Diwali Ki Mithai: 5 Gujarati Sweets To Ring In The Festivities
Image Credit: Basundi

Festivities in India are incomplete without the desi mithais. Our obsession with sweets is known to all. Each region has their own set of unique sweet meats that are prepared at home during festivals. Come Diwali, many North Indian homes are filled with the sweet fragrance of laddoos and barfis. In Gujarat, too, one finds their regional specialties being served to guests.

While Gujarati cuisine is often regarded as slightly sweet in taste, it is during occasions like Diwali that the mithais start cropping up into the small containers, being hidden away from family members to be served to guests later. If you manage to pop in a Mohanthal or Ghari once in a while, consider yourself lucky. Here are a few quintessential Gujarati sweets that you cannot miss during this ‘festival of lights’.  

1.  Basundi

A classic pudding-like dish from the Gujarati fare, basundi is a cousin of the North Indian rabri. Not just Gujarat, you’ll also find basundi popular in some parts of Maharashtra and South India too. The milk-based dessert is made with sweetened condensed milk that is flavoured with cardamom and saffron. With a mildly thick texture, basundi is usually served chilled with a garnish of chopped nuts.  

2.   Golpapdi

A simple combination of wheat flour and jaggery, golpapdi is a quick and easy-to-make sweet Gujarati snack. Most Gujarati households make it during festivals like Diwali as it is hassle-free and can be easily popped into the mouth. Also known as sukhadi in Sindhi cuisine, gur papdi is another name given to the dessert since it is made with gur aka jaggery. The flour and jaggery are kneaded and given a biscuit-like shape, which is then set in the refrigerator. It is also popular in Rajasthan.

3.  Atte Ka Sheera

This is a rich and decadent dessert from the Rajasthani and Gujarati households. Whipped up during festivals like Diwali, sheera is nothing but another name for halwa. The thick pudding is made with a combination of wheat flour and ghee. Sweetened with jaggery, the dessert is stirred continuously to achieve the desired consistency. Topped with chopped nuts, atte ka sheera is a delightful festive treat.  

4.   Doodh Pak

As the name suggests, this Gujarati sweet is made with the goodness of milk. All you need for making this heavenly dessert is milk, rice and some sugar. A thicker version of kheer, the milk is usually slow-boiled for doodh pak after which sugar and other flavourings are added. Saffron lends a tantalising aroma while nuts add richness to the sweet dish.

5.  Mohanthal

This iconic sweet meat is not just a Gujarati treat but equally popular in Rajasthan too. The square-shaped bites are made differently in both the regions. While the Rajasthani sweet is made of khoya, the Gujarati version is made sans mawa. Gram flour is continuously stirred with ghee and milk till it attains a thick texture. Add chopped nuts to it and let it set in a steel thali. Slice into small pieces and enjoy.