Wishing you all who stops by a very Happy, safe and prosperous Diwali
Celebrating Diwali with mawa kachori and peda / pedha.
“Sweets are always an integral part of any joyous or festive celebrations in India and so when Diwali comes the ladoos, pedas, barfis, jalebis , seera, rabdi all dressed in gorgeous attire arrives at the market to lure us which even the calorie conscious people find hard to resist. Hence to score on this front the sweetmeat shops began blending and experimenting with various ingredients , themes and thus “designer sweets” made their entry in the market that catches easily the people’s fancies.
Kaju (cashew nut) still rule the roost as most important ingredients in the sweets along side with almonds and figs but a new brand of pan mithais are slowly getting popular and this year with pan pethas encasing the gulkand they are determined to steal the show.
This reminds me of delicious mava gulkand roll of Anand which I love so much.”… excerpt fr0m my previous post which is worth sharing once more on Diwali.
But the bitter truth behind this sweet story is “are you getting the real stuff” in spite of shelling out so much on Diwali mithais. Read here for the full story on spurious / adulterated khova / mawa.
So, this Diwali I thought of making mawa / khova from scratch and if you want to know : “how to make khova at home”, Chef in you will take you through this.
In India, sweets are usually made with milk, and besan or chickpea flour being the other very important constituents. While in the sweet capital of India aka Kolkata, the sweets are all chhana based or casein or paneer, but in other parts of India, khova / mawa or milk solids forms the base for any mithais or sweets. Milk was first evaporated with the help of soda or alum, to coagulate it to form mawa, which is then mixed with different types of food colors to impart colors to the sweets which will resemble like pista, kesar or saffron, badam etc. Here lies the ample scope of adulterating the foods and in the midst of all the euphoria of Diwali, we overlook such things which may results later in some grave consequences.
Mawa or khova is very easy to handle, you need no special skill for this, just heat it slightly on low flame, mixed it with nuts and delicious filling is ready, which you can use it in number of ways….better still it will invoke the creativity in you too.
- All purpose flour : 2 cups
- Ghee / clarified butter : 3 tbsp (at room temperature)
- Salt to taste
- Warm water : ⅓ cup or more.
- Mawa / khova : ½ cup
- Dried nuts (sliced almonds and pistachios) : ¾ cup
- Sugar : ½ cup
- Sugar : 1 cup
- Water : 1 cup
- Cardamoms : 1 or 2
- Saffron : few strands
- In a bowl, add the flour, salt and ghee, mix it well till it forms beads. Now, add the warm water very slowly and little at a time, and knead it well.
- The dough should be soft and pliable. Cover the dough with a kitchen towel and let it stand for at least 30 minutes.
- In the meanwhile, prepare the mawa filling and syrup or chashni.
- Heat a non-stick pan slightly and add the mawa till it gets a beautiful golden brown hues.
- Add the sugar and mix it fast. Add the dried nuts, mix them well.
- In a saucepan, add the water followed by sugar and keep it in a medium heat for few minutes till the water starts boiling.
- Increase the heat, add the cardamom pods and keep stirring, till you find the syrup to be one string consistency.
- Dip a teaspoon into it and if it coats the back of the spoon, syrup is ready. You can add few strands of saffron in it, though it is optional.
- Pinch a plum size balls from the dough and make small rounds. You can make 12 small size kachoris or 8 medium size kachoris out of it.
- Roll out the ball into a thin round disc, stuff a teaspoon of mawa-nut mixture in the center, pull the edges closely to cover the filling and then keep it in between your palm and flatten them slightly, so that mixture will spread evenly.
- If you want to crimp the edges of kachori, then wet the edges and then crimp with your fingers. Crimp will hold better this way.
- Make some 10 -12 kachoris, filled with mawa and crimped at the edges, keep them for 10-15 minutes before deep frying them in hot oil
- The oil for deep frying, should not be too hot, when dipped, kachoris should sizzle and come to the surface slowly.
- Drain the mawa kachoris in kitchen towel before dipping them in syrup for 2 minutes.
Mawa filling can be used to make kachori, gujiyas or empanadas, or you can use it in pancake filling...etc..put on your thinking cap and am sure you will come out with many more fantastic ideas.
Garnish the mawa kachoris with left over filling or any thing that suits you and serve them at room temperature. It can be refrigerated for 2-3 days, when stored in air tight container.
For simple mawa peda / pedha
Mawa / khova ; 1/2 cup
Milk : 1/4 cup
Sugar : 1/2 cup or depends upon your taste
Cardamom powder : 1/2 tsp
Sliced almonds or pistachios or saffron for garnishing
Method : Heat a nonstick pan slightly and add the mawa and sugar together. Mix them well for few minutes and then add the milk. Stir continuously till it thickens and began to collect as a soft dough.
Cool them slightly before making small balls or pedha. Make a thumbprint in the center of each pedha and garnish it with sliced almonds, pistachios or saffron or just simple rose petals.
Enjoy the Diwali goodies