Besan Burfi -Chickpea Flour with walnuts and cashew !Fudge- o – Mania???

Here I was thinking I all but exhausted my list of goodies to be made for Diwali. I mean seriously how many goodies can one indulge in , Right?  Wrong. Apparently there are a few more up my sleeve than what I had originally envisioned. ( I think I am channeling my mom here. )

My first-born sort of wheedled the concoction based on semolina out of me yesterday. ( that post is still sitting in the drafts. I do need to post it up). And my butterfly wanted to know if I would make Mysore -Pak. Seriously this child would eat anything crunchy. She enjoys cucumbers as much as she enjoys  the  crunchy spirals I would make. But this is the one sweet, she can seriously dig into. Traditional Mysore Pak, would call for the need  to indulge in heavy ghee. No sir, no butter or flavorless oil would do. It calls for the simplest ingredients, Besan or Chickpea flour, sugar and ghee.But the last one simply cannot be compromised on.Wary of indulging in such heavy fattening matter , especially since they stick on rather fast and sort of love you so much that they refuse to come off ( Folks, I am referencing the pounds that appear on the scale here ) especially with array of mithai I have in store for the festive season. I already had walnuts in stock, and since I did not use it  my dry fruit and nut fudge thought it would be nice to have some nutritional value in this dessert.

Here’s hoping this will appease her appetite for besan based sweets, this recipe is a marriage of Southern India’s Mysore Pak and Northen India’s Mohanthal and with a host of deliberate variables introduced by yours truly!

Prep time : 15 min              Cook time : 20- 25 min or so.

Setting : 20-30 min              Yield : 36 pieces

Ingredients:

  • Chickpea Flour (Besan) – 2 cups, sifted
  • Cashew nut powdered – 1/2 cup ( optional). I used it because I had left overs from kaju burfi recipe.
  • Unsalted Butter – 10 oz ( 1.25 sticks)
  • Walnuts – 1 cup, chopped finely
  • Cardamom Powder – 1/2 tsp
  • Crushed Saffron strands
  • Non fat-sweetened Condensed Milk – 14 oz can
  • Chopped pistachios for garnishing – optional

Method:

  • In a heavy bottomed non-stick pan, heat the unsalted butter so it melts well and is even in tone and color.
  •  Add in the besan or  Chickpea Flour, mix well and roast on a low flame. This process will get rid of the raw smell of the chickpea flour. The aroma of this will significantly change in 15 minutes or so and it starts smelling heavenly. Please do not skimp on this step. Experience speaks folks ! You will have to deal with  raw besan fudge if you hustle to the next step. Ensure that the besan is roasted to light brown color completely.
  • On low heat setting , go ahead and  add in the Cashew nut powder if using, and then add in the  chopped Walnuts and Cardamom Powder. Make sure this is mixed very well.
  • Now add in the condensed milk and mix until all ingredients are well incorporated.I would say in about 5 min or so, it should be done.
  • Immediately pour mixture onto a greased baking tray. Delay in this process will result in a mass of glop that will be hard to manage.
  • Using a sheet of parchment paper, place it over the fudge and flatten out using the bottom of a steel bowl or a flat ladle.
  • Now add in any garnishing you prefer, like chopped pistachios or halved cashews if desired.
  • Stick this mixture in the refrigerator and let it settle for about 20- 25 minutes
  • Using a greased knife, a pizza cutter or your laser beam  ( just kidding !) cut the fudge or burfi into diamond or square pieces.

Note:

I believe this recipe can be fairly adapted to making it in the microwave. I would recommend this based on my previous experiment with besan ladoos. Just make sure you stir in-between in fairly short intervals and to use a microwave safe bowl.

  • I just powdered raw cashew nuts at room temperature using a high-speed blender in pulse mode. It was done in a matter of minutes. Feel free to omit this in your preparation.
  • Please Note : This is a low-sweet, chewy, crunchy fudge  and equally delicious!!!

Besan Ladoos – Rich, Globes of heaven made in a Jiffy!

Besan ladoos.. Chick pea flour Ladoos,.. A gazillion recipes you can find if you troll the web.. What’s special about this one here?

Well,just that you can be done pretty quick using the microwave  for cooking rather than slaving over the stove ,frying the besan to get the right roast mix.

Again , did I mention, theatrics are part of this family ?  or rather the particular incident that led to delicious ladoos emerging from the kitchen of this queen.

