13 September, 2018

Aate ka Laddu | How to Make Wheat Flour Ladoo

Aate ka Laddu | Learn how to make Wheat Flour Ladoo flavoured with ghee and cardamoms

Wishing you all who are celebrating, a very Happy Ganesha Chathurthi!

Being not very religious person, I share a very close relationship with this elephant headed God who has always looked after me and lifted my spirit when I was at my lowest point. He has pulled me from the dark hole and brought me into light which is very humbling to say the least. So it’s no surprise that, this festival is and will always remain my most favourite and closest to heart. Although I had plans of cooking a strom, literally, I am keeping it simple this year with these delicious Aate ka Laddu for my Bappa!



Aate ka Laddu or whole wheat flour ladoos is one of LD’s most favourite Indian sweets made by his Ajji (Paternal grandmother). This simple Indian sweet is made using just 4 ingredients; whole wheat flour, powdered sugar, ghee and cardamom powder. Really! That’s all it needs…

To make these, I first heat the ghee until it just melts and add carefully measured whole wheat flour. I then roast the whole wheat flour in a wide pan on low heat until it’s fragrant and tickles LD’s nose! The busy body who is playing upstairs comes running down the stairs and peeps inside the kitchen to see what I am doing and that’s when I am sure it’s time to switch off the flame and transfer the roasted flour into a wide plat to cool down slightly. I smile as I look into two curious eyes, and he comes running to me and gives me a big hug! I pull the foot stool and he climbs on it, ready to help me with the cooking! I place the pestle and mortar in front of him and add couple of green cardamom pods and he begins to crush the pods with enthusiasm and gently separates the seeds from the skin and proceeds to pound the seeds into fine powder.




Meanwhile, I begin to measure the granulated sugar and powder them in a blender. I add the powdered sugar to slightly cooled roasted wheat flour, leaving aside just a small spoonful of sugar for the little boy who loves to lick the spoon! :) I take the powdered cardamom pods from LD who is looking rather proud for being such a helpful sous chef and ruffle his hair as he tries to duck away from me like any ‘big’ boy! I proceed to mix all the ingredients together and press the mixture in fist to see if they hold the shape! Mmm… A little melted ghee goes in there and yes, the mixture is holding shape and is perfect to make laddus now. I take a large spoonful of mixture and press it and shape it to make a lime sized balls and place them on a silver plate. LD sits next to me and he and I continue to shape our laddus in perfect harmony. 15 minutes later, we finish shaping the last laddus.

We take the laddu platter and place it in front of Bappa, our neivedyam or offering to him on his birthday and take his blessing. LD’s prayer is cut short by his rumbling tummy and he steals a small laddu and pops it in his mouth! I taste my own childhood memory even before I taste the laddu. I smile and pretend not to have noticed the little robbery that went under my nose. This is what festivals are for; reliving our own cherished memories and to create a new sweet memories for the future… And as for the Aate ka Laddu, take a bite and let it melt in your mouth! Heaven…




Aate ka Laddu (Whole wheat flour sweet balls flavoured with ghee and cardamoms)
Prep Time: 5 mins
Cooking Time: 30 mins
Recipe Level: Easy to Intermediate
Spice Level: N/A
Makes: Around 18 Laddus
Shelf Life: Up to a month at room temperature
Serving Suggestion: Whenever sweet cravings hits :)

Ingredients:
2 cups Aata/Whole Wheat Flour
1-1¼ cups Granulated Sugar (Adjust as per taste)
¼ cup + 1 tbsp Ghee (Adjust as per requirement to shape and roll the laddu)
8-10 Green Cardamom Pods


Method:
Preparation:
  1. Measure the granulated sugar and grind it to fine powder in a blender.
  2. Crush the cardamom pods and remove the skin. Crush the seeds to fine powder in a pestle and mortar. Keep it aside until needed.

Proceed to cook:
  1. Take a wide pan and heat ¼ cup ghee on medium heat until it just melts. To this add the whole wheat flour and roast the flour on low to medium flame, stirring continuously until the flour is roasted and a nutty fragrant fills the room. It takes around 15-20 minutes. During this cooking process don’t be tempted to increase the heat to high as you will end up either browning or burning the flour. Patience is the key for making these delicious Aate Ke Laddu! :) The aroma of the wheat flour will change from raw smell to beautiful nutty aroma which will fill the entire kitchen.
  2. Make sure you keep a close eye on the clock around 12-15 minutes of roasting the wheat flour as it is the most crucial step when everything can go wrong by over roasting the flour or worse, end up burning it! It took me exactly 18 and half minutes to reach the right stage on my gas hob and it may vary depending on the quality of the flour, the temperature setting, type of hob (induction vs gas vs electric coil etc), thickness of the kadai/wok, etc.
  3. Transfer the roasted flour into a mixing bowl and let it cool down slightly.
  4. Next add the powder sugar and cardamom powder to the roasted wheat flour and mix them all well. Take a small fistful of mixture and press it hard to see if it holds shape. If the mixture is crumbly and falls down, add a tbsp of melted ghee and mix well. Again check and see if the mixture holds shape when pressed between fists. If not, add another tbsp of ghee and repeat to see until the mixture holds shape and is easy roll into balls.
  5. Pinch a heaped table spoonful of mixture and press it hard in between your fists and gently roll between the palms to smoothen the laddu. Store these delicious Aate ke Laddu in an airtight container and store them at room temperature for up to a month.


Sia’s Notes:
  • Roast the flour by stirring continuously on low flame. During this cooking process don’t be tempted to increase the heat to high as you will end up either browning or burning the wheat flour. Patience is the key for making these delicious Aate Ke Laddu! :)
  • Under roasting the flour will leave a raw smell of flour to the laddus and over roasting will burn the wheat flour making them taste bitter. So roast until the raw smell of wheat flour disappears and the colour changes to dark golden.
  • Make sure you keep a close eye on the clock around 12-15 minutes of roasting the wheat flour as it is the most crucial step when everything can go wrong by over roasting the flour or worse, end up burning it! It took me exactly 18 and half minutes to reach the right stage on my gas hob and it may vary depending on the quality of the flour, the temperature setting, type of hob (induction vs gas vs electric coil etc), thickness of the kadai/wok, etc.
  • Only after the mixture is cooled down slightly, add the sugar or else the sugar will melt in the hot mixture and the laddus will harden.
  • If needed, you can also add dry fruits and nuts like raisins, cashews, almonds or pistachios to the laddus. Slightly roast the dry fruits and nuts in a spoonful of ghee until they turn light golden and add it to the flour mix before shaping it to balls.

2 comments :

  1. This post transported me back to my childhood days where I was assigned the cardamom crushing job 😊 lovely post Sia, Wishing you and your family Happy Ganesh Chaturthi !!

    ReplyDelete

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