Panjiri ( Navratri Collab with Delish Potpourrie and A Dollop Of That )
The fasting observed during Navratri is actually one such period of cleansing as prescribed by Ayurveda. Apart from eliminating toxins from the system, it helps to activate 'Agni' or the digestive fire which needs to be maintained at it's peak during the cold months. It allows the body to prepare for the onslaught of energy rich foods that are normally consumed during winter. No wonder the sales of ghee and dry fruits shoot up around this time of the year.
'Panjiri' is one such high-energy food that is normally consumed in the Northern parts of India and Pakistan. Made with whole wheat flour roasted in copious amounts of 'desi' ghee and sweetened with 'bura' or natural cane sugar, it is delicious and quite filling too. While a few dry fruits are a mandatory addition to any Panjiri recipe, a friend's mother-in-law makes one that consists almost entirely of dry fruits and especially 'phool makhana'.
Apart from the various dry fruits, one can also add spices like saffron(for a lovely aroma), ajwain (for digestion), soonth (for heat) and even fennel/cardamom. Desiccated coconut and edible gum (or 'Gond' ) is usually put into this recipe.
A few spoonfuls with warm milk is enough to keep one going through the winters. But since there is quite a bit of roasted wheat flour in this recipe, it transforms magically into an 'Atta ka halwa' with some hot water. Nice and easy. And also my preferred way of having the 'Panjiri'.
Read on for my version of 'Panjiri' -
[ Plus check out the two bonus recipes at the bottom of this post which are a part of the Navratri Collaboration !! ]
Preparation Time - 1 hour
- 2 cups whole wheat flour
- 1/2 cup ghee or clarified butter
- 1/2 cup bura or unrefined sugar
- 1 tsp soonth powder (dry ginger powder)
- 2-3 pinch saffron strands
- 1 cup Phool Makhana or puffed fox nuts
- 12 almonds
- 12 cashews
- 12 pitachios (optional)
- 2 tbsp poppy seeds
- 2 tbsp char magaz ( melon seeds)
- a handful of raisins
- 7-8 dry dates
- 3 tbsp edible gum
Preparation - Heat the ghee in a thick bottomed pan.
One by one, add all the ingredients mentioned under 'to be roasted and powdered separately' . Each one needs to be roasted separately as the required time varies.
The phool makhana should be roasted to a light brown. The edible gum should be puffed up adequately.
Once each ingredient is roasted, separate the dates. Transfer the rest to a mixer jar and grind into a fine powder. Chop up the dates into small pieces and add to the powdered dry fruits mixture while discarding the seeds.
Add the whole wheat flour to the same pan and roast it till it turns darker by a few shades. The smell will also change by this time. Finally add the 'bura', soonth powder and saffron strands to the roasted flour. Roast for another minute or two before adding the powdered dry fruits and chopped dates.
Remove from the flame. Let it cool down completely before storing in an airtight jar.
Do not forget to check out these amazing Navratri recipes by my blogger friends -
Parinaaz's droolworthy Carrot Milkshake !!
Saswati's lip-smacking Chenna Bara Tarkari !!
For still more Navratri recipes, do check out HERE :) !