Rave Unde or Rava ladoo

Post pregnancy period. That’s what I’m going through now. In my postpartum period, I’m getting to spend a lot of time with my dearest granny. This seems like the best time to learn from her, to cook her way… the yummy way. There is going to be quite a few recipes that I want to learn and share here. Since it is beginning of my learning my granny’s style, let’s start with something sweet. Here it is… Rave Unde.

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Ingredients

1 cup Rava, the fine variety or chiroti rava
1 cup Sugar ( Reduce it slightly if you don’t like it too sweet)
1/4 tsp elachi or cardamom powder
2 tbsp grated dry coconut
cashews and raisins as much as you want
and of course! GHEE.

Let’s get started

Take one cup of sugar in a bowl and add water to it so it just covers the sugar.
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Now, heat a kadai. Add 1/2 tsp of ghee. As it melts, add the cashews and roast them. When cashews are almost done, add the raisins. Then add the dry coconut, roast till they turn light brown and take it off the heat. Move it to a separate bowl. Add the elachi powder on it.
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Put the same kadai back on heat, now add generous amount of ghee, say about 3 tsp. As it melts, add the rava and fry it till light brown in color. Remove it off heat and move it to a plate. Don’t spread it, just dump it. Put the dry fruits and elachi powder on the rava.
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Now, put Mr. Kadai back on the heat. To the kadai, add the sugar-water that we had placed in a bowl. Keep it on a low heat and keep stirring till you get a sugar syrup with thin thread consistency. To check thin thread consistency, just dip the ladle in the syrup and remove it to your face level. If you notice a thin thread formation when the syrup drops down, bingo! you got it.
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Once you get the required consistency, remove it off the heat but continue stirring. You need to continue stirring so that sugar syrup does not thicken too much. Keep checking the consistency, once it cools slightly, you will get a thicker consistency than the one you had when you removed it off the heat.
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At this point, add the rava to the sugar syrup and mix well. Then spread mixture on a plate. At this point, the mixture might seems watery. It is fine, just go ahead. Grease your hand with ghee or milk, make small balls. You need to make the balls while the mixture is still warm.
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Let the dumplings or balls cool for 10-15 mins. As it cools, the unde or ladoo hardens. Now, sit back and enjoy the goodness in form of rava unde!
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Ugadi

Warm wishes for a very Happy Ugadi to you.

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I made a sumptuous lunch on the occasion of Ugadi. Here is all that I made…

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And of course

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I’m going to share the recipe of all these dishes, starting with Bele Holige.

Ingredients
1.5 cup Maida
1.5 cup Chiroti Rawa ( super fine sooji rawa)
A pinch of salt
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
Lots of oil

Rice flour for dusting

For the filling
2 cups Toor dal
1/2 cup grated coconut
2 cups tightly filled powdered jaggery
A pinch of cardamom powder

And a baking sheet

Now begins the process…
The process consists of three steps –
1. Preparing the outer covering, called kanka
2. Preparing the filling, hoorna
3. Getting the kanka and hoorna together

Let’s begin with kanka. In a mixing bowl, take the maida, rawa, turmeric powder and salt.
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Make a dough of chapatti consistency by adding water.
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Once the dough is ready, add water so that the dough is soaked in it. Keep the dough soaked in water for 2-3 hours.
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After 2-3 hours, pour out the water. Knead the dough well. Say for about 5 mins. Then add 1/2 cup of oil and knead it again.
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The dough will absorb all the oil. Again add about 1/4 cup of oil and keep kneading till the oil is completely absorbed. Then soak the dough in oil.
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Keep it covered till used. Now Mr. kanka is ready!

Next, Hoorna. Wash the toor dal and pressure cook it with sufficient water. Dal should not be overcooked. After pressure cooking if you have excess of water left, put the dal through colander and save the water for rasam. My dal cooked just right. No excess water.
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In a mixer jar, add coconut and grind it into powder. Now, add in the jaggery and grind it again. To this add the dal and grind again to get smooooth paste.
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Heat a heavy bottomed pan and the dal paste. Keep stirring until it leaves the sides of the pan and becomes like halwa. Let it cool.
Once cooled, make small balls with the hoorna. Step 2 complete!
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Finale. Take small-sized kanka. Spread it across your left palm using your right hand. Place the hoorna in the middle.
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I could not take a pic of the next step so will try to explain with words. Right now, your left hand it below and your right hand is above it holding the hoorna, just invert it. Your right hand is below holding the hoorna and your left hand above it. Slowly move the kanka with your right thumb so that it forms a covering over the hoorna. Using your left hand try to cover the maximum part of the hoorna by smoothing the kanka. Now invert it back and cover the remaining part of hoorna with the kanka. So now the kanka is completely covering the hoorna and looks like this. And yes, a picture speaks a thousand words!!
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Take the baking sheet. Sprinkle the rice flour on it. Dust the kanka-covered hoorna with the rice flour and place it on the baking sheet. With help of a rolling pin, roll it into a thin chappati.
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Remove the chappati from the baking sheet and place it on the heated tawa. Heat it on the tawa so that each side gets a light brown color. Repeat for the remaining kanka and hoorna.
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Serve the holige with ghee or hot milk. And…. Enjoy!
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Banana halwa

