Today being Krishna Jayanthi or Janmashtami, marks the birth of Lord Krishna and is celebrated by Hindus all over the world. However, people from the Southern parts of India celebrate this festival in the month of Aavani (8th September, 2012). Like all other festivals food forms the central theme and there are specific dishes that are unique to this festival. They include savories like Seedai and Murukku and sweets including Suzhiyan and Vella seedai. It is believed that baby Krishna comes into the house to take a share of the yummy food prepared and the naughty child that he is leaves behind soiled foot prints. To mark his arrival, in most household it is customary to imprint tiny feet using a dye prepared with rice flour. Even though my family celebrates Krishna Jayanthi in September, here is a early Krishna Jayanthi special, simple sweet dish called “Suzhiyan” prepared with coconut and jaggery. Its very simple to make and is delicious.
I have substituted some of the traditional ingredients with things that we find locally in grocery stores. For example: I used brown sugar instead of jaggery since most American grocery stores carry brown sugar. Also, I used all purpose flour instead of maida flour.
Brown sugar – 1 cup
Coconut shredded – 2 cups
(If you like it extra sweet you can add a couple of extra tsps of brown sugar. But this proportion should work fine)
Cardamom powder – ¼ tsp
Ghee – 1 tsp
For the batter:
Maida or all purpose flower – 4 tsp
Salt – one pinch to just bring out the sweetness.
Turmeric – one pinch
1. In a pan on medium heat add brown sugar, coconut and cardamom along with half cup water. Now cook all the ingredients until all the water evaporates and the filling becomes sticky and thick.
2. Let it cool and roll them into small balls (you should get about 16 balls with the above mentioned measurements)
3. Batter: In a bowl, add all purpose flour, salt and turmeric and mix it to a dosa batter consistency ( Enough to coat the ball but not too thick)
4. Deep fry in oil on medium heat until it turn golden brown. It only takes 15-20 seconds because the stuffing is already cooked and its only the outside batter that needs to be cooked.
Tips for deep frying: when you drop the balls in hot oil it causes a lot of frothing and bubbling and once the bubbles settle down its an indication that the dish is cooked.