As I am ageing, pleasant warm memories of childhood days keep coming back to me on and off specially during festivals and family functions. The older I get the more I realise what an amazing childhood I had! Childhood is a time when everything is so magical ,the trees are higher, the colours are brighter and every new day is more interesting than the last. Those memories are most important keepsakes and I hold them very dear to my heart.
Vibrant memories of Ganesh Chaturthi or Ganesh Puja as known in Odisha flashes in my mind’s eye as I jot down this post. This festival being one of the most important festivals back home is celebrated with great zeal and enthusiasm. The air in our neighbourhood used to get festive 10 days prior to the Puja. The excitement of wearing a new dress, the colourful theme based Pandals, the aroma of the Boondi prasad, the beautifully crafted Ganapati idols, the smell of camphor and incense heavy in the air, a contemporary Bollywood number blaring from the funnel shaped loudspeakers in the pandals, the chanting of mantras and offering flowers to the idol during Pushpanjali, the ritual of keeping our books and pen infront of the Lord are so fresh in my mind. Each and every memory beckons me back to those carefree days as I take a trip down memory lane.
Lord Ganesha, the God of wisdom, success and prosperity is known to have a fetish for Modaks and Ladoos. Ladoos represent wealth and prosperity, in all his Idols and images Ganesha is shown holding a bowl of Ladoos in his left hand. Its the time to welcome Lord Ganesha to your home for happiness and prosperity as the festival is just round the corner.
Today on this auspicious occasion I am collaborating with Sweta of Oriyarasoi and Parinaaz of A dollop of that! and we present to you Ladoos which are a little different from the usual ladoo prasadams offered to the Ganapati Bappa. I have prepared Gajar Paneer ladoos or Carrot Cottage Cheese Ladoos with Coarsely grounded almonds, condensed milk and Rose water and finally rolled in dessicated Coconut. These divine truffles taste a lot like the ubiquitous Gajar ka halwa and the Paneer or cottage cheese in it gives a mawa like richness to them. 30 minutes and these gorgeous balls are ready, from grating the carrot to rolling the Ladoos.
A very Happy Ladoo making and a happy Ganesh Chaturthi to you all and please don’t forget to check out my blogger friends Ladoo recipes too!