Sweet Coconut and Cranberry Boondi


This sweet is one of my favorites. It is made with a batter of Besan or chick pea flour that is fried then soaked in a sugar syrup. The basic part is the boondi (fried round balls of the besan batter) which you can turn into another sweet, the ladoo. Plain boondi can also be added to yogurt as a Raita.

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Sweet Coconut and Cranberry Boondi

Serves 6-8

Ingredients:

1 cup besan flour

1/2 cup water

1 cup sugar

1 cup water

saffron strands or few drops orange food color

1 tsp cardamom powder

1/2 cup sweet coconut flakes

2 tbs raw pistachio nuts, crushed finely

1/2 cup dried cranberries or Craisins

Ghee for frying

1 large slotted spoon or Boondi spoon

Method:

Sift the besan and add the water. Whisk well so there is no lumps. Make sure it is a easily pourable thin batter.

In a separate sauce pan add the sugar and 1/2 cup water and allow to boil. Turn off the heat when it reaches one string consistency. (See pic) Add a few drops of orange color or crush a few strands of saffron into syrup. Set aside.

Add ghee in a frying pan and put on medium heat. Hold the slotted spoon over the ghee and pour a ladle of the batter into the slotted spoon and allow it to flow through. Move spoon around gently. Do not move spoon around too fast or else we get long threads instead of round balls. This will take some practice. Allow to fry to a light yellow and with another slotted spoon scoop out boondi and drop into warm sugar syrup. Continue with rest of batter.

Mix the boondi in the syrup. It should absorb most of the syrup. Add cardamom powder.( At this stage if you pack them into tight golf ball sized balls it becomes ladoo.) Add the dried cranberry, pistachios and coconut. It’s done. As it stills it will become more dry and soak up all the syrup. Serve slightly warm.

Other variations- Instead of coconut and cranberries you can add raisins, chopped dates, almonds, cashews etc.

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