Kesa Mithoi

Northeastern India encompasses a treasure of unique recipes that are lesser known across the country. Kesa mithoi is one such humble recipe from the house of Assamese traditional cuisine. Traditionally, rice flour is a very common ingredient used in many of the unique snacks & sweets made here in Assam. The most common among them are the guri (rice flour) pithas, like Til pitha or Tekeli pitha, that have reached quite a saturation in terms of their popularity.

Kesa mithoi is yet another unique rice flour sweet prepared in assamese households especially during rituals or religious festivals. The uniqueness of this sweet lies in its simplicity along with the richness of flavour. “Kesa” means raw in assamese and “mithoi” means laddoos or usually rice flour laddoos, which are soft balls made from uncooked rice flour mixed with freshly grated coconut, sugar or jaggery & ghee, with a mild flavour of cardamom. They are mainly offered as prasad during, puja(s) like Shri Krishna Janmashtami or in the Naamghars ( assamese prayer houses). The freshly made laddoos just taste divine, with slightly granular texture of rice flour smeared in ghee along with the crunch of coconut. These are made in two versions, one with sugar and the other with jaggery. I love the jaggery version more, as the jaggery adds more flavour and richness to it.

I tasted these laddoos for the first time in the prasad platter from one of our neighbours who is an assamese. The tempting mithoi(s) immediately caught my sight and I fell in love with it at the first bite itself. From then, I came to know all about this Assamese “Kesa Mithoi”. Another form of rice flour laddoo called “Poka Mithoi” is also prepared traditionally, which is made from dry roasted rice flour & jaggery mixed with some spices and which I heard to be harder to bite. Though I never tasted that, but I would certainly love to have one. I will share the recipe for this sometime later. For now, make this “Kesa mithoi” on this “Ganesh Chaturthi” as our Bappa is so much fond of laddoos that too made from rice flour and jaggery. I found this one a suitable recipe to please Lord Ganesha with minimal effort since the recipe requires absolutely no cooking. So, try these easy-to -make “mithoi(s)” on this auspicious occasion of Ganesh Mahotsav. The recipe is right below here : ๐Ÿ‘‡

RECIPE :

Ingredients :

1) Rice (ground to powder) or Rice flour (available in stores) – 2 cups.

2) Freshly grated coconut – 1 cup.

3) Sugar (powdered) – 1/2 cup.

OR

Jaggery (grated) – 1/2 cup.

4) Cardamom powder – 1/2 tsp.

OR

Rose water.

5) Coconut water or milk (if required) – 1/2 cup.

Preparation :

1) For grinding the rice, soak them for few hours. Spread over a tray and let it dry under the fan for about half an hour.

(Note : If you are using home made rice flour, you may use some aromatic rice variety for more flavour. I have used the joha rice variety available here in the northeast for a mild aromatic flavour).

2) Grind the rice to a smooth powder.

3) Take the ground rice in a bowl, add grated coconut and mix.

4) Add powdered sugar or jaggery along with the cardamom powder and mix with the rice flour coconut mixture very well using your hand.

5) If you are using sugar instead of jaggery, the mixture may be little dry. To make it moist, add or sprinkle little coconut water or milk which will help in binding of the laddoos or mithois.

( Note : Ghee (2-3 tsp.) is used traditionally in the mithois that will also help in binding the ingredients. However, I have avoided the use of ghee as I don’t prefer the taste of commercially available ghee.You may use it if you have good quality cow’s milk ghee , as per your choice).

6) Bring the mixture together using your hand and take small portions of it to make balls of any size you want.

7) Your Kesa Mithoi is ready to be served. They taste their best when consumed freshly. As the ingredients are uncooked, you cannot store them for long. However, you can refrigerate them for 2-3 days.

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