The auspicious festival of Ganesh Chaturthi starts today (September 10, 2021). It is one of the most significant festivals among the Hindus where devotees worship Lord Ganesha for health, wealth and prosperity. This 10-day extravaganza is marked across different states of India like Maharashtra, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Goa, Kerala and Tamil Nadu. Besides all the rites and rituals, food plays a significant role in the celebrations. It is believed that Lord Ganesha loves modaks and laddoos. This is why devotees prepare a wide range of delicacies to offer bhog to their beloved deity, and later enjoy it as Prasad.
Simultaneously, these ghee and sugar laden mithais often make several health-conscious people dread the festival season. What if we say we have a perfect solution to this problem? We bring some amazing alternatives to the famous Ganesh Chaturthi staples that will help you indulge guilt-free.
Ganesh Chaturthi 2021 Special: Here're 4 Healthy Dessert Options For You:
The Traditional, Steamed Modak:
Ironically, the later iterations of this famous sweet - like mango-flavoured and chocolate modaks - have compromised its health benefits. The original, traditional modak is made of three ingredients - rice flour, coconut, and jaggery. This minimalism makes the dish healthy and nutrient-rich. Additionally, when you steam your modaks, you ensure that you do not consume an unhealthy amount of oil.
For even healthier modaks, you can experiment and try out different stuffing like adding sliced fruits or nuts.
Coconut And Til Laddoos:
We all know that motichoor laddoos are a festival staple. But they do not have to be at your house. You may think you need to cut out laddoos altogether, but the good news is there are alternatives - coconut and til laddoos.
When you use grated coconut with a small amount of jaggery, you make healthy laddoos that increase energy exponentially. Meanwhile, for a closer texture to motichoor, you can use til or sesame seed with jaggery for getting a delicious treat that is super healthy as well.
A Ghee-Free (Well, Not Entirely) Puran Poli:
While the notion of a ghee-free Puran Poli may seem like heresy to the ones who love this famous Maharashtrian sweet, you should remember that reducing the ghee makes this sweet much healthier. Puran Poli is made with yellow gram and stuffed with cardamom (elaichi), coconut and jaggery. All these ingredients are healthy and good to add to your diet. If you reduce (not completely remove) the amount of ghee you top it off with, you are in for a healthy treat!
The best part is you can add as much ghee as your guests want without it affecting your health at all.
No Ganesh celebration is complete without Sheera. You can make this popular sweet healthier by reducing ghee and substituting sugar with dates or bananas. What better time to start experimenting than during the festival which famous for its heavenly sweets?
As we can see, there are several healthy alternatives to your favourite sweets, which are just so delicious. As long as you practice mindful eating and tweak your recipes, you can maintain the spirit of Ganesh Chaturthi without affecting your health.
Happy Ganesh Chaturthi 2021, everyone!
Author Bio: Chef Jasneet Kaur is the founder of Blue Apron.
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