Ghotua Laddoo, reportedly served at Sidharth-Kiara’s wedding, is a Jaisalmeri special sweet dish. Made with gram flour, ghee, cardamom powder and saffron, these laddoos are known as the Taste of the City. Here’s everything you need to know about these golden sweets.
Of all the news coming out of Sidharth Malhotra and Kiara Advani’s Rajasthan wedding, perhaps the most interesting bit for foodies around the nation has been the tidbits we found out about their wedding feast. The feast featured dishes that Rajasthani cuisine is extremely popular for, like dal baati churma, but also included some rare gems from the city where the wedding was held—Jaisalmer. One such sweet gem, and the description is apt because it literally looks like a golden ball, is the Ghotua Laddoo that was reportedly served to the guests.
For those who are Satyajit Ray fans, Jaisalmer has always been known as the home to the golden fort or sonar kella. With its beautiful golden sheen, Ghotua Laddoo comes across as the perfect representation of the city. And guess what? The sweetmeat is popularly known as the Taste of the City, proving that it’s indeed the perfect representation of Jaisalmeri food.
Ghotua Laddoo is made of desi ghee and gram flour, with a generous addition of cardamom powder and saffron. Sounds simple enough, but the procedure isn’t. A gram flour batter is formed, then deep fried in desi ghee and soaked in sugar syrup. You’d think that’s it, but no. The soaked, golden droplets are then crushed with a local variant of mortar and pestle, seasoned with cardamom powder and saffron, and then turned into equal-sized golden balls of delight!
This cumbersome and specific method makes Ghatua Laddoo a Jaisalmeri special, and a few sweet shops around the city specialize in making it. The most popular one is Dhanraj Ranmal Bhatia’s sweet shop, where the Ghotua Laddoo recipe has been passed down 11 generations! While other sweet shops might also serve this Jaisalmeri delicacy, people line up to taste Bhatia’s Ghotua Laddoo. When you’re in Jaisalmer next, you must hit this spot right opposite the Fort for a taste of Ghotua Laddoo.
And if you want to try Ghotua Laddoos right now, you can of course whip some up at home with this recipe below.
1 cup gram flour
1 cup sugar
½ tsp cardamom powder
½ tsp saffron strands, soaked in water
Water, as required
Ghee, for frying
1. Mix the gram flour and water to make a thin batter. Make sure there are no lumps.
2. Meanwhile, put sugar and water in a pot to make a light syrup.
3. Heat the ghee in a large wok. Using a boondi ladle, pour a portion of the batter gently into the hot oil.
4. Place the hot sugar syrup you have prepared right next to the wok.
5. Once the boondi is fried properly, transfer it into the sugar syrup.
6. Let each boondi soak the syrup, then drain them into a large bowl.
7. Use a large mortar and pestle to gently grind and mix the boondis into a fine, thick paste. You can use a food processor for the initial grinding, but make sure you transfer the mix into a large bowl and do the mixing by hand to get a better feel of the laddoo blend.
8. Once the laddoo blend is ready to be formed, add the cardamom powder and saffron syrup and mix again.
9. Now, form equal-sized smooth laddoos with the mix. Serve the Ghotua Laddoos while warm or reserve it for later.