Shriya's Vegan Modak - A Traditional Indian Sweet Coconut Dumpling
It's Freaky Friday and Shriya has volunteered to share her Modak recipe with us. This recipe is very timely because right now the Hindu Festival of Ganesh Chaturthi is going on and modaks are widely consumed throughout India during this festival. Ganesh Chaturthi is a 10 day festival celebrating the birth / rebirth of the Lord Ganesha / Ganpati. It is common for sweets to be given on Holidays in India and Ganesh Chaturthi is no exception. Modak is the sweet given and eaten during this festival because it is believed to be Ganesh's favorite food.
There are different ways of making modak - different stuffings and different ways of cooking it. Some modaks are steamed. This recipe is for fried modak.
Shriya celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi in her home last year.
Rangoli on the street in Pune, India.
Rangoli is an ancient art form passed down from generation to generation. It can be made from colored sand, colored rice, flour, or flower petals. Notice the size of the feet in the corner.
Rangoli on the street in Pune, India
Pune (the hometown of the East part of East Meets West Veg) is famous for it's Ganesh Chaturthi festival.
This recipe makes 12 modaks.
2 Cups Atta Flour (a kind of whole wheat flour found in Indian grocery stores)
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp oil
1/2 Cup Water 120ml to 130ml (take water accordingly, the dough should not be soft and not too hard)
1/2 tsp. Oil (for applying on the dough after kneading )
1 ½ Cup Fresh shredded coconut (you can get this frozen in any Indian store)
1/3 Cup Jaggery or Powdered Jaggery (found at an Indian store)
¼ Cup Sugar
¼ tsp Cardamom powder
Oil - To deep fry
1. Put the flour in a parat, mixing bowl, or your preferred work surface for mixing and kneading.
2. Make a well in the flour, add salt,1 tsp oil and water a little at a time.
3. Knead to form a smooth, medium hard dough.
4. Add 1/2 tsp oil & keep kneading until you get a smooth, medium hard dough.
5. Cover it and let it rest for a minimum of 15 minutes.
This is how the dough will look after resting. It's going to rest more than 15 minutes because you will now start making the stuffing and the stuffing will rest for 15 minutes as well.
1. Mix jaggery, sugar and coconut well.
2. Add cardmom powder and mix.
4. Heat a pan on medium flame.
5. Add above mixture to the heated pot. Cook for 5-8 minutes, stirring continuously.
1. Apply a little oil on rolling pin and board.
2. Divide dough into 12 small balls.
3. Flatten the ball of dough.
4. Roll with circular motions and make a flat sheet of 3-4 inches (the sheet should not be too thin or too thick)
5. Spread a spoonful of stuffing over the puri, or rolled sheet.
6. Fold the edges up one by one as shown below.
7. Gather all edges in the center. Seal it, put aside and prepare all the other modaks. Keep the modaks covered while you are working.
8. Heat the oil for deep frying. Test your oil by making a small ball of the dough and putting it in oil. If the oil is ready, the small ball comes up or immediately floats.
9. When the oil is ready, deep fry in batches of 2 - 3 modaks.
10. Remove them when they are golden brown (not brown) and place on a paper towel or tissue to drain out the excess oil. Each batch should take less than 2 minutes.