Posted on August 22, 2020 at 8:51 am

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Ganesh Chaturthi Special: How To Make Ukadiche Modak

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Modak is lord Ganesha’s favorite sweet and made in many Hindu homes during the first day of Ganesh Chaturthi Festival.

The most popular variety of modak that is made is Ukadiche modak.

Which is from the Maharashtrian Cuisine. Today on this special day we are going to see  two ways of shaping modak – with mould and without the mould.

What is Modak?

Modak are steamed dumplings with an outer rice flour dough and a coconut-jaggery stuffing.

These sweet dumplings are also known as Ukadiche Modak in Marathi language.

The word ukadiche means ‘that which is steamed’ or ‘steamed’. The word ‘ukad’ also means steamed rice flour dough. So in simple English “Ukadiche Modak” means steamed modak.

Ingredients To Make Ukadiche Modak: 

For The Outer Modak Covering

  • 1 cup / 150 grams rice flour
  • 1.5 cups water
  • ¼ teaspoon ghee or oil
  • ¼ teaspoon salt

For Inner Sweet Filling Of Modak

  • 1 cup / 100 grams fresh grated coconut
  • 1 cup / 200 grams powdered or grated jaggery
  • 1 teaspoon cardamom powder or 6 to 7 green cardamoms, powdered in a mortar-pestle & husks removed
  • ¼ teaspoon grated nutmeg or ground nutmeg powder (jaiphal powder) – optional
  • ½ teaspoon poppy seeds (khus khus) – optional
  • ½ teaspoon ghee or oil
  • 1 tablespoon rice flour – optional

Steps To Make: 

Making Sweet Stuffing

  • Heat ghee in a pan. Keep flame to a low. Add poppy seeds. Fry for some seconds till the poppy seeds start crackling.
    poppy seeds frying in ghee
  • Then add grated fresh coconut, jaggery, cardamom powder and grated nutmeg. Mix well and cook this coconut-jaggery mixture on a low flame. The jaggery will melt first.

    added grated jaggery, coconut, ground nutmeg and cardamom powder

  • Stirring often cook this mixture for 7 to 9 minutes till the moisture from the jaggery begins to dry. Switch off the flame. Don’t overcook as the jaggery then hardens. Keep this coconut-jaggery filling aside. On cooling, the mixture will thicken more.
    coconut and jaggery mixture done and cooked well
  • You can also add a bit of rice flour to this mixture. This is an optional step. The rice flour helps to absorb moisture, if any from the filling. Keep the filling aside to cool.
  • adding rice flour to absorb extra moisture

Making Rice Flour Dough

  • In a pan add water, oil or ghee and salt. Keep it on the stove top. Let this mixture come to a boil.

    water boiling in the pan

  • Reduce the flame and add the rice flour gradually. Quickly stir and mix the flour with the water. Stir till all the rice flour is mixed with the water
  • rice flour mixed with the water
  • Switch off the flame. Remove the pan from the stove top and then cover this pan with a lid for 4 to 5 minutes.
  • heat switched off and pan covered with lid
  • Now take all the dough in a large plate or thali or in a bowl. Gather the dough together and begin to knead it.
  • after 4 to 5 minutes the rice flour mixture being kneaded
  • The dough will be hot when, you begin to knead. So apply some water on your palms and knead the dough. Knead the dough very well. If you feel the dough looks dense or hard or dry, then just add a few teaspoons of warm water and continue to knead.
  • kneaded to a smooth and soft dough

  • Make small balls from the dough. Roll the balls till smooth in your palms. You can also apply some water on your palms, while rolling the balls. Keep the balls covered with a kitchen towel. The balls should be smooth in appearance and should not have any cracks.

    shaped the dough in balls

    Making Modak Without Mould

    • Take a ball and flatten it with your fingers to a round disc or a shallow bowl shape. You can apply ghee or oil in your palms while flattening. Place the sweet filling in the center.

      edges pleated at the side

    • Flute and press the edges. Bring together all the edges and join them. Remove the extra portion of the dough from the top, if any. Shape and taper the top of the modak with your fingers.

      edges joined at the center and modak is shaped

      Making Modak With Mould

      • Grease the modak mould with a bit of ghee or oil. Then close or lock the mould. Put the dough ball inside the mould and press it so that a space is made. Place the sweet stuffing.

        stuffing placed inside the modak mould

      • Cover the bottom with a small piece of dough. Press and smoothen it sealing the modak.
      • Open or unlock the modak mould. Remove the modak gently from the mould. Shape all modaks this way with mould. Keep the shaped modak covered with a napkin so that the rice dough does not dry out. Make all the modak this way.

        modak shaped with the modak mould placed on wooden board

      Steaming Modak

      • Grease a steamer pan lightly with oil or ghee. Place the shaped modak in the greased pan with some space between them. Cover with a kitchen napkin.

        modak placed in a greased pan

      • Take 2 to 2.5 cups water in a pot, pressure cooker or an Instant Pot steel insert. Place a trivet or a rack. Heat the water on high flame until begins to boil. For instant pot, use the sauté option and let the water begin to boil.
        water being heated in a pot
      • The water should be hot or boiling when you place the modak in the large pan. Cover the pan and steam modak for 10 to 15 minutes on a medium-low flame. On the Instant Pot, use the steam function on high for steaming and keep the steam vent in venting position so that the steam releases while steaming. Use a stop watch to set the time to 10 or 12 minutes.

        modak pans placed in the pot for steaming

      • Once the ukadiche modak are steamed, you can drizzle a few teaspoons of ghee on them. Some modak may crack while shaping or steaming, buts it is fine. You can forgive yourself if you are making this first time.
        steamed modak
      • Offer the modak to Bhagwan Ganesha.
        modak or modakam

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