Simple and Scrumptious Sweets | Eid 2018
The last night of Ramadan is always bittersweet. It's time to bid farewell to the special month, to the late nights at the mosque and the spectacular iftar spreads. I remember many last nights of Ramadans, eagerly wrapping presents, spotting the delicate Eid moon outside and, of course, smelling the sweet smell of Eid treats wafting in from the kitchen.
Then comes Eid (or as I used to joke as a child, 'Eat'). Eid is the time to pat yourself on the back for following through on the commitment to fast for thirty days. A literal manifestation of the verse in the Quran that states 'with hardship comes ease' (94:5). A time for family, bottomless tea and revolving platters of traditional sweets.
Of those sweets, the following are some of my favourites. Traditional Sri Lankan delicacies that are surprisingly easy to make and are the ones I find myself making now, thousands of miles away from the Eids of my childhood.
Sweet Sesame balls | Tala Guli
3 cups sesame (black and white)
1 cup grated jaggery
1/3 cup water
Pinch of salt
Roast the sesame over a low flame, stirring regularly. Once the sesame starts to emit its aroma (20- 30 mins), take it off the heat.
Grind 1 cup of the sesame until it becomes a thick paste.
Lightly grind another 1 cup until sesame is coarse.
Melt jaggery over a medium flame, adding water as needed to make a thin sauce.
Add a pinch of salt to the mixture.
Combine the jaggery mixture and the sesame.
Form small balls or logs with the mixture. For the finishing touch, wrap in baking sheet squares to give a toffee wrapper like look!
And there you have it! You can find jaggery and your local Indian or spice shop. If not, you can resort to coconut treacle or brown sugar.
Coconut Stuffed Crepes | Surutapum / Pani Pol
1 cup milk
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 cup flour
1 1/2 cup freshly grated or desiccated coconut
1/2 cup grated jaggery
6 cardamon pods, deseeded
3 tblsp water
Pinch of salt
Whisk egg, milk and turmeric together.
Add flour in intervals and whisk until you get a smooth batter.
Let it rest for 15- 30 minutes.
Cook the crepe on a pan until it's just cooked on each side to ensure maximum softness!
Melt jaggery with water, salt and cardamon seeds.
If using desiccated coconut, add a little hot water to soften it. Combine coconut and jaggery mixture.
To assemble, place coconut filling in a line on the crepe. Roll the crepe up to create these sweet coconut rolls.