Today we enjoy some delicious steamed Modaks, which are called ‘Ukadiche Modak’, in Maharashtra. How about trying this special modak recipe right away?
I personally call my version – the ‘Modak Puff’. The outer casing is a flaky melt in the mouth, puff pastry with a traditional coconut filling on the inside. After four days of struggling to get the dough right, I finally got it right – seeing the puff in the end just made it worth the wait.
One thing I learnt from this exercise was that puff pastries require a LOT of patience but once you get it right, you can’t help but do a little jig to celebrate your success! I used Gordon Ramsay’s ‘Rough Puff Pastry’ recipe, while making a tiny alteration by adding lime juice.
250 gms Maida
1 tsp fine sea salt
250 gms Unsalted butter, at room temperature, but not soft
About 150ml cold water
2 Tbsp lime juice
Sift the flour and salt into a large bowl. Roughly break the butter in small chunks, add them to the bowl and rub them in loosely. You need to see bits of butter.
Make a well in the bowl and pour in about two-thirds of the cold water, and lime juice mixing until you have a firm rough dough (do not overwork your dough, that will activate the gluten) adding extra water if needed. Cover with cling film and leave to rest for 20 mins in the fridge.
Turn out onto a lightly floured board, knead gently and form into a smooth rectangle. Roll the dough in one direction only, until 3 times the width, about 20 x 50 cm. Keep edges straight and even. Don’t overwork the butter streaks; you should have a marbled effect.
Fold the top third down to the centre, then the bottom third up and over that. Give the dough a quarter turn (to the left or right) and roll out again to three times the length. Fold as before, cover with cling film and chill for at least 20 mins before rolling to use.
Roll out a small portion of the dough to a desired sized square.
Place the coconut filling in diagonally and fold the square across such that it forms a triangle.
Butter the baking tray and the top of the pastry.
Bake at 200ºC for about 15-20 mins or until it is golden brown.
Heat ghee in a pan. Add the poppy seeds, cardamom powder and nutmeg powder. Saute for a minute.
Now add the grated fresh coconut and powdered or, grated jaggery.
Mix it well and cook this coconut-jaggery mixture on a low flame. The jaggery is likely to melt first.
Stir at intervals and cook this mixture till the moisture from the jaggery begins to dry. Switch off the flame soon after. Don’t overcook, as the jaggery will harden. Keep this coconut-jaggery filling aside.