Mood: When it comes to India, it’s always festival season! Raksha Bandhan, Holi, Eid, Navratri, Durga Puja, Diwali, Christmas, Navroz and many more! India is truly a melting pot of different religions, traditions, languages and cultures and the best part of our beautiful secular identity is that no matter what background we come from, we celebrate the festivals of our fellow Indian brothers and sisters as one big harmonious community! These celebrations bring people together for joyous merry-making, often shared over a generous feast of traditional Indian savoury dishes and delicious desserts. Aka, the Annual Year-Long Big Fat Indian Food Binge. And while crispy salty snacks are well and good, the real thing that people look forward to is a nice hearty box of decadent and indulgent sweet treats! Of all the Indian desserts (there are many!), my favourite one is definitely the humble and beloved ‘Ladoo’. A Ladoo (also known as Laddoo or Laddu) is a traditional sphere-shaped Indian dessert that comes in various colours and flavours and can be found all across the country. No matter what region or religion you come from or what festival you’re celebrating, the simple Ladoo is a constant feature in any Indian celebration. From fancy confectionaries to the local sweet shop on the corner of the street, the Ladoo brings joy to one and all:) But alas! The traditional Indian Ladoo is not vegan or dairy-free and is often loaded with butter, ghee, flour, sugar – quite delicious but not very healthy;) And that’s where my plant based recipe comes to the rescue! This recipe is ridiculously simple, requires just 4 ingredients and it’s not just vegan, but also oil free, gluten free and refined sugar free. SCORE! And even if you’re not celebrating a festival but instead just looking for a simple treat to satisfy your sweet cravings; the healthy ingredients in this recipe make the Ladoos double up as delicious energy bites – the perfect snack on the go:) Soft. Chewy. Sweet. Salty. Crunchy. Healthy. Satisfying. I hope you enjoy these Delicious Nutty Vegan Ladoos! My plant based ode to the Humble Ladoo, the sweet treat that truly encapsulates the secular and inclusive spirit of Incredible India:)
Recipe YouTube Video: Check out my YouTube video to see how to make the recipe:)
Time: 10 Minutes
Serving Size: 12 Pieces
Category: Dessert; Snack
Author: Animagus Eats
• 1 cup Dates (deseeded – approx. 8 large dates)*
• 1 cup Toasted Pecans*
• 1/3 cup Grated or Desiccated Coconut (+ more for rolling)
• 1/4 – 1/2 tsp Sea Salt (to taste)
1. Add the soft deseeded dates to the food processor/mixer and blend till they have broken down to form a soft somewhat smooth texture. Scoop out the blended dates and set aside for later.
2. Add the pecans and sea salt to the food processor and grind till you have a somewhat course mixture (if you blend it too much or too fine then the nuts will start to get oily).
3. Add the blended dates back to the nutty mixture along with the grated coconut and a dash of sea salt if needed (to taste). Blend the mixture is combined well.
4. Scoop out the mixture from the food processor and knead the dough in a bowl until the ingredients have mixed well.
5. Take a small portion of the dough and roll it into a perfect ball:) Repeat the process for the rest of the mixture.
6. Sprinkle extra grated coconut on top of the Ladoos and roll the Ladoos around in the shredded coconut topping until they’re well coated with the coconuty goodness:) And voila! Your Nutty Vegan Ladoos are ready to be served:) Even though they are best enjoyed fresh at room temperature, the healthy Ladoo Energy Bites can be stored in the fridge in an air tight container for 3-4 days! Happy Eating:)
Made the Nutty Vegan Ladoos for Durga Puja 2019:)
*If you’re using Dates that were stored in the fridge, then first soften the dates by keeping them in a bowl of hot water for 20-30 mins. I used Mejdool Dates:)
*If you’re toasting the Pecans at home, then toast them in the oven at 180°C (356°F) for 5 mins (keep an eye on them to make sure they don’t burn!). I have only tried this recipe with Pecans, but you can try it with Walnuts, Hazelnuts, etc:)