The background:

A3 (my youngest) : “Mommy, if I eat this veggie aka broccoli, can you please make Ladoos?”

Mommy (me) :  ” You know we do not negotiate on the eating of veggies. They are good for you. They build muscles and you can be big and strong like your older brother. Or like daddy” Yada yada yada  and you know how the routine goes… As I expound the virtues of green goodness in ones’s life , I am surreptiously interrupted by ..

A3 : “Yeah , yeah.. but will you still make ladoos?” All of innocence (as much as can be mustered on an impish 4 year old’s face)  he declared “It is your anniversary. I love you mommy ! ”

Okay now, totally suckered by the charm and the demand, I decided to make a real quick ladoos , Besan aka chickpea flour Ladoos 🙂 Goodies are great, but I totally did not feel like slaving away in the kitchen for this delicacy.

Quick Pantry Check List

  1. Besan or Chickpea flour – I used the ladoo flour  – 2 cups
  2. Sugar powdered – 1 cup
  3. Clarified butter – ghee – 4 tablespoons.
  4. Chopped cashew nuts, almonds and walnuts – 1/2 cup
  5. Cardamom powder – a pinch

The procedure….Go on try it .. Its not that hard 🙂  

  1. Heat 4 tablespoons of ghee (clarified butter) in a microwave safe bowl on high for 2 min or so. Yep, you need to get it in the liquid state 🙂 but not the smoking hot one .
  2. Add the 2 cups of flour  to the  the melted ghee and stir in gently. Do note that stirring in gently will avoid lumps .
  3. Microwave it again on high for 3 minutes. Stir in well.and gently break ay lumps.
  4. Microwave it again for 2 minutes. Take it out and  stir again. By now the faint aroma of the besan with ghee would start wafting in your kitchen. Don’t be fooled yet! We are halfway there.
  5. Again microwave it for 5 min .. But this time in intervals of 1 min with stirring.
  6. When I took out the mix after the last interval of stirring, the Besan was nice light brown and my kitchen smelled very heavenly 🙂
  7. I added a pinch of the saffron strands( I know its customary  soak it in warm milk and then add it) but I just added here  along with the cardamom powder  and 1/2 cup of chopped nuts. (Note : I did not fry these nuts in ghee or even toast them)
  8. Microwave it again for 1 min.
  9. Let it stand  for a few seconds and add  1 cup of powdered sugar to this.
  10. Mix it nice and thorough.
  11. Make ladoos or balls out of these .. Now unless you have heat proof hands, it is not wise to dig in immediately. So I say wait about 5 min!
  12. Don’t be shy as you pack these heaps of  mix into ball shapes. I actually noticed it glistening after I made sure they were a nice sphere by adding a few extra rolls in my  hands.
  13. I made about 16 medium sized balls out of these..
  14. Let it stand for a few minutes and indulge 🙂

The fine print:-)

  1. If you use the Ladoo flour from the indian grocery stores, you do get the nice crunchy texture. Say you don’t have it, don’t panic :-). Just add 2 cups  of regular Besan or chickpea flour and a tablespoon of sooji or rava (cream of wheat in coarse form) to get the crutch. I would say add it it to the very final stage of microwaving , just before the saffron and nut goodies get added.
  2. If you get lazy and do not go thorough with the entire process of frying the besan in microwave (the nice light brown color of the besan with aroma wafting ), you will still have ladoos albeit with a raw taste. Experience does wonders 🙂 (At this point author is nodding her head sagely 🙂 )
  3. I used 4 tablespoons of unmelted / softened  ghee. It will be a bit more in the volume in the liquid form.
  4. Size of the ladoos – make it smaller if you are attempting it for a party. Make more that way 🙂 sneaky .. sneaky…
  5. The sugar to besan ratio , I personally like it at this level. You  could increase it of course per your convenience, I did not try this with brown sugar. Maybe next time !
  6. Ladoos not happening???.. balls breaking off? Add more ghee or maybe you can sprinkle with warm milk – note sprinkle, not add it in!. Shelf life will be considerably lower if you do decide sprinkle with milk.

 

Cooking time : about 40 min , including the ladoo making process.

Yield : About 16-25  depending on the size of the ladoos and in this case considerably less after sampling !

Verdict : Sinful and worth the effort!

Signing off..