The Maharashtrian hospitality is legendary. The cuisine has subtle variety and strong flavours and varies from region to region. In ancient times in the more affluent homes, feasts often started at mid-day and ended when the sun set! The presentation of food was alluring with a practice to sing sacred verses to dedicate the meal to God.
Maharashtrian cuisine covers a wide range from being extremely mild to very spicy dishes. Wheat, rice, jowar, vegetables, lentils and fruit form important components of Maharashtrian diet.
Everybody knows about the unbeatable taste of the Mumbai’s chaats! But there is so much more to explore and savour in the other regions of Maharashtra.
Heat 1¼ cups of water with salt and 1 teaspoon oil in a deep non stick pan.
Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and add the rice flour in a steady flow, stirring continuously to prevent lumps from forming. Cover the pan with a deep lid and pour some water into the lid. Cook on low heat for 3 minutes.
Remove the lid, sprinkle some cold water on the rice flour and cover again with the lid with water in it; cook for another 3 minutes. Repeat this process twice more. Take the pan off the heat and keep it covered for 2 minutes.
Transfer the mixture to a large plate (parat), grease the palms of your hands with oil and knead the dough till completely smooth and pliable. Dissolve the saffron in 2 tablespoons of water and add to the dough. The dough should not stick to your palms. Rest the dough covered with a damp cloth.
To make the stuffing, combine the coconut and jaggery in a non stick pan and cook on medium heat for 2 minutes or till light golden brown. Make sure that you do not overcook the mixture. Add the dates, roasted poppy seeds, cardamom powder, and mix well. Remove from heat and set aside to cool. Divide the coconut mixture into equal portions.
Divide the dough into equal portions and shape them into balls. Grease the palms of your hands and spread each ball to form a 3 inch bowl and the base should be as thin as possible. Do not press the edges of the bowls to reduce the thickness.
Place a portion of the stuffing in the centre; pleat the edges of the dough and gather them together to form a bundle. Pinch to seal the edges at the top.
Now the extra dough remaining on top of it repeat the same method as done for the base modak very carefully. Pinch to seal the edges at the top.
Heat sufficient water in a steamer. Place the modak on a perforated plate in the steamer and steam for 10-12 minutes.
To make the jasmine sauce, remove the jasmine petals and wash them thoroughly. Boil ½ cup water and add sugar to it. Let it boil. Cool the sugar syrup and add the
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