Sunday, October 30, 2011

Mindful action at its best!

This post is not the one I promised in the last one. This post is one that I wanted to do for the pure joy of participating in one of my most favourite blogger Sunshinemom’s contest. I love her blog and the way she writes. The passion with which she makes food and the way she makes them look so sinful is amazing. This one’s only for you, sunshinemom :)

When sunshinemom aka Harini wrote about Krya, I was thrilled to read about the passion behind its founders, Preethi and Srinivas. Hats off to both of you for such a wonderful initiative. You both are an inspiration. When some dietary changes enhanced my family’s health, I was happy to know that I have also taken care of the environment and therefore of Mother Earth with those changes. It will be wonderful to extend such changes in every choice we make in our life. Krya shows there is hope.

Since food is the primary contributor towards my family’s regained health, I had to force myself to re-think a lot of things when it came to preparing food at home. One of the food items that my family has stopped consuming is all kinds of dairy products. I was stunned to know the number of diseases that this food alone is responsible for. My hubby’s sugar and cholesterol levels showed amazing improvement once this food was dropped from his diet. Since then, I have been trying to make things the non-dairy way. And the results have been pleasantly encouraging. Apart from my personal experiences, a book that helped me clear my doubts about dairy is Milk: A Silent Killer by Dr. N.K.Sharma. Another book I plan to lay my hands on soon is Head and Tails by Maneka Gandhi.

Being vegetarian south Indians, it was not difficult to be vegan when it comes to our daily meals. I’m happy that Indian cuisine gives me more options to be vegan than anything else. Be it idlis, dosas, upmas, pulaos..the list is endless. The one area where I’m stumped with this lifestyle is when it comes to desserts and many snack items. Slowly, I’m exploring ways to make a near-perfect version of these in a vegan way. But, invariably they turn out different and yet surprisingly equally tasty. The one dish that is sorely missed eating was besan ka ladoo. Besan ka ladoo without ghee is unthinkable. So, I thought hard and decided that I’m going to make this by simply dropping the ghee. Yes, just like that. I’m not an expert cook you see. So, that was the easiest thing to do. I made these for Diwali and whoever ate it loved it and never called it besan ka laddoo. People called it date fudge, besan fudge etc. But none of them called it besan ka ladoo!!! No problem there, because it was tasty and the most important person, my one and a half year-old daughter, refused to leave the dabba alone for the next two days until all the ladoos in it vanished. I’m smiling and ready to make another batch soon.

Besan ka ladoo

Besan – 2 cups
Jaggery - 1 1/2 cups
Cardamom powder – 1 tsp
Hot water

1. Roast besan until it changes it colour from a bright yellow to a grainy pale yellowish brown colour. It should also give off a nice aroma at this point.
2. Add cardamom powder to the roasted besan.
3. Melt jaggery. To check the right consistency of the jaggery syrup, drop a bit of jaggery in a bowl of water. If it takes the shape of a ball without getting dissolved, the jaggery consistency is ready. In the meanwhile, make sure you have hot water ready for making the besan balls.
4. Add the melted jaggery to the besan. Quickly mix it with a spoon to start making a dough. Jaggery tends to solidify the mixture. So, add hot water to the dough gradually until you get the right softness for your ladoos.
5. Pinch small amounts of the dough and make round balls.

Yes, I have used jaggery, not sugar. Refined sugar is something that I try to avoid as much as I can. The colour of these ladoos are not like the regular besan ladoos but nevertheless tempting and tasty.


  1. Wow! I am totally inspired, Shamitha! When you first wrote to me, I was awed by your writing skills and knew you had to blog, and am so glad you started one! That you did it, with an entry to the contest, makes it very special for me too!

    These ladoos look delicious! I am so glad you introduced me to Anju Venkat. I have already signed up and will be attending the awareness course starting on 12th! Thank you so much for the delicious sweet entry - perfect way to start a blog!

    I am already looking forward to some wonderful, healthy recipes from you!

    Harini from Tongue Ticklers

    P.S: the comment form does not seem to support external urls.

  2. Hi Shamitha,
    I was simply thrilled to read both your posts. It was heartening to read your story, so well told about the health issues your family faced and your positivity and patience in trying out so many diets and programs to help them.

    I think trying a vegan diet would really help - I'm inspired to see that you took Harini's challenge to heart and decided to try it right away.

    The besan laddoos looked really good too - have decided to try this the next time a festival comes knocking!

    Krya Consumer Products

  3. Thanks a ton, Sunshinemom and Preethi, for your lovely and encouraging comments!

  4. That is truly innovative...I would never have thought of such a sweet recipe without ghee in it!
    I am surely trying this soon.