Traditional Indian sweet balls prepared with sesame seeds, jaggery, and cardamom powder are known as til ke laddu or sesame ladoos. These sweet balls are high in iron and calcium and have a nutty flavour.

Makar Sankranti is observed on January 14th in several areas of India. While the event is known as Uttarayan in Western India, it is known as Lohri in Punjab, Pongal in Tamil Nadu, and Magh Bihu in Assam. Gujarat also lights up the sky with colourful kites during Uttarayan, which is definitely one of the best times of the year.

It is the first celebration on the calendar for the year, and it is highly anticipated by many. Given India's richness and diversity, it's no wonder that Sankranti is celebrated in several ways. This event is celebrated for more than just spiritual reasons. There are also deep scientific and cultural grounds for joy.

Related: How to make delicious Gujarati Undhiyu for Uttarayan

Makar Sankranti-

According to Hindu astronomy, the Sun enters the Makara Rashi (Capricorn) on Makar Sankranti. On the 14th of January- Makar Sankranti, the sun stops moving southward and begins its trek northward (Uttarayan). The return of the sun to the Northern Hemisphere on Makar Sankranti signifies the end of a long winter, thus the name Uttarayan.

It marks the end of winter and the start of spring when the trees begin to turn green again, flowers blossom, and the temperature warms up. Sankranti marks the start of the agricultural season, and people all across the country rejoice. It's no wonder, therefore, that this holiday is generally celebrated and hailed with delight by the farmer community, who pray for abundant harvests every year on this day. 

The Significance of Til Ke Laddu or Sesame Seeds

Sesame seeds are widely used in most places throughout the festival, which is one of its most notable features. But what is the significance of sesame seeds? Read on to understand the significance of sesame seeds on Uttarayan.

In Hindu mythology, til (sesame seeds) is said to have sprung from Lord Vishnu's perspiration and dropped to Earth. As a result, it is said that using it will wash away sins. Furthermore, sesame seeds are revered as a symbol of immortality since God Yama is claimed to have blessed them. Sesame-seed delicacies are thus regarded as a must-have during Makar Sankranti. On this day, inscriptions propose six methods to use til (sesame seeds), including offering them or donating them to charity. 

Here in Gujarat, we make til ke laddu, chikki, and rewdi from sesame seeds.

Til ke laddu recipe-

Traditional Indian sweet balls prepared with sesame seeds, jaggery, and cardamom powder are known as til ke laddu or sesame ladoos. These sweet balls are high in iron and calcium and have a nutty flavour. Til ladoo, ellu urundai, ellu unde, and nuvvula undalu are all names for sesame ladoos. Here let's see how you can make til ke laddu at home-

Til ke laddu- Ingredients:

  • 1/3 Cup Roasted Sesame Seeds
  • 1/4 Cup Roasted, Crushed Peanuts
  • 1/4 Cup Desiccated Coconut
  • 1/2 Cup Grated Jaggery
  • 1/4 Tsp of Cardamon Powder

Til ke laddu: Step-by-Step Process

  • In a pan, take 1/2 cup grated jaggery. Add 3 tbsp. of water to the mix.
  • Keep the pan on low heat on the burner. Continue to mix the jaggery until it melts.
  • Simmer the jaggery and water syrup over a low flame. It will begin to bubble initially.
  • Continue to heat the jaggery solution until it reaches the softball stage. Continue to stir constantly.
  • Fill a small bowl halfway with water to test the softball stage. Pour a small amount of the jaggery solution into the water. When you take it out, it should be sticky and form a softball.
  • At this time, remove the pan from the heat and add all the dry ingredients i.e., toasted sesame seeds, desiccated coconut, crushed peanuts, and cardamom powder.
  • Combine the dry roasted mixture and the jaggery solution rapidly and thoroughly.
  • Begin forming and shaping til laddu from the ingredients while it is still hot. If it's too hot, wait a minute before forming the laddu.
  • Make sure to form the laddu when the mixture is hot. The til ke laddu will not be able to form if the mixture cools down.

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