For some one who swears by Madras ( now Chennai .. you know all about your loyalty to the birth place and all) , I have these ancestral threads and lineage linking to the grand old city of Mysore and a bit beyond. A good 20 km or 12 miles or so from the main city of Mysore lies the sleepy village of Nanjangud. I am not exactly sure on the origins of how the lineage was established to this , but the annual or bi-annual journey for our family inevitably includes a car trip from Bangalore to Mysore. On the way of course we stopped for tender coconuts – what a refreshment right down to your soul, and of course Maddur Vade. There is this small joint on the way called Maddur tiffany’s or something similar. The simply serve the very best of this variation. My mom simply loves these. It does not matter what time of the day the trip occurred, a stop for these was always included in the travel itinerary. And yes hot, piping hot, crunchy flat discs browned with deep-frying in the oil but glistening with the tone of fried onions in these and spiced by green chilies and flavored by curry leaves, cilantro and Jeera.. Oh my! Sure takes you down the memory lane! And no matter how hot the temperature was on the outside, my mom always had it with a cup of steaming hot filter coffee. Always!
It somehow struck me that on FD, I should make these. Just like that ! Sometimes you don’t need a reason for a good thing.. a feel good thing!
I think I simply got bit by the festive bug severely. Seriously, this Diwali I seem to be favoring the creation of sweets or mithai more over the savory, spicy crunchy stuff. Maybe it has to do with the awesome piece of news I received last week. In any case, “more the merrier” seems to be the motto as I favor this creation. My oldest loves these and my youngest will eat anything that is a ladoo 🙂 the rest of the family don’t really need an excuse.
This particular mithai is super quick, no seriously super quick to make and I barely have any stove time involved in it at all.
Prep time : 15 min
Make time : about 15 – 20 min
Yield : 20-24 ladoos
Semolina/Cream of wheat/ Sooji/Rava : 2 cups
Sugar : 1.5 cups
Melted Ghee : needs to be in the warm liquid form – about 1-1.25 cups.
Raw Cashewnut powder : Totally optional: 1/2 cup – I just added it in, cause I had some leftover from making Kaju Burfi.
In a microwave safe bowl, add in the 2 cups of semolina and microwave it for about 5 minutes in total in 2 minute intervals. Now keep an eye on it, as you want this to be toasted not burnt. When it turns a light brown color, keep it aside to cool . Say for about 5 minutes or so.
Once it cools down, pulse the semolina in a blender to coarsely powder it. Add in the sugar and pulse it once again.
Slight heat up the saffron strands and pulse it with cardamom pods.
Give a final spin in the blender incorporating the semolina, sugar, saffron and cardamom and the cashew nut powder if adding it in.
Remove this dry mix in a work bowl and add in the toasted/ pan fried cashew nuts and cranberries.
Gently mix it to ensure the nuts and berries are distributed evenly.
Now add in the melted ghee in liquid and warm state, a few tablespoons at a time. The idea is to gently mix in small portions and roll in to spherical globes or ladoos. If you are having difficulty shaping the ladoos or want to restrict the use of ghee, then add in the 2 tbsp of milk and gently mix it in. the idea is to get the mix wet not soppy. If required add in the remaining 2 tbsp of milk as well.
Place the ladoos on a flat plate to rest and air dry. ( The ghee solidifies to maintain the spherical shape)
In about 15 -20 min, the ladoos should be ready to be devoured. ( I am missing quite a few by the time the post is done 🙂 )
I did not use milk to make these ladoos. Especially since I am going to be sending a few in a care package and I did not want to reduce the shelf life.
Finely chopped pistachios can be added to this and it makes it even more delectable!
The coarseness of the semolina to be used is a personal preference.
I used a little under a cup of ghee to prepare the ladoos. Usage of ghee can vary depending the raw material used.