Quick and Simple Basundi

My husband just loves Basundi. People used to tell me it is difficult to make. Even my mom has not tried making it. Someone told me this simple recipe for what I think is one of the most delicious creation by human beings. There is a lot of effort but the procedure is simple.

Ingredients –

  • 1 litre full fat milk
  • 2 cups sugar
  • dry fruits (optional)
  • Kesar optional

How to make –

  1. Pour milk (1 litre full fat milk) in a thick bottomed sauce pan or kadai.
  2. Keep stirring on low flame and stir till it thickens
  3. Once it thickens slightly add sugar and keep stirring.
  4. You will have to stir often so that it does not stick to the bottom. Milk also has a tendency to turn brown or burn.
  5. Let it thicken. There will be milk solid stuck to the vessels. Scrape it and put it back in the basundi mixture.
  6. Add dry fruits if you wish. I like it plain.

Honestly, I got a little tired of the stirring, so don’t go by the picture. But it had a homely taste to it, so it was lovely anyway. For correct reference of how it should look. refer some pictures on the internet.

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Fried Modaks

On the occasion of Ganesh Chaturthi I made some delicious fried modaks. They did not turn out as good as my mom would make but it was not bad for first timer. Check out this simple recipe.

Ingredients 
for the outer covering or shell:
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour or maida (multi-purpose flour) or half and half both
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 2 tsp warm oil
  • water to knead the dough
for the inner filling:
  • 1.5 cups grated or powdered jaggery
  • 1.5 cups fresh grated fresh coconut or unsweetened dessicated coconut
  • 1 or 2 tbsp roasted sesame seeds (optional)
  • 1 or 1.5 tsp cardamom powder or crushed cardamom
  • a pinch or two of grated nutmeg (optional)

Method:

preparing the covering
  1. with the ingredients mentioned for the outer covering, make a smooth dough.
  2. cover and keep the dough aside for 20-30 minutes.
preparing the filling:
  1. mix all the filling ingredients.
  2. cook and stir on a low or medium flame till the mixture is dry and cooked.
  3. keep aside to cool.
preparing & shaping the modaks:
  1. take a small ball from the dough.
  2. roll thinly in to a circle of about 3-4 inches diameter.
  3. gently take this circle on your palm.
  4. now add the filling in the center.
  5. pinch the edges one by one. pinch at least five edges.
  6. bring together all the pinched folds in the center.
  7. deep fry the modaks in medium hot oil or ghee till golden browned.
  8. drain on kitchen tissues.

 Image Source: spiceupthecurry.com

Patoli – GSB Nagpanchmi Special

This seemed difficult when I started but then everything fell in place. Just a small background. This sweet dish usually is prepared during Ganesh Festival or Nagpanchmi. 

Serves
8-10
 
Ingredients: 

Haldi leaves – # 8 (or Banana leaves if haldi leaves are not available)
Maida or Rice flour 1/4 kg. (Do not get ready made flour. Grind it yourself in the mixer.)
Descicated Coconut powder 150 gms or one Bowl.
Jaggery – same amount as of descicated coconut.
Ilayachi -3 pods. (crushed)
Salt as per Taste (A pinch is enough)

Instructions: 

1. Make a batter of flour. Remember to add a little grated coconut to the flour while grinding Consistency is of bhajiya batter. Add salt to taste. 
2. Mix coconut powder, Jaggery and Ilayachi together to blend well.
3. Cut Haldi leaves in 2 to 3 pieces horizontally depending on the size of Patolis needed.
4. Apply thin layer of ghee on the back side (rough side) of the cut leaves.
Preparation: Take a piece of cut haldi leaf. Spread the Maida batter evenly, through out, on the ghee side making a 1/4 inch layer. Put 1 table spoon of prepared jaggery mixture and fold the leaf.
Repeat this preparation process to all remaining leaves and steam them like Idlis.
(If Banana leaves are used, if possible add small piece of Haldi leaf for flavor in the spread batter before cooking.)

Sweet Stuff – Gajar Ka Halwa

Let us jump to the method directly. The reason is that for this dish, the quantity of the ingredients is subjective. You have to set your own measurements.

Method:

Rinse, peel and then grate the carrots, either with a hand held grater or in a food processor.

In a kadai (bowl-shaped frying pan), add all of the grated carrots.

Pour milk in it.

Stir the grated carrots and milk and keep the kadai on the stove top.

Cook this mixture on a low to medium flame. The milk will froth and start reducing slowly and slowly.

Keep on stirring this halwa mixture often. keep scraping the sides of the kadai to remove the evaporated milk solids. add the milk solids to the cooking mixture.

The mixture should reduce by 75% and then you add the ghee/clarified butter. some milk will be there when you add the ghee. 

Next add the sugar.

Add the cardamom powder.

Stir and continue to simmer on a low flame till the mixture starts to thicken and reduce more. stir at intervals.

When the halwa has reduced much and you see a little milk – like that of a pudding consistency. then add the cashews, saffron and golden raisins.

Continue to stir and simmer till the whole mixture becomes dry. the milk should evaporate completely and you will see fine milk solids in the halwa. remember to scrape the milk solids stuck at the sides of the kadai or pan and add them to the halwa. some moisture is also fine in the halwa.

How to make Sheera?

So it was not the best tasting sheera I have eaten but it wasn’t as bad. The very thing that was wrong with it was that I picked up a wrong vessel. But this is how you learn no? I learned that one should cook in a non-stick kadai. Anyway, since it turned out well here’s the recipe.

This is what we need

  • 1 cup semolina (rava)
  • 1 cup pure ghee
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup raisins (kismis) and cashewnuts (kaju), almonds (badam)
  • 1/2 gm saffron (kesar) strands (optional)
  • 10 gms cardamom (elaichi) powder

 

Let’s begin

Fry rawa in ghee on medium flame till it turns reddish.
Boil milk and water and then add to the rawa.
Keep stirring continuously. When the mixture turns semi solid add sugar. You may add sugar in milk as well. It will dissolve in hot milk.
Place a lid and let it cook for two to three minutes on low flame.
Remove and add elaichi powder. Dissolve saffron in milk  and add to the rawa. (optional)
Sprinkle elaichi powder and garnish with raisins and almonds or cashewnuts.