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In search of the perfect Diwali mithai

Posted Oct 27 2008 7:12pm
Diwali is often synonymous with eating sweets. This is a time when everyone is exchanging 'mithai dabbas'. Even if you just taste a bite of everything that comes home, you would have put on quite a few extra kilos by the end of the season!

Very often, the sweets that are gifted are made of dry fruits like almond, cashew and pista. They come in a gamut of designs and colors. But the taste is pretty much the same. After eating a few of these, the novelty wears off. You get tired of the taste.

This is however not true of the sweets traditionally made at home. Take the 'mohanthaal' for example. It is a traditional Gujarati sweet usually not available in sweet shops. Made with 'khova', wheat flour, ghee, sugar and broken almonds, the 'mohanthaal' is an all time favorite. You can eat it for days and yet not tire of it. A good 'mohanthaal' is soft and coarse and has just the right amount of sugar.
Mohanthaal
Another favorite is the 'ghughra'. The 'ghughra' is basically a layer of wheat dough filled with either a coconut or a 'khova' based stuffing , rolled over and deep fried. The 'ghughra' is also rarely available in shops and is usually made only at home.
Ghughra
There is something about homemade sweets that is missing in sweets that are bought from shops. You can eat much more of the homemade stuff than you can of the stuff bought from shops.

One problem of Diwali though is the amount of fried stuff you eat. Everything that is made is usually deep fried! For example, the 'pakvan' which is wheat dough arranged in layers with some ghee to hold the layers together and then deep fried in ghee. Even while writing that sentence, I put on about a kilogram! You can imagine what would happen if you actually ate a 'pakvan'.

But I guess its all right. This is one time of the year when it is ok to indulge. I guess I will make it up by a few extra rounds of swimming.

Happy Diwali!
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