September 9, 2021: Every popular story and children’s cartoons portray Lord Ganesha’s love for modak. It is a well-known fact and has a mythological basis to it. Modak is an Indian sweet cuisine that can be made in many different ways.
While many places have restrictions over the Ganesh Chaturthi celebration this year, here are some modak recipes that come as your mood lifter.
Different types of Modak for this year’s Ganesh Puja celebration
A modak can be made in various ways. Some use a rice shell and are steamed while some are fried. These days, modaks made of chocolate and malai are pressed in a mould and voila!
Easy and tasty modaks ready in seconds.
To make the modak shell you’ll need:
- 1 cup water
- 2 tsp ghee
- 1 cup rice flour
Steps to make the shell:
- Boil water with ghee in a deep dish. Add flour and mix well.
- Now cover the dish and cook till it’s half done.
- Put some ghee on the base of a steel bowl and knead while the dough is still hot.
- Take some dough and roll it into a ball. Place the flattened dough into a mould or make a flower-shaped pattern with your hands.
The next step is to add the fillings.
To fill the modak:
- Start filling the disc-shaped dough with the modak filling prepared previously. After you have sufficiently filled the modak, pinch the edges of the disc to make protruded edges and bring together the folds in the centre.
- Make all the modaks in a similar way, do not overfill them. Use a steamer and steam the modaks for 15-20 minutes or till they are done. You can wrap them in a muslin cloth. You can also fry the modak instead.
Here are some traditional and quirky filling ideas to make the Modak
1. Ukadiche Steamed Modak
- To make Ukadiche stuffing, combine virgin coconut oil, jaggery and grated coconut in a non-stick pan.
- Cook the mixture for about 2-3 minutes only, do not overcook.
- Then add the cardamom powder, poppy seeds (roasted), and other ingredients of the filling and mix well. Keep the filling aside.
2. Khajur Modak (doesn’t need the shell)
- Roast the nuts firstly until fragrant in ghee. Take care such as to not change its colour, so roast in medium flame.
- Set aside. Deseed the dates.
- Once nuts cooled down, grind them coarsely. Do not powder too much, there should be bits and pieces of nuts.
- Transfer to a mixing bowl and grind dates to a paste.
- Mix both the ground dates and nuts and grease the mould with ghee.
- Grease your hands with ghee and fill the mould with the mixture.
- Unmold carefully and arrange in paper liners.
3. Kesar Malai Modak (doesn’t need shell)
- Place the cottage cheese on a plate and mash well until it is soft.
- Heat a pan on a low flame. Add the crushed cottage cheese, condensed milk, and saffron strands.
- Cook on a low flame. Keep stirring continuously. Allow the ingredients to mix well. Mash the larger granules of cottage cheese with a spatula.
- Cook the mixture for 8-9 minutes on a low flame until the mixture starts to thicken and leave the sides of the pan.
- Grease the modak mould with little ghee and fill it up to make Kesar Malai modak.
4. Nutty-Chocolate Modak
- Mix 50 ml milk and a half can of condensed milk in a pan over medium heat.
- When it begins to boil, turn off the heat, add 275 gm of chocolate chips. Keep stirring until it melts.
- Cook the mixture over a low flame.
- When it begins to thicken, add a cup of powdered digestive biscuits and stir forms a dough.
- Add chopped pistachio to give it a nutty taste.
- Mould the mixture into modak shape.
- Top it off with chocolate chips and roasted pistachios.
5. Pistachio Modak (doesn’t need a shell)
- In a pan mix sugar and milk. Heat it. Add saffron dissolved in 1 tbsp. milk.
- Bring the sugar syrup to a boil and simmer for 1-2 minutes. Add pistachio powder and mix well till the mixtures start to thicken slightly in 2-3 minutes.
- Add ghee and mix well. Turn of the heat.
- Pour the mixture on a silicone mat or a greased plate to let it cool.
- When cooled to touch (but still warm) massage well to make a soft dough. (you might have to grease your palms with ghee).
- Grease modak mould well and press the small quantity on pistachio mixture in the mould. Remove the modak and let it rest.
6. Urad Dal Modak
- Take half a cup of chopped jaggery, cooked urad dal, one-fourth of water and stir it well until the jaggery melts.
- Mix jaggery syrup with mashed urad dal. Add grated coconut.
- Boil water and add rice flour. Keep stirring it for 3-4 minutes.
- Mix the content with dough and start shaping them in small balls.
- In the end, steam them in a pan and garnish them with rose petals.
7. Motichoor Modak
- To begin making the Motichoor Modak recipe, sieve the besan. To this add in salt, orange food colour and ghee.
- Mix them well. Next, add in water, little by little & make them into a smooth batter. The consistency should be like thick dosa batter.
- Heat oil in a wok/kadai and just before making the boondis, add in the baking soda & give a quick mix.
- When the oil is hot, using a perforated ladle making the boondis as shown in the picture. When they are 3/4th done, remove them & drain them in a kitchen towel. Repeat the same procedure until done.
- When boondis are done, allow them to cool down completely & grind them into a coarse powder.
- Heat sugar and water in a Kadai/wok on medium flame. When it reaches the one string consistency, add an orange food colour and switch off the flame.
- To the coarsely powdered boondis, add in the crushed almonds, melon seeds, salt, rose water, cardamom powder, saffron & ghee. Mix them roughly.
- Then add in the sugar syrup little by little and you will end up in using in all the syrup. Mix them well. Cover this and leave it aside for 15 to 20 minutes so that the boondi absorbs all the flavours.
- After 20 minutes, mix them again with your hands. Take a modak mould, grease them with ghee lightly, fill in the boondis. Make them into modak shape. Keep in the fridge for some time and then serve.
8. Strawberry and Coconut Modak
- Cook sugar and strawberry and cinnamon stick till sugar is dissolved and the mix has thickened. Set it aside.
- Lightly roast the khus khus.
- Add coconut and keep cooking on a very low flame.
- After a minute, add jaggery.
- Allow the jaggery to melt and cook till the mix forms into one mass and is dry.
- Sprinkle the elaichi powder and salt. Mix evenly.
- Mix the fillings and keep them for later
9. Shahi Coconut Modak
- Add the grated coconut and jaggery to a heated pan, greased with ghee.
- Keep stirring for around five minutes. Add nutmeg and saffron and mix well.
- Keep cooking for another five minutes and the filling is ready.
10. Modak Payasam
- Use the filling from Shahi coconut modak to make the filled modaks. (Step given above)
- Add sugar and cardamom powder to the boiling milk and boil again till the sugar dissolves completely.
- Next, add all the modaks to the boiling milk slowly and allow to cook for 8-10 minutes.
- Turn off the heat, cool the modak payasam before serving.
Serve various fillings together and pump up your Ganesh Puja celebration.