DATE & FIG LADOOS
This is a season for dates,anywhere you turn you see”California Medjool Dates” out here…..sure is the earliest sign of the holy month of the lunar calendar “Ramadan” fast approaching.Dates have been significant for the Muslims,dating back to many centuries ago when it was believed that the Prophet broke his fast or” Iftaar”(meal at the time of breaking the fast) with dates & water,the tradition continues even to this day where Muslims practice “Iftaar” and “Sahoor”(pre- sunrise meal before fasting begins) by consuming dates in one form or another.Dates are a staple fruit in the Middle East & its health benefits surely is catching up with the rest of the world,which is why they are so popular in the world markets these days.
Dates are packed with a good deal of energy,hence they are the bite size snacking options of today.They contain a lot of fiber,which is one of the reasons they are significant in this month of fasting for Muslims since when eaten they tend to fill up one faster,thus preventing overeating.The sugar present in them are natural sugars containg fructose & glucose & hence sustains energy,the complex carbohydrates in the dates also make them a slow digesting food much better than their fatty food counterparts,thus proving to be an efficient digestive aid for the ones fasting all day.To this day, I’m so touched with the Muslim tradition of fasting without a drop of water or food during the entire day & then breaking the fast at the time of “iftaar” which basically is to understand how the hungry & the less fortunate deal with this kind of starvation almost for a lifetime,hence their attitude of sharing their food with near & dear ones & the less fortunate ones during this time isconsidered as a token of gratitude to the Almighty.What better season to try this date recipe than during “Ramadan”, when its consumed in various forms to help the fasting person break the fast with light gentle food , so that all the toxins in the body is eliminated & healthy bones are built owing to its high content of Vitamin-B,Magnesium & Potassium.Its amazing how this gentle fruit also rehydates the body which has not sipped a drop of water during the whole day,especially in those areas where the sun’s rays completely dehydrates ones body.
Figs apart from having their own significance since Biblical times where Adam & Eve used Fig leaves to cover their body also is rich in fiber content, which aids in the easy bowel movement,hence combined the two nutritious fruits with a touch of Ghee from the Krishna charm of Hinduism & Voila here is this Sugar free,guilt free ladoo to please & peace:)
Dates- 2 cups
Poppy seeds- 2 tbsp
1.Pitted dates & figs are mixed together in a blender into a fine paste.(It is easier on you, if you coat the blender sides with a little ghee befoe blending since it becomes easier to remove the sticky mass)
2.Dry roast the poppy seeds & keep aside.
3.Dry roast the cashews & almond after slicing them fine with a knife or breaking them into little pieces( you can use any nuts of your preference here).Keep them aside.
4.Take a vessel add the ghee,then add the blended date-fig paste to it, then add the roasted poppy seeds & the cashews & almonds together.
5.Grease your palms with ghee & then makes small round shaped ladoos.They serve as energy bars when had with a glass of milk,any time of the day.
6.Enjoy the month of Ramadan with dates,since they are available in plenty during this season.It is also a nice healthy evening snack for children when they come back from school,which is sugar free yet packed with energy.