When the little girl (which was me ages ago) was asked to dress up for any festival or perform a ritual for it, she used to get very impatient with all these processes. And then with a mix of innocence and defiance she would ask her mom, the rationale for so many festivals. She even rationalised it that it must be surely because of lack of activities on the part of our ancestors, who devised so many of them. After all it was pre- TV, internet and computer games era. And then she would feel very proud of her intelligent reasoning, until her mom deflated her false pride.
The patient mother explained to the little girl that the ancestors had some other plans when they created these beautiful cultural gems. They had the foresight to see the world post modernization, when we would have time for the social networks but not for the real interactions. When understanding the significance of nature and religion would be guided by google and wikipedia. And for this time and age, different rituals were developed to keep the love, respect and memory of all aspects of our lives alive. They created these occasions, when we would celebrate these festivals, meet others socially, cook with love and remember our customs.
Lohri, Pongal and Makar Snakranti are one of the first festivals that mark the beginning of the new year. Different festivals, celebrated by different communities in different parts of India at almost the same time. While Lohri is celebrated on 13th January, Pongal is 4 day celebration at same time and Makar Sankranti is celebrated on the 14th January, they all are ways to celebrate the new harvest.
At our place, Makar Sankranti is celebrated as an ode to the agricultural community and to pray for healthy harvest. The most common way of celebration is a small prayer with the khicdi, or chuda (all from the new grains) prepared and offered to God. Other than that the most popular sweet offering is "til ke laddoo" or "til ke gajak" - sweet of sesame seeds and jaggery.
So as grown up, who understands, respects and loves all these traditional customs and rituals, I too made the customary khichidi and til ke laddoo. Sharing these sweets with you virtually with all the wishes of abundance!!Til ke Laddoo Recipe
(Sweet balls of jaggery, coconut, peanuts and sesame seeds)
Recipe Source: Minimally adapted from Sanjeev Kapoor
1 cup jaggery
200 gms til - white sesame seeds
3/4 cup grated coconut
2-3 tbsp crushed peanuts (Or cashews/ almonds)
1/2 tsp cardamom powder
1/2 tbsp ghee/ unsalted butter
- Dry roast sesame seeds in a pan on medium heat; till pale/light brown about 4-5 mins. Remove and set aside.
- In same pan, roast coconut till light brown. Remove and then roast peanuts. Keep aside.
- Heat saucepan and add jaggery to it. Let it cook till it melts completely. Stir in between. Once melted, add ghee and remove from heat. Remember not to let it get burnt.
- Add roasted sesame, coconut, peanuts and cardamom powder to it and mix well. Let it cool slightly.
- Once cool enough to handle by hand, take small lumps of mixture and make balls of it with the help of your palms.
- Ensure that the mixture is still warm when rolling.
- You can check the consistency of jaggery by putting a small drop in chilled water. If it immediately forms a ball, the consistency is right.
- No need to buy cardamom powder. Just open the shell of green cardamoms and crush the seeds with mortar and pestle.
Til ke Ladoo looks very appetizing. Good write up. Sure the ancestors have made these festivities for a reason :)ReplyDelete
Lovely clicks and the sesame ladoo looks inviting. Nice writeup Anamika and true about the festivals.ReplyDelete
Yummy treat for pongal !! love these ladoos delicious !!ReplyDelete
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Feel like gulping some,wat a super tempting laddoos, lovely writeup Anamkika.ReplyDelete
wow.. look amazing... plss save some for me :)ReplyDelete
Thanks gals for such quick & lovely response!!ReplyDelete
This looks wonderful and yummy !!ReplyDelete
Iprepared the same,..:) and khichdi too,..wish ya happy festival.ReplyDelete
Simply yummy and wholesome Til ke ladoo. Wonderfully prepared.ReplyDelete
Wishes for a prosperous new year! Instead of sesame we make it with browned rice.But I love sesame and gonna try this soon.ReplyDelete
@riddhima For that dear..u need to hop over!!ReplyDelete
My fav ladoos..looks yumReplyDelete
A family fav..Looks adorable!!!ReplyDelete
I loved yr second last picture! beautiful! Til ke ladoo is something I haven eaten since long.. My mom makes it.. Will try it out myself soonReplyDelete
This is totally yummy recipe...I am loving it dear..Will try it soon..ReplyDelete
Sesame laddoos are inviting me to grap the entire bowl. Lovely. Nice pictures.ReplyDelete
Thanks everyone for your lovely comments..hope you will try it too!!ReplyDelete
enjoyed reading the post, laddoo looks fab! even i was the same as a kid.. but later realized the importance of celebrating festivals :)ReplyDelete
wow delicious ladoos,luks yum...clicks are fabulous...ReplyDelete
i'm so not a till ladoo girl, but your pic makes me try some..hope you had a great sankranthi!ReplyDelete
the til laddoos look gorgeous. we usually make just jaggery and tol ones which i am not that fond of.. i like the coconut and peanut in these. maybe these will change my mind! happy belated sankrathi to youReplyDelete