In many Konkani households of Udupi, Mangalore region, chickpea flour ladoos are made and served as Naivedyam to Lord Krishna on Krishna Janmastami. These ladoos are a mixture of chickpea flour, puffed paddy, jaggery. They are flavoured with cashews, dried coconut, sesame seeds fried in ghee. These ladoos are an absolute delight to eat while they are hot or cold. They can be stored for months together if they are made right. Below are the steps to make them.
These laddus are called as astami ladoo, astami undo, chanepitta undo in Konkani. Astami means Krishna Janmashtami in Konkani, chanepitt refers to chickpea flour in Konkani.
Traditionally these ladoos are made from whole chickpeas. The whole chickpeas are roasted, ground, separated from their husk and then the chickpea powder is used to make ladoos. These days when you get dehusked, split chickpeas, why take the pain of separating chickpeas from their husk?
1 cup split chickpeas
3/4 cup of ghee
1 tablespoon of cardamoms/cardamom powder
1/4 cup of chopped sun dried coconut
2 tablespoons of sesame seeds
1 cup powdered jaggery (preferably use jaggery that’s used for making ladoos, that gets sticky on heating called as anta godd in Konkani, antinunde in Kannada)
1 cup puffed paddy/broken puffed paddy
Makes: 10-13 ladoos
Preparation Time: 60 minutes
Prep before you start making ladoos:
Fry chickpeas until they start to brown. Once they cool down completely, grind them into a fine powder. If you find chickpea flour in stores then you can save some time and effort.
Sieve the ground chickpea flour to separate out any remaining pieces of chickpeas. Keep the fine chickpea powder aside. Grind the unpowdered pieces of chickpea into a fine powder.
Fry pieces of dried coconut with 3 tablespoons of ghee until it starts to brown.
Fry sesame seeds with a tablespoon of ghee until it starts to splutter.
Fry cashews whole or broken into pieces, with 3 tablespoons of ghee until they start to brown.
If you have whole puffed paddy instead of broken puffed paddy, then grind whole puffed paddy in a mixer to get broken puffed paddy. Pulse for few seconds and the whole puffed paddy gets broken down.
Grind cardamom seeds in a blender into a fine powder and keep it aside.
Heat a wok, add in powdered jaggery and 1/2 cup of water.
Let the jaggery dissolve completely in the water.
Once the jaggery dissolves let it simmer for about 10 minutes until you get a nice sticky syrup when you touch it with your fingers. If its still watery let it simmer down into a sticky syrup.
Once you have a thick sticky syrup, to the boiling syrup add in fried coconut pieces, sesame seeds, cardamom powder, remaining ghee, fried cashews and mix well.
Add in chickpea flour and mix well.
After mixing if the ladoo mixture is still watery, add broken puffed paddy little by little and mix well until you get a thick mixture.
Remove off heat and let it cool for 2-3 minutes.
Wet your palm by dipping it in a bowl of water and make tiny ladoos.
Add the rolled ladoos onto a plate layered with broken puffed paddy.
Water keeps your hand moist and saves your skin from the heat of the mixture.
A layer of broken puffed paddy on the plate prevents the ladoos from sticking to the plate.
These ladoos are a pleasure to eat while they are hot.
Store the ladoos once they cool in dry containers and enjoy them as and when you please.
They stay good for about a month or more.
If you use fresh coconut instead of dried coconut then the ladoos tend to get spoilt fast. When you use properly sun dried coconut, you can store these ladoos for months.
For more Konkani desserts and sweets recipes look here.