Authentic Bengali Sweet Chandrapuli
Bijaya Dashami(Last Day of Durga Pujo), when the youngers take blesses from the elders, men greet each other by hugging. After the blessings, greetings, hosts welcome their guests with sweets & snacks like 'Rosogolla, Naru, Nimki & <strong>Chandrapuli</strong>'. In this recent time, we don't have musch time to prepare the items & sweets ourselves, they are store bought, and nowadays the sweets shops are very much aware of the fact thet people became very busy to prepare such time consuming items, so they are also selling nimki, <strong>chandrapuli</strong>, naru etc at their shops. But traditionally our Grand mothers used to prepare those items at home for 'Bijoya Dashami'. They used to make Tokti, <strong>Chandrapuli</strong> by making paste of coconut, chhana, khova in morter & pastle and by using moulds they give nice shapes. Me and my nieces used to sit beside Didu(Grandma) while she used to prepare all the items, our wish was to taste before those were served to the guests. We knew very well, after the serving to the guests there would be nothing left for us. And <strong>Chandrapuli</strong> was one of my most favorite sweet among all. <strong>Chandrapuli</strong> or any Sweets are not very easy to make. But now days we have to live outside Bengal, and Bengali without sweets, none can even think of that. So we manage some time to prepare the authentic sweets at home to welcome our guests on the special day.
Chandrapuli is an authentic Bengali sweet. This sweet is made with 'Chaana/Cottage Cheese, Khova/Mawa/Milk Solid, Scraped Coconut & sugar Or Jaggery'. This sweet is must for Durga Pujo(Bengalis' Biggest Festival). Chandrapuli is little sweeter than the other Bengali Sweets. As coconut, mawa is added with chhana, that makes this sweet, sweeter. But so what, we Bongs love sweets, right! And the shape is half moon so the name is like this, 'Chandrapuli', Chandra means moon and puli means Pithe. Because 'Chandrapuli' is not like the typical sondesh . It's kind of Pithe. Where coconut and khova is being used. Traditionally in Sondesh only Chana and sugar/jaggery will be the key ingedients. In sondesh, there will be no khova/mawa. So let's see how to make Chandrapuli.
Ingredients for Chandrapuli
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Preperation steps for Chandrapuli
Take the 'Chana' in a plate, mash with your palm like making atta dough. Kneed to make soft and smooth dough.
Now take the Mawa/Khova, if you can grate it, just grate and mix with the chana. If it is not gratable, just mash using your palm.
Add jaggery too & mix with the soft chana dough well. Now put a non-stick or thick bottomed pan on low heat.
Add 1 teaspoon ghee to the pan. Add the dough to the pan and stir the mixture with an wooden spatula to evaporate the excess moisture of the dough.
When the dough will be sticky take 1 tablespoon of the dough from the pan and try to make small ball of the dough. If no crack will seen on the surface of the ball and it will look smooth and pain, your mixture is ready for the next step.
Take the mixture out of the pan and put in a clean plate. Let the mixture cool down completely.
When the mixture will be completely cool down, add the ground coconut & freshly ground cardamom in the mixture and again start kneading the mixture. If the mixture will be like a dough then it's ready to make Chandrapuli. But you have to warm it before molding.
If the mixture will look like messy, again put it in a pan on low heat and evaporate the excess moisture.
Now let the mixture to cool down little bit, like touchable. Take the mold, put some ghee on it, apply some ghee on your palm, and rub.
Take 1 tablespoon mixture in your palm, make a cylinder Take the ghee applied mold, put a raisin in the middle of the mold and put the cylinder shaped mixture on the mold and shape it by pressing on the mixture.
Make rest of the Chandrapuli, sprinkle chopped Pista on them and put them inside the refrigerator.
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If you could not get the molds, just make round or cylinder shaped fudges. Taste will not change without the mold.
Please watch the process of making Chana here.