Ganesha loves food and indulging in mouth-watering dishes, so do his devotees. With Ganeshostava starting today, we will completely immerse ourselves in the festivities and feasting. While it is a known fact that Lord Ganesha loves Laddoos and Modaks, families who celebrate the festival at home, make a variety of food items as offerings. From Puranpoli — a sweetbread made from maida (white flour) with a filling that includes chana dal, jaggery, cardamom powder and lots of ghee, to Shrikhand made from hung curd, sugar, cardamom, Kothimbir Vadi (coriander fritters) made from chickpea flour batter mixed with coriander and spices steamed first and cut into wedges and then fried, Sabudana Vada — a traditional prasad and several other delicacies are prepared during the 10-day festivities.
Shrunkhala Sharma, winner of Pune Super Chef 2016 and owner of Treat Away — a snack centre, says that there is an array of options to choose from when it comes to making snacks without onion and garlic.
Sharma says that right from Karanji to steamed and fried Modak, dry fruits Modak and a number of Farals are a speciality of Ganeshotsav.
“You can make Chaklis, different types of Shev and Gathiya too. In salads from Koshimbir to Fruit Salad and Pancharamrita — a salad with five elements, can be prepared as prasad,” says Sharma who makes Poha in three varities — regular Savoury Poha, Sweet Poha made with coconut and jaggery, and Poha with Yoghurt with phorni which is similar to Curd Rice. “However, Lapsi Rava Upma or Khichdi are some of the healthiest options. This hardly takes time and can be eaten as both breakfast and evening snack. The dish doesn’t require onion or garlic and is good for weight loss and diabetics too. It can be relished with coconut chutney,” suggests Sharma.
Chef Kamlesh Rawat, executive chef, Grand Sarovar Premiere, Goregaon, Mumbai, says besides the traditional dishes, Apricot Halwa or Makhane Ki Kheer are also great ways to enjoy the festival.
Makhane Ki Kheer
Organic milk... 500 ml
Makhana or fox nuts.... 1 cup
Green cardamom (powdered)... 2-3
Almonds (sliced).. .10-12
Cashews (sliced). ..10-12
Water.. .1 cup
Sugar as required
A pinch of saffron
- Heat milk and when the milk comes to a boil, add makhana and simmer the milk with occasional stirring on a low to medium flame.
- After five minutes add the sugar, cardamom and a pinch of saffron.
- When the kheer is simmering, add sliced almonds to the hot water and keep aside for 8-10 minutes. Now drain and peel them.
- Slice the almonds and chop the cashews. Simmer the milk for 12-15 minutes on a low to medium flame with occasional stirring.
- To get a slightly thick consistency, you can simmer for some more minutes. However, keep on stirring.
- Lastly add almonds and cashews. Switch off the flame.
- Garnish with dry fruits, saffron strands and serve the Makhana Ki Kheer hot or cold.
(Recipe by Kamlesh Rawat)
Lapsi Rawa Upma/Khichdi
Wheat rava... 3 cups
Carrot (diced).. .1
Potato (diced).. .1
Coconut (1&1/2 inch thinly sliced).. .1/4 cup
Green chilli (finely chopped)... 1
Mustard seeds... 1 tbsp
Bengal gram... 1 tbsp
Urad dal.. .1 tbsp
Curry leaves. ..1 sprig
Ginger (finely chopped).. .2 tbsp
Coriander leaves (finely chopped)... 2 tbsp
Lemon juice... .1/2 tbsp
Salt to taste
Water.. ..4 1/2 cups
Oil... .3 tbsp
- Dry roast wheat rava.
- Heat pressure cooker, then add oil. Put mustard seeds. Once they crackle add Bengal gram, urad dal and sauté gently.
- Now add ginger, green chilli, curry leaves followed by chopped carrot, potatoes and coconut and sauté well.
- Add water and salt and mix well. Once the water starts boiling add wheat rava and mix well. Cover it and cook till one whistle.
- Then add lemon juice and coriander leaves, mix well and serve hot with coconut chutney.
(Recipe by Shrunkhala Sharma)