Monday, August 31, 2009


Ganesha Chaturthi celebrates the birthday of Lord Ganesh, the Lord of success, education, knowledge, wisdom, wealth and destroyer of evils and obstacles. The festival is celebrated in the Hindu month of Badrapadh (mid-August thru September) for ten days. It is celebrated with great show and pomp in Maharashtra and is an important festival in most parts of India.

Lord Vinayaka (Ganesha) loved food, especially a sweet called modakam, also known as kudumulu, kadubu, kozhakottai. To appease Ganesha, modakams are prepared on this day as Prasadam (offering). This dumpling like, steamed pastry can be filled with a variety of fillings like poornam (lentil paste), sesame filling, peanut filling or the most traditional of all, coconut filling.

I made these recently for the festival. Even though these were not the most perfect of modakams I decided to share it with you. All that matters is that they taste good, right???


• 2 cups rice flour

• ½ tsp oil

• A pinch of salt

• 1 ½ cups grated coconut (fresh or frozen)

• ¾ cup crushed jaggery

• 3-4 cardamoms crushed

In a microwave safe bowl melt the jaggery with a tsp of water for 2 minutes on high in the microwave. Add the cardamom powder and coconut and mix well. Microwave for another minute, remove and cool.

Bring 2 ¼ cups of water to a boil and add the salt and oil. Reduce the heat to low and dump the rice flour into it and cover it with a tight lid. Remove from heat. After 3-4 minutes, mix the mixture well with a wooden spoon to form a dough ball. Oil your palms and make 1 inch balls and set aside covering it with a damp cloth.

On a surfaced smeared with a little oil roll out the dough into 4 inch rounds. It will be a little tricky since the dough can be sticky to work with.

Lift it gently and hold it in your palm. Add a tsp of the filling in the centre. Gently gather the sides over the filling and pinch it together. Dip finger in water and gently smooth over any crack that form in the process. Gently mold it into the classic modak shape- like a Hershey’s kiss. Cover the prepared modaks with a damp cloth till all are done.

Steam these for 8-10 minutes in greased pans. Make sure they do not touch each other while they are steamed.

1 comment: