Festive dishes for Gudi Padwa

Today is Gudi Padwa. Here are a couple of authentic festive recipes by Maharaj Bhawar Singh, Corporate Chef, Khandani Rajdhani, that will add some sweetness to your celebrations.
Maharaj bhawar singh, corporate chef, khandani rajdhani, is a living example of hard work and perseverance paying off.
Maharaj Bhawar Singh, Corporate Chef, Khandani Rajdhani, is a living example of hard work and perseverance paying off.

No Indian festival is complete without some traditional sweets, and Gudi Padwa, which marks the arrival of spring and the reaping of rabi crops, is no exception. Here are two dishes, with easy to follow recipes, that you can make at home to celebrate the festival. The recipes are by Bhawar Singh Ji Maharaj, one of the Pancharatnas at Khandani Rajdhani. Singh’s career had humble beginnings in Baroda, Gujarat. After he arrived in Mumbai, he undertook odd jobs as a helper at Rajdhani since 1989. However, life had other plans for him and he soon saw himself helping other chefs in the kitchen. His cooking career took off in 1997 at Rajdhani as he was immensely motivated by Hemji Maharaj who inspired him to cook traditional Rajasthani cuisine.

Today, Bhawar Singh Ji Maharaj is an expert with over 30 years of experience. He loves cooking and eating and his favourite dishes include Ker Sangri Ki Sabzi, Daal Baati, Boondi ki Sabzi and a variety of seasonal green vegetables. He makes it a point to make his own khada masala powder for his preparations. His favourite utensil is Langdi, a deep, silver-coated brass vessel used for preparing a variety of dishes.

The humble and talented Bhawar Singh Ji Maharaj has showcased his culinary skills internationally as well. He has travelled to Bangkok, Oman, and Dubai where he cooked scrumptious, traditional Rajasthani meals at weddings. For Gudi Padwa, he is sharing recipes for the popular Basundi and for Mohanthal Ladoos.

Basundi

Basundi

Ingredients

  • 2 lts Full fat milk
  • 1/2 cup Sugar (you can reduce by another tbsp)
  • 1/2 tsp Cardamom powder
  • 7-8 strands Saffron (soaked in 2 tbsps of warm milk)
  • 2 tbsp Pistachios
  • 7-8 Almonds, blanched and peeled

Method

  1. Sliver the blanched almonds, chop the pistachios and set aside.
  2. Boil milk in a large heavy bottomed wide vessel on high flame. Once it comes to a boil, reduce flame to low and allow to simmer for 12-15 minutes, stirring in intervals of 2-3 minutes.
  3. Add sugar.
  4. Keep stirring constantly.
  5. Allow the milk to simmer till it has thickened and reduced in quantity to half.
  6. Add cardamom powder.
  7. Cook for a few minutes and allow it to cool.
  8. Garnish with almonds and pistachios.

Suggested read: Celebrating the season’s bounty at Bombay Canteen

Mohanthal Ladoos

Mohanthal ladoos

Ingredients

  • 2 cups Besan Flour Karkara
  • 3 tbsp melted Ghee
  • 6 tbsp milk
  • 1 cup melted  ghee
  • 1/4 cups sugar
  • 5 tsp milk
  • 1 tbsp rose water optional
    1/4 tsp Elaichi powder
  • 1/4 tsp Kesar (Saffron )
  • 1/2 tap ghee for greasing
    1 tbsp pista chopped for sprinkling
  • 1 tbsp almonds for sprinkling

Method

  1.  Take the saffron and ½ tsp warm water in a bowl, mix well and keep aside. Combine the besan, 3 tbsp of melted ghee and 3 tbsp of milk in a deep bowl and mix well using your fingertips till no lumps remain. Gently press it to even out the mixture. Cover with a lid and keep aside for 30 minutes. Break the lumps lightly with your fingertips and sieve the mixture using a sieve with big holes. Keep aside.
  2. Heat the ghee in a brass vessel on a high flame for 1 minute.
  3. Add the sieved besan mixture, mix well and cook on a medium flame for 5 minutes, or till the mixture turns brown in colour, while stirring continuously. Remove from the flame and keep aside to cool for 15 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, combine the sugar and 1 cup of water in a deep non-stick pan, mix well and cook on a high flame for 2 minutes, while stirring continuously.
  5. Lower the flame to slow. When it boils, add 2 tsp of milk, mix well and cook on a medium flame for 3 to 4 minutes, while stirring occasionally. Remove the dirt that floats on the sugar mixture and discard it. Lower the flame to slow and cook for 7 minutes, or till the syrup is of 1.5 thread consistency, while stirring occasionally.
  6. Add the rose water and mix well. Keep aside.
  7. Add the cardamom powder, saffron-water mixture and sugar syrup to the cooled besan mixture, mix well and stir for approx. 3 to 4 minutes, while stirring continuously or till the mixture cools.
  8. Make round ladoos.

Read more.

Ugadi special: Healthy coconut jaggery and chia seeds laddoo by Executive Chef JP Singh