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Figs & Coconut Halwa

Ganesha's grace abounds. My site is back up and running with a new look, thanks to Elizabeth Hillstrom, a bright young student who has made this happen for me. It is a simple and easy to navigate layout and I love the look of it :) - I am also operating from, should you prefer a WP format - And if you like the work of this young girl, and the recipes you see showcased, don't hesitate to like us on Facebook :)
Ganesha is remembered every single day in my house, in the most delightful way for me – In that I get to be him every day, sometimes once often twice a day – My soon to be 4 yr old loves the Ganesha stories she has heard and watched from Karadi Tales. She is always Parvati and I get to be Ganesha, who guards zealously her gates as she takes the most leisurely bath in the world, using up all the water of the ganges J - And Hubby dear gets to be Shiva who confronts Ganesha before lopping off his head – the whole scene is enacted each day with no variations allowed, unless the variation has the little one bursting into giggles. My Shiva does a stellar job of showing rage – his whole face vibrating, jaws jiggling (lol) Lots of fun, but I think we are ready to move on to a new act. But not before we celebrate the joyous day when we offer our salutations to our potbellied, elephant faced, single tusked lord of wisdom who removes obstacles – In fact it is the remorse of Shiva for having lopped Ganesha’s head off that makes him bestow upon his son the boon that he would be revered first before Shiva himself. Ganesha loves food, especially sweet dumplings aka Kozhakattais/modhakams or so the story goes. Gourmets like us love to make this an excuse to prepare modakams rice flour shells stuffed often with jaggery and coconut, or jaggery and lentils.
For this occasion, I chose to add a slight twist to the tradition, while still upholding it, by adding freshly picked figs.  This enhanced if anything the already delicious dish by giving it a fantastic flavor. It turned out like a most delectable halwa that could be devoured just like that – Which is why I called it a Halwa. Halwa is best defined as a sweet sticky dessert often made with flour and nuts and fruits. This dish has the nut and the fruit.

I am happy to that a post of offering to Ganesha is my first one for the Avant Garde Cookies group that I am now a part of.

Here is my offering to Ganesha recipe and all.


For the Stuffing

  • 16 Ripe or almost ripe Figs
  • 1 cup of grated Coconut
  • 1 cup of jaggery
  • 1 tsp of powdered cardamom
  • 2 tsp of water

For the dumpling shell
  • 2 cups of rice flour
  • 1 cup of water
  • A pinch of salt
  • 1tsp of sesame oil

Fresh Grated Coconut

Fresh Picked Figs

  1. Powder your jaggery – they usually come in blocks and can be found at the Indian store
  2. In a saucepan, add 2 tsp of water and the jaggery
  3. Let it become syrupy
  4. Add the powdered cardamom
  5. Follow it with the coconut and let it cook in the jaggery until the water from the jaggery is completely gone and the mix is thick and stuffable
  6. Remove from flame and allow it to cool

  1. In the meantime, sift the rice flour
  2. Roast it for literally a minute in a wide pan
  3. Now add the water and salt and what I do is spin it once in the blender so that it is a pasty fluid
  4. Pour this liquid into a saucepan and stir away until the rice flour cooks
  5. Stirring helps avoid knots in the dough
  6. When the white fluid thickens and comes off the sides, add the oil
  7. The color will not be white anymore and the dough will have assumed a cooked look.
  8. Switch off and cover with a cloth so that it does not dry out.

Both these processes take no more than 10 -15 minutes flat – I kid you not.

  1. Now Let’s get them together
  2. So make lemon sized or even smaller balls with the dough. Put your thumbs in the middle of the ball and start pressing the sides, creating a dippy hole in the middle.
  3. Make sure this is deep and the sides are thin without falling apart.
  4. Now take a teaspoon of the stuffing and place in the hole.
  5. Gently fold the sides pulling up with your fingers to make a small tuft, so to speak.
  6. The other method is the make a smile –
  7. Make a round flat circle with the dough.
  8. Add the stuffing and fold joining at the corners, pressing them together. Both kinds are shown below.
  9. Steam them and you have your Kozhakattais 

Offer to the Good Lord Ganesha before you pop one into your mouth J Happy Chaturthi Folks and May Lord Ganesha obliterate any obstacles in your life.

My first Avant Garde Cookies Post 

Linking this to Cook Like a Chef


DivyaGCP said...

Love the new look of the space..Love the twist given to the traditional kozhukattai stuffing.. Lord Ganesha will be very pleased.. :)

Divya's Culinary Journey

Roshni said...

