
In a wok pour the oil, add the cumin seeds, when they temper add the chillies. Pour the sago and mix it with a spatula quickly as the sago tends to get stuck to the vessel. Add the peanut powder, add the salt and mix again.
You can add lemon juice or fresh coriander if you like.
Serve hot and if you like with curds.
When my daughter was 3-4 years old we used to give this laddoo to her everytime she asked for a “Felleloo” – Ferrero Rocher chocolate. No, seriously this crunchy laddoo is something just as tasty but healthy too.
This peanut laddoo is traditionally given to pregnant women in India, and why not because it so rich in iron. But it is a good recipe to try because it is so easy to make and it tastes so yummm!!!
Half a kilo of peanuts
1/4 kilo of jaggery
4-5 tsp of ghee or clarified butter
Roast the peanut well.Keep stirring them so that they don’t get burned on some sides. Let it cool. Once it is dry, you can remove the skin but it is better if you keep it because it is supposed to be healthy. Then run it in a blender till you get a fine powder, but don’t blend it till it has lumps.
Cut the jaggery. It won’t exactly cut but it will become soft and will easily melt. If you have used jaggery to make peanut brittles, that jaggery hardens a bit too much. For the laddoo you will need the kind of jaggery that will break out from the lump if you try to break with your fingers.
In a large kadhai, pour 4-5 tsps of ghee, let it melt on low heat. Then add the jaggery. Stir the jaggery continuously so that it doesn’t burn.
Once the jaggery has completely melted with the ghee.
TIP: Sprinkle a bit of water here. It helps in keeping the laddoo batter from turning hard.
Switch of the stove and add the peanut powder and mix it with a spatula.
Switch on the gas again and mix again for a minute or so.
Apply some ghee to your palms. Let the mix cool for a while and roll the laddoos by first pressing the dough in your fist and then by rolling them into a round shape of about the size of a lemon.
This is a recipe that kids will love as well.