by Lavina Kapoor
My earliest childhood memory and perhaps my favorite dates to when I was three years old. My mom had asked me to call my brother to the dinner table where she had laid a plate of rotis, laddus, gur (jaggery) and a generous dollop of ghee. I remember talking to myself that I would just take a bite (in a hurry to go out and play). But, I never made it to my brother’s room.
After a while, I was caught finishing off his dinner, and not at all sorry for doing so for I could not be blamed: the flavor of gur was just so heavenly. To this day, the rustic, earthy smell of it rewinds the clock and takes me back to those days. Also known as jaggery in English, ‘vellam’ in Tamil, ‘sharkara’ in Malayalam, ‘bellam’ in Telugu, ‘bella’ in Kannada and ‘gul’ in Marathi, jaggery is basically unrefined sugar obtained mostly from raw, concentrated sugarcane juice.
My mouth literally drools at the thought of it and I can’t help but wonder why my parents used to give me jaggery, especially during winters. The simple fact is that this natural sweetener offers a host of health benefits. Being rich in vitamins and minerals, this healthier alternative to sugar boosts immunity, is an excellent source of iron, keeps the body warm, controls body temperature, boosts digestion, and helps treat cold and cough.
Being a mother of two, there’s nothing that could hold me back from trying a few jaggery recipes for kids. Here are my favorites:
1. Cereal and Jaggery Ladoos for My Chota Bheems
I remember how my Chota Bheems would jump with joy when I make these round sweet bombs which I never felt guilty of serving to them. These wholesome ladoos are rich in vitamin A, iron, omega fatty acids, and protein. A perfect way to satisfy your li’l one’s sweet cravings in a healthy way; isn’t it?
1. ½ Cup organic jaggery powder
2. One cup muesli
3. 2 Tbsp roasted almond powder
3. One tsp ghee (Clarified butter)
4. ½ Tsp cinnamon
5. 2 Tbsp roasted cashew powder
6. 2 Tbsp desiccated coconut
1. Dry roast muesli and grind it coarsely.
2. Add organic jaggery powder by Slurrp Farm, roasted muesli, cashew powder, almond powder, cinnamon and ghee in a bowl. Mix them together until they start binding.
3. Rub some ghee on your hands and start rolling small balls out of the prepared mixture.
4. Decorate with desiccated coconut and serve.
Jaggery is an excellent source of iron and boosts digestion.
NO Preservatives, NO additives, just 100% Organic goodness.
2. Jaggery Rice
Looking for something filling, yummy and healthy? This orangish amber-colored rice recipe ticks all the right boxes. It can be served as a snack, dessert, or even as a meal to toddlers and kids. Generally, you will love it plain but it also tastes as nice when mixed with a little milk.
1. ½ Cup rice
2. 1½ Cups water
3. ½ Cup jaggery
4. ¼ Tsp cardamom powder
5. 2 Tbsp grated coconut
6. One tsp raisins
7. One tbsp cashews
8. ½ Tsp dry ginger powder
9. 2 Tbsp ghee (clarified butter)
1. Mix jaggery with ½ a cup of water and heat on a slow flame until honey-like consistency is achieved.
2. Put washed rice in a pressure cooker and add 1 cup of water. Let it cook on medium flame until 3 whistles. Fluff the rice once they are ready.
3. Strain jaggery syrup on the cooked rice and cook on a medium flame until it gets absorbed by the rice.
4. Add grated coconut, dry ginger powder, and cardamom powder, and mix well.
5. Cook for 2 more minutes and add ghee, raisins, and cut cashews.
6. Mix everything together and serve.
Pro Tip: Using organic jaggery powder by Slurrp Farm is a novel idea. It’s free from impurities and lumps and can give a delicious twist to all your recipes. With that said, watch your tiny tot relish the jaggery dishes you prepare and ask for more.
About Lavina Kapoor: A connoisseur of all things healthy, Lavina Kapoor is life-long health, nutrition, and fitness enthusiast. She ventured into the world of health and nutrition 6 years ago with an effort to touch like minds. Her writing focuses on offering useful tips and information on the importance of sticking to a healthy lifestyle.