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Besan Ladoo

These delectable sweets are actually rather healthy (as sweets go!). Those of you who participated in the pujas here at Seven Winds will remember them well, lovely little morsels of prasad, even more divine when infused with the vibrations of sacred mantra. So many of you asked for the recipe, so here it is. According to tradition, Lord Ganesha is particularly fond of ladoos. Offer to the divine and enjoy with his blessings!


3/4 cup (180 ml) ghee
2 cups (205 grams) chickpea flour
2 tablespoons grated dried coconut (plus extra for rolling the balls)
2 tablespoons walnuts, chopped fine
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
3/4 (110 grams) brown sugar or maple sugar (I use coconut sugar.)

Melt the ghee in a saucepan over moderate-low heat. Add the chickpea flour, coconut, walnuts and nutmeg. Cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, for about 5 minutes. Add the sweetener and continue to cook for 10-15 minutes. The mixture should be thick and deep golden brown.  At this stage, it often seems too crumbly and dry, so I end up adding more ghee. Just add as you think is right so that the mixture holds together, though it should still be very stiff and thick.

When cooked, transfer the mixture to a glass bowl and let it cool. When it is cool enough to handle (but still warm), form small balls with your hands (about the size of a walnut)  and roll them in the dried coconut. Leave the balls to cool completely. They age really well and are actually better if made a few days ahead. They keep for ages too, if you can resist eating them. This recipe makes about 24-30 ladoos.

Recipe adapted from Yamuna Devi, Lord Krishna's Cuisine.

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