This time for Diwali I wanted to make a laddu I had never made before and was searching endlessly for an interesting recipe. As soon as I read Chandrika's poha laddu post I was immediately transported back to my school days when we used to get these borugula laddus in a small store outside our school for 10 paise each. You see, in my mind, flattened rice (Poha) and puffed rice (Kurmura) belong to the same category and hence the relation. They are even right next to each other in my pantry. I have an obsession with bundling "like" things together like that in the kitchen and everywhere else :). If any psychologists are reading this blog, feel free to post your 2 cents on what that tells about me hehe...
With Kurmura in mind, I went searching for a Laddu recipe and found a couple. I chose this one. I did make some changes to the proportion of ingredients and also added in brown sugar. It seemed pretty simple to make and it really is very simple as you will see below.
- 2 cups crushed jaggery
- 1 cup packed brown sugar
- 1 cup raw peanuts
- 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
- 4 cups puffed rice/kurumura/murmura/borugulu
- 1 pinch caradamom powder
- one large heavy bottomed vessel
- First roast the raw peanuts in the vessel on low-medium heat until the peanuts starts to smell nuttly and are golden brown.
- Fold a tea towel in half and put the peanuts on one half of the towel to cool. After the peanuts are cold enough to handle, cover the peanuts with the other half of the towel and rub gently on top of the towel with your hands. This is in order to remove the skin from the peanuts. Then gently blow air over the peanuts so the skin flys away. I usually do this at the sink and then clean it up later.
- In the same vessel that we used to roast the peanuts with, put in the jaggery and brown sugar and add just enough water so that the jaggery is immersed in the water. Bring it to a boil and wait for the sauce to thicken. I followed the method described in the recipe on how to check the consistency of the jaggery syrup i.e. "add a few drops into a bowl containing water and it shall solidify immediately."
- Turn off the heat and add the puffed rice, peanuts, coconut and caradamom powder. Mix it all together and allow it to cool.
- I tried the "grease your hands with ghee and make laddus" for this and it did not work. The puffed rice mixture was too sticky and it was sticking to my hands big time. So I devised a new technique. I took a sheet of plastic wrap and then put a spoonful of the laddu mixture in the centre of the plastic, made that into a ball - voila - no sticking at all. So this recipe does not even need any ghee!