Ganesh Chaturthi also known as Vinayaka Chaturthi is a Hindu festival that celebrates the birth of the elephant-headed Lord Ganesha’s birth. Lord Ganesha is the symbol of wisdom, good fortune, and prosperity. He is considered as the one who removes obstacles and who gives us intelligence.
This festival has a lot of rituals and traditions and of course when there is a festival a lot of sweets are involved as well. The usual sweets that are made during and eaten during this festival are Laddoos and Modaks. These are the favorites of Lord Ganesha. Modaks are steamed or fried sweet dumplings made from rice flour or flour.
Since most of us love sweets, it’s not easy to resist indulging in a lot of these during festivals ! Especially when most of the sweets are given to us as prasad (offering)! Also, we are always trying to avoid these so as not to put on weight or any other health reasons! Is there a way that we can make sweets and eat them without any guilt?
Well, here are some healthy sweet recipes that you can try during this Ganesh festival!!
HEALTHY DATE LADDOOS
These healthy and tasty laddoos are ready under 15 minutes!! These versatile laddoos can include your favorite nuts, seeds or even coconut! Dates have many benefits like they help in lowering cholesterol, are protein-rich, have vitamins, iron, fiber and much more! Nuts have protein, good fat (consumed in small quantities) and fiber!
You don’t even need ghee or oil for these.
- 20 to 25 pitted dates
- 1/4 cup nuts like almonds, pistachios, cashews, walnuts
- A couple of tablespoons desiccated coconut ( optional )
- Roast the nuts and chop them fine by hand or in a good processor.
- In the same pan, sauté the dates till soft and melted. Grind them in a blender and then mix with the nuts.
- Take small lemon sized portions and roll them out into ball shapes ( you can apply a bit of ghee if needed to make this easier )
- An optional step is to roll these balls in a desiccated coconut!
HEALTHY JOWAR /SORGHUM LADDOOS
Jowar is such a healthy grain! It is gluten-free, good for digestion, controls blood sugar, keeps us fuller longer, has protein, improves digestion, and also is good for our heart! Jaggery has iron, boosts immunity, generates heat in the body, good for digestion and even detoxifies the body!
Ingredients ( for 10 to 12 laddoos)
* 1 cup Jowar
* 1/4 cup chopped roasted nuts ( optional)
* 1/2 cup Powdered jaggery
* 1/2 cup coconut
- Heat a pan and roast the jowar (some might pop but don’t let it burn). A nice aroma is what we are aiming for.
- Let it cool, and blend it to a powder along with powdered jaggery, and coconut.
- Transfer to a plate and add the finely chopped nuts and make small sized balls.
- Serve! You can store these in an airtight container.
HEALTHY MODAK with JACKFRUIT FLOUR
Jackfruit flour is full of fiber and has a low Glycemic Index. It helps to keep you feeling full longer.
For the outer cover :
- 3/4 cup jackfruit flour
- 1/4 cup whole wheat flour ( optional)
- a tsp oil
- a pinch salt
For the filling :
- One fresh coconut
- 1/2 cup jaggery
- 1/2 tsp of dry ginger and green cardamom powder
- Few cashews, almonds, and raisins
- A pinch of salt
- A tsp of ghee
For the cover :
* Sift the dry ingredients.
* Add water little by little and knead a soft dough.
* Apply the oil and cover and let it rest for 15 to 20 minutes.
In the meantime make the filling.
For the filling :
* Chop coconut into small pieces and grind in a blender.
* Heat the ghee and sauté the coconut till light brown. Keep stirring all the while.
* Add the jaggery and let it melt, stirring constantly.
* Add the salt, ginger powder and green cardamom powder and mix well.
* Coarsely grind the almonds and cashews.
* Add these and the raisins to the mixture.
* Switch off the flame and let it cool.
For making the modaks :
* Make small balls of the dough and roll into small puris, not too thin and not too thick.
* Place a spoonful of stuffing in the center and gather the rolled puri to give a modak shape.
* Grease a steamer plate and place the modaks on it.
* Steam the modaks for 10 to 12 minutes.
* Serve them warm.
So now you don’t have an excuse to avoid eating sweets !! Make these offerings to the Lord Ganesha and serve to your friends and family!! Indulge yourself too. Please share in comments below any healthy sweet recipes for this festival!
Geeta Hansaria is a homeopath with a passion for writing, especially food poems, binges on DIY kid crafts and cooks up yummy ‘thalis’ for her vast Instagram fan following.