The Journey Of Ladoos From A Medicine To One Of India’s Favourite Dessert

If there’s any sweet I can’t hold back at one, it is Motichoor ladoos. There’s something about the melt-in-mouth and delicious sweet that tantalizes my irresistible sweet tooth every single time. The word ‘Motichoor’ literally translates to ‘crushed pearls’ and is quite justified as no sweetmeat is as precious to me as Motichoor ladoos. The round-shaped sweet is made with tiny balls of gram flour. Gram flour is first made into a batter and then deep-fried in ghee or oil. These balls are then soaked in sugar syrup and moulded into round-shaped globules. 

If we go back in history, it is believed that ladoos were originally invented for medicinal purposes in the 4th century BC. Its origin is attributed to Susruta, the father of Indian surgery and medicine. He used to prescribe Til Ke Ladoo for its antiseptic properties to his surgery patients. These ladoos were prepared with sesame seeds, jaggery and peanuts. Further, ladoo is mentioned in Kannada literature in 1516 AD and is also found in every painted or sculpted Ganesha figure in most ancient architectural marvels like the Lingaraj Temple of Bhubaneswar.

It is believed that ladoos were initially traditional desserts of Bihar and the Northern regions of the country and later transcended borders due to their durability and deliciousness. These sweets were seen to gain popularity in almost all parts of the country. From torrid regions like Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh to irresistibly cold temperatures like Jammu, ladoos survive in almost all temperatures and regions. Does packing ladoos for long journeys make sense now? 

Traditionally, ladoos were made with Khoya, Ghee and jaggery. However, the introduction of sugar created a culinary revolution and ladoos were no different. The addition of sugar increased the sweet quotient, making ladoos more desirable and luring. 

Now that you know the history of ladoos, you know who to thank the next time you go for one extra Laddoo. We know that the festive season is arriving and you are already planning to make ladoos. Here is an easy recipe that you can follow to make scrumptious Motichoor ladoos at home.