One person I know, who makes the  yummiest banana halwa is my sister-in-law’s mom. Every time she gets it perfect! This halwa happens to be one of my favorites.
This halwa needs special variety of banana which is grown mainly in Kerala called the Nendra banana. There were a few at home which was going from ripe to over ripe. So I thought to try this halwa. After all, all it needs is just 3 ingredients – banana, sugar and ghee. Even if I mess it up, the combination is anyway gonna taste good. So I decided to give it a try. The results, I must say, was certainly not disappointing!! 🙂
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Ingredients
8 ripe nendra banana
1 1/2 cup sugar
2-3 tbsp ghee
And loads of patience

And then…
Peel the banana and mash it. I made a paste of the banana using the blender.
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Take a thick-bottomed, non-stick kadai and place it on the stove. Add the mashed banana. Keep it on low flame.
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After 2-3 mins, add the sugar and keep stirring.
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After the color of banana changes slightly, add the ghee.
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Continue with the stirring. After about 15 mins, it looks like this –
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This dish is one needy fellow, needs your constant attention. So you sure can’t leave the dish alone and you certainly cannot stop stirring. You can take a break of 2 seconds. That’s all.
Slowly, the banana mash will leave the sides. Keep the stirring going.
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The banana mash will form a single lump. Now…. You can stop stirring. Take it off the heat.
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Quickly, grease a plate and spread the halwa on it.
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Let it cool. Cut into pieces and enjoy! If you can’t wait for it to cool, just scrape some remains from the kadai and enjoy! That’s exactly what my daughter and I did. 😉

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Carrot Kheer – for Lord Shiva

Today is Mahashivaratri. On this auspicious occasion, I wanted to prepare a sweet dish to offer to the Lord. I saw the carrots that I had just bought yesterday and remembered preparing this healthy dessert ages ago. It seemed like a perfect sweet dish for the occasion. Here is my carrot kheer served with devotion to the Lord.

Ingredients

6 carrots

4 cups milk

1/2 cup sugar

2 tbsp sweetened condensed milk ( I used Milkmaid)

A pinch of cardamom powder

Few cashews and almonds.

For me, this is how much few means 🙂

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Next…

First chop the carrots roughly. Put them into a cooker.

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Add 2 cups of milk to the carrots.Also add the cashews and almonds. Pressure cook them till they are super soft. I pressure cooked them for 3 whistles.

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Once cooked, you might find excess milk in the cooker. Save this milk separately for later use. Move the carrot, cashew and almonds to the blender/mixie jar and wait till it reaches room temperature.

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Then, make a smooth paste of the carrot, almonds and cashews along with sugar.

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In a separate pan or in the same cooker, add 2 cups of milk, the saved excess milk and milkmaid and bring it to boil.

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Once it boils, add the carrot paste and remove it from heat. Mix the milk and carrot paste slowly till they blend well.

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Add the pinch of cardamom powder(I forgot to add it… Duh!). Mix it once and enjoy the drink!

This drink can be enjoyed hot or chilled!

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Badam puri

My mom is an expert at preparing this sweet. Taking inputs from her and various blogs I arrived at this recipe. I had prepared this to welcome a new member to the family…. my brother’s daughter. 🙂

Now to the recipe. There three main things here – one is the sugar syrup, the filling and the puri. Let’s go step by step.

Ingredients for Sugar syrup

1 1/2 Cup sugar

1 cup Water

Big pinch of Cardamom powder

A pinch of Saffron strands

To prepare sugar syrup….

Dissolve the sugar in water completely. Boil it on low flame till you get thread like consistency. Now, add cardamom powder and saffron and take it off the flame.

Ingredients – Filling

1 tbsp Badam Powder (I used Maiya’s)

1 tbsp Rice Flour

1 tbsp Ghee

What to do with it?

Mix all the ingredients in a bowl and keep it aside.

Ingredients – Badam Puri

1 cup Maida

4 tbsp Ghee

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp Baking Soda

Oil for frying

1/2 cup Desiccated coconut powder(optional)

Finale – 

In a mixing bowl, pour 2 tbsp of ghee. Add salt to this and mix well till salt dissolves. To this add maida and baking soda. Heat the remaining ghee lightly till it melts and pour it over the maida. Adding water little by little to the maida make a dough of poori consistency i.e. slightly hard. Knead it well. Cover it and keep it aside for 15 mins.

Make 3 balls in size of lemon with dough. Roll each like chapati. Place the first chapati on the kitchen counter. Spread the filling prepared on the chapati. Place the second chapati on top of the filling. Spread the filling on the second chapati as well. Place the third chapati and lightly spread the filling on the third one as well. Then, tightly roll the chapatis.

Cut the roll at distance of 1/2 inch. Take a piece and keep it horizontally in front of you. Now, roll it lightly in top to bottom movement. Repeat the process.

In the meanwhile, heat the oil / ghee for frying on low-med flame. Once the oil is heated, add the pieces gently into the oil. Fry them on low flame till light golden color. Take them off oil and drop them into the sugar syrup. Leave them in the sugar syrup for 2-3 mins and put it on a plate. Let it cool. Once cooled it is ready for consumption.

Alternatively, once you take it out of sugar syrup drop into a plate of desiccated coconut so there is a layer of coconut on it. This makes the dish less sweetish and also adds a light coconut flavor.

Serve this yummy dish hot or cooled, either way it tastes awesome!

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