Aralu, Hodalu or Puffed paddy is made by roasting paddy itself. Usually we see puffed rice in the market. Puffed paddy is very rare to find nowadays. It has a very important role in any divine occasions like marriage, Ganapathi havan, Nag Panchami or chauthi festivals in our region.
Normally we don’t eat rice preparations during vrath (fasting) and Aralu fits the bill. Aralu or puffed paddy is prepared by roasting the paddy in an iron tawa. Usually in villages, they do it in an open air. Normally, in open air, wood fire setting will be laid, iron tawa is heated uniformly by putting little sand into it. When sand becomes hot, fist full of dried paddy would be dropped and tossed regularly until paddy puffs and bursts into white popped rice. It is not cooked or done by using water and it is done by roasting. That is the reason it is considered as Pure /auspicious thing and used in prasadam or any divine purposes.
We can make this and use as a regular energy ball as well. It has all the goodness that our body needs. It fits the bill as #eatlocal #healthy #natural #ironrich #fibrerich #refinedfree #holistic #glutenfree #healthysnack #kidfriendly as well.
We normally get puffed paddy in two forms. Either whole or powdered.
Here in this laddu, I have used powdered form. If you have whole paddy, nothing to worry. Make powder by using mixer jar and use it.
I have used chikki jaggery which is also known as Antu bella. One can use normal jaggery as well.
Powdered puffed paddy – 1 ½ cup
Jaggery – ½ cup (I have used chikki jaggery)
Black Sesame – 2 tea spoons
Broken peanuts – 3 to 4 table spoons
Ghee – 2 table spoons
Water – 2 table spoons
Cardamom powder – ½ to 1 tea spoon
-Clean puffed paddy powder, by removing any leftover paddy husks and keep it ready.
-Dry roast peanuts, remove outer skin and make it into halves or use roasted and halved peanuts itself.
-Dry roast sesame seeds as well.
-Dilute jaggery in water by boiling. When jaggery melts, sieve and collect. In this way, we can discard the impurities from the jaggery.
-Take one thick bottomed kadai, add jaggery solution, 1 table spoon of ghee and boil until it reaches one thread consistency.
-If you are confused with this stage, take one small tumbler, filled with water. Drop the jaggery mixture and see. If jaggery becomes hard when it drops, and you can make a ball when you press and rotate it by placing in between your thumb and forefinger.
-Mix in puffed paddy powder, roasted sesame, peanut halves, cardamom powder, remaining one table spoon of ghee and mix everything.
-Switch off the gas.
– Apply little ghee on your palm and start making roundels. Sometimes, In-between If it cools down completely, it doesn’t bind, and you can keep the vessel on fire, re heat a little and proceed and finish off the mixture by making roundels.