In case some of us are not yet fluent in Sweet after the previous post, let’s stay on the topic and exercise more. Laddu comes from the Sanskrit word transliterated as ladduka or lattika, meaning a small ball. It is a simple confection cooked with flour, sugar and ghee or butter. The recipe I’m offering today comes with a twist.
Unlike the laddus I’ve tasted in India, this version is soft and rich. It has a texture similar to milk sweets. It is sweetened by honey and flavoured by orange zest. Because orange and carob (or chocolate) are one of my favourite taste combinations, I sometimes cover the sweets with carob-frosting and cut them into squares. Can they still be called laddus? I don’t know, but they sure are enchanting!
Try mixing coconut fat with unsalted butter when roasting the chickpea flour. It adds a new dimension and makes laddu even softer. You can improvise the recipe with almonds, nuts, coconut, sesame, dry fruits, vanilla, carob, cacao, ginger (or ginger-syrup) and lemon zest...to find your favourite taste.
LADDU (12 bigger or 24 smaller pieces)
100 g unsalted butter
200 ml chickpea flour (Besan)
A pinch of nutmeg powder or cardamom - optional
A small handful of desiccated coconut or almond slivers – optional
Finely grated zest of an orange
1 tablespoon milk-powder
50-60 ml honey
Melt the butter in a medium low temperature.
Add the chickpea flour, mix well to make sure there are no lumps.
Roast until the flour becomes golden colour and gives out a pleasant aroma (it takes about 10-15 minutes). Remember to mix it constantly with a spatula to prevent from burning.
A few minutes before it is ready, add the almonds or coconut and let them get some colour. You may add the spices at the same time.
Remove from the stove and let it cool for about 5 minutes.
Whisk in the orange zest, milk powder and honey.
Flatten it on a lightly butter surface or a baking paper.
Let it cool to the point that you are comfortable rolling balls from it.
250 g coconut fat
300 ml powder sugar
Pure vanilla extract or powder
150 ml carob powder (or cacao)
Melt the coconut fat in a medium low temperature.
Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well.
Pour on the top of the laddu.
Let it cool completely in the refrigerator before cutting into squares.