Really interesting post Priya... and love the 2 ganesha's that you have made with vegies and dal...

Priya Sreeram said...

omg- this one is a stunner priya; totally loved the stuffing inside- sounds like a winner. Hey the ganesha-shiva anecdote is really sweet. I love the tusker god and this post has me all tingling :)BTW welcome to the AVC

tamilsasikitchen said...

Mothagam looks yum....And ganesha's made with veggies and dal are really wonderful and looks lovely....

Amarendra said...

Its really a great variation in Modak. I am definitely going to try this one for Ganeshjis prasad.

Vijayalakshmi Dharmaraj said...

very different n really very healthy one dear...

Ramya said...

enjoyed reading the Ganesh shiva play from your home:-)
Fig halwa look too irresistible. I have to try it!

Priya said...

Saw your both creative idols with dals and veggies in Fb Priya,loved it..Very unique and very yummy halwa.

PriyaVaasu said...

Delicious and healthy. Loved the veggie Ganesha!!! Dal Ganesha looks very cute!!!! Super healthy Stuffing for mothagams!!!!

divya said...

tht's looks so tempting ...yum

Raksha said...

This is a really nice post and a very good offering. I liked all the creativity you have put in the Ganesha's here.

Priti S said...

Looks so yum ...wonderful idea and both Ganeshji looks fab

revathi said...

That is incredible Priya... I love the delicious twist to the modakam filling.. truly delicious..
The tomato Vinayagar looks so cute.. loved it..

Archana Potdar said...

Its beautiful all of it the Ganesh thta you have made with veggies a with and with the dal.
Love the delicious halwa and the modak.

I am hosting Bake Fest all through Sept ’12. Do send me your entries
I am also hosting Fast Food Not Fat Food 1st Sept to 15th Oct ’12. Do send me your entries

Shailaja Reddy said...

Totally new filling and love it.

The Yogi Vegetarian said...

I love your new look,the wonderful pics on this post, and most of all, the recipe itself! Fresh figs are so tasty and so healthy- I miss living somewhre where you can just pick them off the trees, as they don't thrive well in the UK. Hope you had a lovely Ganesh festival and thanks for sharing :)

Shama Nagarajan said...

Super likes...Join me in Know your Flours-Corn Flour , Fast Food - Pasta event , Know you natural Sweetness - Honey events in my blog

Alida said...

Beautiful neat and elegant site. I really like it.
And I like the wonderful things you have created here. You are a very good cook.

Swathi Iyer said...

Love the new look of your blog. coconut and fig halwa looks delicious.

ansh said...

Love those Ganeshas! Love the look of the blog too!! Have a happy Ganesh Chaturthi!

Elisabeth said...

Awesome step-by-step photo instructions...happily following your blog!

Kaveri Venkatesh said...

My first visit to your space after you moved to your own domain....Looks very good.

Love this innovative and interesting poornam...looks very delicious. Happy Ganesh Chathurthi to you too

Chitra said...

Unique stuffing. u made the kozhukattai healthy :)

Rumana Ambrin said...

Looks really delicious...

Sangeetha Nambi said...

real healthy and tasty halwa for sure... Love the Vinayagar creative clicks... Mainly the second pic... :)

simple baking said...

Hi Priya,
Thank you so much for entering this into our Cook Like a Star blog hop. Love this version of your halwa with fresh figs. Lord Ganesha will be mighty pleased :D
Thanx once again for joining us in this blog hop.


Rinku Naveen said...

Never thought of halwa with figs. Looks so tempting Priya. And loved the 2 Ganesha's you made

Nupur said...

Ohh am so tempted to make this today.. I shall surely try this weekend and send you the link .. cant take my eyes off this picture Priya

Hey , please try and participate in my new event

Cook with-Poppy Seeds

Amrita Vishal said...

Hi Priya, lovely combination. Loved it.

Rashida shaikh said...

I'm visiting first time after you moved here...Neat and well organized site.
be in touch...

Radhika said...

Hats off to the neat and clean design. Love it even more... The halwa. Mmmm looks so delicious.

Zoe said...

Hi Priya,

This is very lovely dessert but pardon me for asking if this is a Masterchef related recipe.

Please let me know. Thanks.


pappa said...

Hi Priya, I was surprised and thrilled to the new look of the web site. I was about to send your blog to Meena Vaidy whom I was talking to her last week. It was a designed very nicely. Did you know that the recipes can be view in Tamil. how is my cute,litte petthi doing?


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