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- Rice Flour – 3/4Cup (120gms)
- Water – 3/4Cup (150gms)
- Ghee – 3/4tsp
- Sugar – 1/4tsp + 1/8tsp
- Salt – 1/2Of 1/8tsp
- Grated Coconut – 1/2Cup (100gms)
- Jaggery – 1/4Cup (70gms)
- Poppy Seeds – 1/4tsp
- Cardamom Powder – 1/8tsp (2 Cardamoms)
- Nutmeg Powder – 1/8tsp
- Rice Flour – 1/4tsp
- Raisins – 5
- Cashew Nuts – 3
- Ghee – 1tsp
Heat a pan and add poppy seeds and fry on low flame for 1 1/2minutes stirring continuously. Roast poppy seeds till they turn golden in color. Coarsely crush the roasted poppy seeds using mortar and pestle.
Grate nutmeg and get powder—measure and keep it aside. Crush cardamom pods and remove seeds and crush seeds to powder using mortar and pestle. Cover the cardamom powder and nutmeg powder to retain the aroma till used.
Break cashew nuts into small pieces. Grate jaggery and keep it ready.
Heat a pan and add ghee and heat ghee. When ghee is hot add raisins and fry stirring till they fluff up fully. Remove raisins and add cashew nut pieces and fry stirring till they turn golden in color. Remove cashew nut pieces and add grated jaggery to the remaining ghee and stir till it melts fully. Then add grated coconut and mix well. cook coconut and jaggery mixture on low flame stirring for 3 1/2minutes. Add fried cashew nuts and fried raisins along with cardamom powder, nutmeg powder and rice flour and mix well. Spread the prepared stuffing in a plate and cool.
Heat a pan and add water, salt, sugar and ghee and allow water to boil. When water starts boiling switch off flame and add rice flour and mix well. Cover the pan and let the dough rest for two to five minutes. Take the dough on to a rolling board and knead well to form soft dough. Best way is to knead the prepared dough mixture using a food processor as we need to knead the dough while it is still hot. Take the dough and form 12 equal balls and cover them so that they are warm till use.
Add water to a steamer or a pressure cooker and place a perforated plate inside. Take a perforated bowl and line it with a cloth or parchment paper and place this bowl in pressure cooker or steamer and heat it to develop steam inside.
Divide the stuffing mixture into 12 equal portions. Take a modak mould and smear ghee inside well. Close the modak mould and hold it upside down with left hand to see the hollow portion. Take a dough portion and separate around 1/4th portion and keep it aside. Take the 3/4th portion of dough and place it in the hollow portion of greased mould and press it along the sides with wet fingers to coat the mould evenly forming a hollow portion to place stuffing mixture. Once the dough portion is evenly pressed to the walls of the mould take a portion of stuffing and fill the modak mould. Now take the remaining 1/4th portion of dough and cover the top portion with it to seal the modak. Carefully open the mould and remove the prepared modak and place it in a plate. In the same manner prepare all the modaks. Now open the steamer lid. Dip each modak in water and place it on the cloth in the perforated vessel. Similarly place all the modaks. Cover the steamer and if using pressure cooker remove the weight and cover with lid. Cook modaks on low flame for 10 minutes. Remove modak mould and observe that modaks turn slightly translucent on the outer surface. Keep them in the bowl for few minutes and then take them into serving plate. Serve modaks after offering them to Lord Ganesha on Ganesh Chaturdhi day.
Points To Observe:
For the measurements given above we get 12 modaks with reasonable thickness of dough and sufficient stuffing.
Adding salt to the dough balances the sweet of the stuffing.
If jaggery is not good then add some water and then melt it and then strain the solution to remove dirt and then use it. Remember to cook the stuffing mixture till it is dry.
Roasted and crushed poppy seeds provide a subtle taste to modaks.
Adding raisins and cashew nuts is optional. One can even make the stuffing without using any nuts or fruits. One can even add nuts and raisins without frying them in ghee but fried ones give better taste.
Grate nutmeg freshly to get powder instead of store bought nutmeg powder for better taste.
Add few pinches of sugar while crushing cardamom seeds to get fine powder.
Rice flour added at the end absorbs extra moisture from the stuffing.
Remember to knead the dough mixture while it is still hot to form dough. As there is no gluten in rice flour it breaks easily. So when dough is warm or hot then it stretches easily to shape modaks. So cover the dough vessel till use so that it retains the temperature and keeps the dough warm.
Grease the mould with ghee so that the modak comes out neatly from the mould.
Seal modak properly otherwise stuffing comes out while steaming modaks.
Spread cloth or parchment paper in the perforated vessel so that the modaks do not stick to the vessel while steaming.
Traditionally modaks are made without using any moulds to shape them. But one needs to master the art of making modaks with fingers. As there is no gluten in rice flour the dough breaks easily while shaping the modaks. One needs to shape the modaks using oil and water on fingers. Easiest way of shaping modaks is to use mould.
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