Hope everyone had a happy and joyous Diwali!
Diwali is the festival of lights and joys, of great food and fun times with the people you love! Diwali is also the time when, having stayed away from India for so long, we miss our parents and relatives the most...
We have been fortunate to have plenty of friends around to share the festivities with on most years and this year too we celebrated Diwali with some good friends here in Rotterdam. We had the traditional Laxmi pujan, lit up lots of candles, played cards and shared lots of laughs during dumb charades and of course had a wonderful potluck dinner of Dal bukhara, Shahi Gobhi, Chane-Aloo, Naan and Gulab Jamuns! I don't have any pictures of the food unfortunately.. we were all too busy eating and forgot to take any pictures! :)
Besides an elaborate dinner, usually I make besan laddoos for Diwali. This year I didn't have much besan left.. but had Nachani / Ragi flour which my mom had got in the summer. so I made Ragi laddoos this time..
I made them just as I make Aate ke Laddoos. This flour was already roasted..so I didn't even need to roast it for long! Just combined with hot ghee, boora and dried fruits and made some mouth-watering laddoos!
For prasad, I made Sooji ka Halwa with banana in it (called Kelicha sheera in Marathi). I found a great recipe here which I used as is with the only exception of using ripe Banana instead of mango pulp. Turned out so much better than plain sooji ka halwa! :)
Here's the recipe for quick reference
1 ½ cups Sooji/Rava/Semolina (medium coarse)
1 ½ cups Milk
1 ½ cups water
1 ripe Banana sliced
1 cup sugar
2 tbsp homemade Ghee
For the garnishing:
6-7 Cashewnuts chopped
6-7 golden raisins
Few strands of Saffron, soaked in warm milk
1. In a heavy bottom Kadai/wok heat 2tsp of the ghee. Fry the cashew nut pieces and raisins in it, drain and keep aside.
2. In the same ghee, roast the sooji till it turns golden brown and you get a nice aroma. Remove in a plate and cool.
3. In the same Kadai mix milk and water and bring to a boil. Add the roasted sooji and cook stirring continuously so that no lumps are formed. Cook on low flame for some time stirring in between.
4. Once the sooji is half cooked add sugar. Mix properly and cook for a few minutes more, stirring in between.
5. Now add the banana slices and mix with the halwa, mashing them slightly.
6. Add the remaining ghee (optional) and the saffron strands dissolved in warm milk. Mix properly. Cover and cook for a 1-2 minutes.
Garnish with the fried Cashew pieces and golden raisins. Delicious halwa is ready!
I also made some Quick bhadang this diwali! I used Nupur's recipe with some modifications and the result was a wonderful, delicious, crunchy snack.
Here's the recipe, again repeated here for my own reference..
6 cups puffed rice
4 tbsp oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
1/2 cup peanuts
8-10 curry leaves
1/4 cup raisins
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp red chilli powder
1-2 green chillies chopped
1. Heat oil in a large pot. Add mustard seeds and let them pop.
2. Add peanuts, chopped green chillies, curry leaves and saute till the peanuts are nicely browned.
3. Add salt, sugar, turmeric and chilli powder and saute for a few seconds.
4. Add the puffed rice and raisins and saute on low-medium heat, stirring often till all the puffed rice is coated. Turn off heat after 3-5 minutes.
Cool and store in an air-tight container.
These entries go to Srivalli's JFI-Festival Treats
Also sending this to Priti's Festive Food -Diwali event