Last Updated on June 4, 2015 by Chef Mireille
Rava Ladoo is a traditional Indian sweet that is quick and easy to make. A delicious dessert for any time, but especially during the Diwali season, to celebrate the Festival of Lights.
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What is a ladoo?
A ladoo is basically a sweet ball of goodness. It can be made with just about any combination of grains, lentils, fruits and/or nuts. Yes I said lentils.
In Indian cuisine, it is common to include yellow split peas, aka chana dal, and other lentils in these sweet balls.
There are many varieties of ladoos – no cook versions, fried versions, steamed versions and some that require minimal cooking. Most often, they are very quick and easy to put together as is these Rava Ladoo.
What is rava?
Rava is semolina, what in America is more commonly sold as cream of wheat breakfast cereal. It is commonly used in South Asian and Middle Eastern cuisine to make a variety of both savory and sweet delicacies.
If you purchase the semolina at an Indian or Middle Eastern market, you will find several varieties of rava/semolina. There will be coarse, medium, fine, extra fine.
I use the fine semolina for these rava ladoo, which is the most similar to Cream of Wheat, which will be more readily available to you at your local supermarket.
Tips & Substitutions
- Cashews is most traditional to use, however, I have an allergy to most tree nuts. Pistacchios are the one exception. You can easily replace the pistacchios with cashews or almonds.
- Use fine semolina or cream of wheat breakfast cereal.
- While making the ladoos, wet your hands a little so they do not stick to your hands while forming them.
Sweet and delicious, this is a perfect snack with Masala Chai.
- Heat 1/2 teaspoon of the ghee in a skillet and lightly fry the pistacchios for a minute until they become fragrant.
- Heat the rest of the ghee in a saucepan and fry the semolina on a low flame until it turns light brown.
- Add sugar and milk.
- Turn off the flame and mix until the mixture starts to stick together.
- Using a rubber spatula, fold in nuts and raisins.
- As soon as it is cool enough to handle, form into little balls.
- If they start to become difficult to stick together, wet your hands a little.
- Serve immediately.
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