Well you don't need any occasion to enjoy these Ladoos (balls). They are so delicious and healthy too. Why healthy? They are refined sugar-free, give you energy and have the goodness of dates and foxnut (makhane). When I was a kid, I used to relate foxnut with popcorns....hehe! Well foxnuts (makhane) are actually lotus flowers seeds which are puffed. They are very nutritious and has medicinal properties too!They are low in calories and high on vitamins and minerals. Foxnuts are a good source of antioxidants, protein, magnesium and fibre. They can be eaten raw or roasted or can be blended with other ingredients. It has almost a nude taste, but distinctive, so they blend well with many ingredients. And they are gluten-free as well. I used them in powdered form to make these dates energy balls (khajoor ladoo) even healthier. These ladoos (balls) has a very nice sour and sweet taste. The addition of lemon brings out a fun element in these ladoos (balls). And they are vegan and gluten-free too! So try them this festive season and cook the natural way!!
2 cups dates (deseeded and chopped)
1 tablespoon raisins (heaped)
2 cups foxnuts (makhane)
1/4 cup cashewnuts (coarsely grounded)
1 tablespoon coconut oil (or ghee)
seeds of 4 green cardamoms (crushed)
1/4 cup water
1. In a pan, dry roast fox nut (makhane) on medium flames till they are crisp . Keep on stirring to avoid getting them burnt. It may take 4-5 minutes. Keep aside to cool. Once cooled, grind them into powder. Keep aside.
2. Now in a blender, blend together dates and raisins with water and make a thick paste (chunks of dates (if there) are fine).
3. In a pan, heat oil (or ghee), fry cardamom seeds till fragrant. Then add dates paste and lemon juice. Cook for 2 minutes or until it gets thicker. Turn off the gas and spread the dates mix onto a plate to cool.
4. When cool enough to handle, add cashewnuts and fox nuts (makhane).. Mix well and make equal sized ladoos (balls). Enjoy!!
Makes 12-15 ladoos (balls)