Drool over jaggery

Here are a few more delights prepared with jaggery.

Sweet pongal

You will need: A cup of raw rice, a cup of pounded jaggery, a pod of cardamom, a cup of thick coconut milk (the first extract, if prepared at home), 2 tbsp of ghee, a few cashewnuts, raisins and chopped badam slivers.

Method: Boil the rice in a cooker with two cups of water. Heat about ¾ cup of water, allow the jaggery to melt. Strain the syrup using a piece of thin cotton cloth. Add this syrup to the boiled rice and mix well. See that the rice doesn’t get lumpy. Heat this mixture till all the rice is coated well with the syrup. At this stage, pour in the coconut milk and stir well to avoid burning. Bring the pongal to a boil. Sprinkle cardamom powder. Remove from fire, when the pongal is thick and not too runny. Fry cashewnuts, raisins and badam slivers in ghee and pour it on the prepared pongal. Serve hot or cold.

Adirasam/ Kajjaya

You will need: ½  kilo of raw rice, about ¼ cup of water, ½  kilo of jaggery, 2 tbsp of  white sesame seeds, oil for frying.

Method: Wash and soak the rice for about 4-5 hours. Drain the water and spread the rice on a thin dry cloth for about half an hour. Powder the rice in a mixie. Sieve the flour and use only the fine powder. Note that the flour has to be slightly damp; otherwise the kajjayas will become too hard when fried.

Heat the powdered jaggery with ¼ cup of water on a low flame till the syrup is thick.  Now, add the rice flour little by little, stirring continuously. Make sure there are no lumps. Dry roast the sesame seeds and sprinkle them on the prepared dough. Remove from heat. When the dough is slightly cool, grease your palms with a little oil and make lemon-sized balls. Pat them into flat round discs on butter paper or a banana leaf. Fry them in hot oil on a medium flame till they are browned on both sides.

Tip: A pinch of dry ginger powder can be added to dough for a nice flavour.

Til laddoos

You will need: Black sesame seeds/ til – 250 gms, powdered jaggery – 250 gms, cardamom powder – a pinch, ghee – 1 tsp, a few pieces of cashewnuts for garnishing.

Method: Dry roast sesame seeds on low flame. As they begin to splutter remove from heat and let cool. When cool, transfer sesame seeds to a mixie, add powdered jaggery. Run the mixie till you find both the ingredients blended well and you have a coarse sticky powder. Remove the mixture into a plate, sprinkle cardamom powder. Grease your palms with a little ghee and make lemon-sized balls with the mixture. Garnish with cashewnuts pieces.

Crispy jaggery squares

You will need: Whole wheat flour – 1 cup, jaggery – a little less than a cup made into a thin syrup using ¼ cup of water, cardamom powder – a pinch, oil for frying.

Method: Heat the jaggery syrup, keep adding little quantities of wheat flour till it forms a dough as for rotis. Sprinkle cardamom powder. Sprinkle a little water if the dough becomes hard. Roll out into chapathis. Cut into squares or any shape you desire. Fry in hot oil on medium flame till golden brown. Crispy jaggery squares can be served as a snack for tea.

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