Guilt-free Diwali

Indulge your sweet tooth, but with these oats-based recipes by GAURAV MASAND for a healthier Diwali this year

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Oats Laddoo

Atta ke laddoo or pinnis are rich and tasty sweet treats. They are one of the easiest of preparations when you want something sweet yet healthy. Oats laddoo is our Aussie take on it.


Ingredients
2 cup oats, powdered using a mixer
½ cup ghee
¾ cup nuts
3/4 cup desiccated coconut
3/4 cup powdered sugar

Heat a pan and dry roast oatmeal for 10 minutes on low flame or until rawness disappears.
Keep stirring to avoid burning.
Then add ghee along with nuts and desiccated coconut.
Mix well for a few minutes, then turn off the heat.
Add powdered sugar and mix it all well.
Make equal sized laddoos or balls out of it before the mixture cools off.
Store in an airtight container.

Oats chikki

Chikki or brittle is a traditional Indian recipe which is an essential at Diwali. It is made in many variants with coconut, peanuts and even with chana dal (split bengal gram). Here we make it with oats, nuts and dried berries.
You can also make a vegan version by using olive oil. For best results, cook the jaggery until it turns brittle as mentioned below in the recipe.

Ingredients
1 cup oats
½ cup nuts (almonds, walnuts), chopped
¼ cup dry berries (blueberry, goji berry)
1 ¼ cup jaggery
1 tbsp ghee or clarified butter
1 tsp cardamom powder

Dry roast oats for 10 mins on low flame, then keep aside.
In a pan, add ghee and jaggery; mix on low flame and stir for 10 minutes.
In bowl of water, add a drop of hot jaggery to check if it is brittle. If not, cook further for a few minutes and retry the same process.
Add cardamom, oats, nuts and mix well.
Switch off flame, add the berries.
Spread mix on baking paper or a greased tray. Press evenly using a rolling pin.
Draw desired incisions using a knife. Allow to cool, and then break along the incisions. Store in an air tight dry jar.

Oats Dhokla

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Ingredients
1 cup oats
½ cup semolina
½ cup yogurt
½ cup water
1 tbsp ginger-chilli paste
1-1/4 tsp eno fruit salt
½ tsp sugar
Salt as per taste

For tempering
2 tbsp oil
1 tsp mustard seeds
1-2 slit green chillies
Handful of curry leaves

Dry roast oats for 10-15 mins on a low flame and then grind into a coarse powder, keep aside.
Dry roast semolina for 10 mins on low flame, keep aside.
Mix all ingredients into a smooth batter except eno fruit salt.
Grease a dhokla pan (or bowl) with oil.
Add eno fruit salt to batter and mix well. Pour the batter into the greased bowl.
Steam for 15-20 mins or until cooked.
Allow to cool, cut into pieces.

For tempering
Heat oil and add mustard seeds, curry leaves and chillies.
Spread this mixture on the steamed dhokla.
Serve hot with chutney.