While the semolina laddu is more commonly made in homes in Sri Lanka, particularly in the north, I prefer the chickpeas flour laddu. I generally refer to that laddu as the ‘Thirupathi laddu’ as the best chickpeas flour laddu I have tasted to-date is the ‘prasadam’ from Andhra Pradesh’s famed Thirupathi temple.
We rarely make it at home as it is not easy to come by high quality chickpeas flour in most stores. As an amateur cook who only started taking an interest in cooking six months ago, it was not surprising that I burnt my laddu during my first attempt. I learnt that one has to be really quick during the roasting and mixing other ingredients part.
So, for today’s Navarathri festival recipe, I would like to share my mother’s recipe for the chickpea laddu. The accompanying photo is temporarily that of the photo I took of the Vajira Pillaiyar koyil ‘laddu’ and will be replaced when I take a photo of the laddu my mother makes later this week.
Time taken: 15 – 20 mins
Makes 8 – 10
- Chickpeas flour – 1 cup
- Sugar – ½ cup
- Low fat vegetable oil margarine or ghee – ½ cup
- Cardamoms – 4, crushed
- Cashew nuts – 2 tbsp
- Raisins – 2 tbsp
- Sugar candy – 1 tbsp (optional)
- Roast the chickpeas flour over low heat, without allowing it to burn, for about 5 – 10 mins.
- Add crushed cardamom to the pan. Mix and remove pan from stove.
- Heat the sugar and margarine in another pan, over low heat, for around 5 mins.
- Stir in the chickpeas flour.
- Add the chopped cashew nut, raisins and the optional sugar candy quickly. Do not allow flour to burn.
- Add 4 tbsp of hot water. Mix well and remove pan from stove.
- Using hand, quickly divide mixture into 8 – 10 smaller balls.
- Allow ‘laddu’ to cool and firm, before serving.
Recipe source: Raji Thillainathan.