The festive season finally begins in India. The revelry makes people giddy with joy. Navratri or the nine nights of dancing started today and Diwali is right around the corner. Funtastic!!!
Festive season means a lot of holidays from school and also a lot of socializing. Offering home made snacks to your guests and also your perennially hungry growing children was the norm and continues to be so. That means mom used to spend a couple of days making nashtas- snacks. I remember as kids, how my brother and I used to sneak into the kitchen while my mom was preparing the delicious snacks every year for the festive season. As we grew a little older, mom used to enlist our help for making mathris or shakarpaare or seviyan or chakris and whatnot. Rolling out coconut ladoos was my brother's area of expertise. He used to make perfectly round ones and I could never master that skill.
So today I thought since its the first Navratra, I would try and recreate those delicious ladoos or coconut fudge that take only two ingredients and are ready in about 15 minutes from start to finish.
I gave it a special touch by placing the fudge ladoos in mini shortcrust tarts filled with chocolate ganache. This was inspired by the very popular neapolitan cake since it looks so pretty, I tried to inculcate the colours and make a delicious fusion dish. You can find my recipe for the tartlets here. They turn out to be utterly buttery, flaky and barely take any time. On to the recipe then!
Makes: 12-14 ladoos
Time taken: 15 mins
1 1/2 cup desiccated coconut + 1/2 cup coconut extra
3/4th cup condensed milk
2 drops red food colouring
1/2 tsp rose essence
3-4 tbsp coarsely ground pistachios (optional)
Pinch of love
Have all your ingredients ready. I had made the tartlets a day in advance and you can do the same since the tartlets stay good for upto 10 days approx. I even had the ganache ready. Just take about a cup of semi sweet dark chocolate and melt it in a microwave with 3/4th cup of cream and 1 tbsp butter till everything is smooth and luscious. Set it aside for the time being.
For the fudge, in a biggish skillet, take your desiccated coconut
And slow roast it for a minute on medium low heat just to warm up the coconut
Pour in the the condensed milk gradually
And very quickly mix it up with the coconut till everything is well combined. The longer the condensed milk cooks, the harder your ladoos will be. I took just around 30 seconds to mix it all up and remove it from the heat.
Now this is an optional step but I wanted my fudge ladoos to be rose flavoured and pink in colour. So I added in a couple drops rose essence.
and red food colouring
Mix well and allow to cool for 5-7 minutes.
Meanwhile coarsely grind the pistachios. Have the now cooled fudge mix and the extra coconut ready.
To assemble the ladoos, take a heaped tbsp of the fudge mix in your clean hands.
Shape it into a round and stuff the pistachios in the centre like this.
Bring up the edges to make a perfect round, well as perfect as you can get. Roll the fudge in the extra desiccated coconut and repeat the procedure for the rest of the material.
Your coconut fudge or nariyal ke ladoo are done!
How pretty do they look!
All ready for the festivities
To make it extra extra special and add the chocolatey goodness, spoon over some of that chocolate ganache into the tartlets and place the ladoo over it.
Looks decadent, isn't it?!