Til Gud ke Ladoo

January 14, 2019mayurisjikoni


Festivals are always a memorable part of my travels to India. Last year we missed celebrating Makar Sankranti, Lohri and Pongal in India as we left before the 14th of January. However, what I remember is that whichever market area we passed by in Mumbai, the whole scene was a feast for the eyes. Colorful kites of all sizes, heaps of sesame seeds, varieties of gur or jaggery, ready made til gud sweets dotted the whole lane. We even got an opportunity to sample til gud chocolate barfi.

At the moment I’m in Nairobi trying to get our visas for US and Thailand. After all the tonnes of papers we carried from Mombasa incase they ask for some proof or the other, the US embassy didn’t even ask for one paper except for the passports. Now that in reality is scary as that means they probably know you better than you know yourself. We got the visas on Friday. Today we headed to the Royal Thai Embassy, thinking that applying for visas there would be a breeze! Well not exactly. They require a confirmed return airline ticket which we had from Bengaluru to Bangkok and back. However, they insisted that we should have the one for India too, i.e. the Mombasa Mumbai one! How silly! We showed our OCI card but that didn’t matter to them. What difference does it make to them when and how we get to India as long as we leave their country before the visa expires. So much drama!

I wasn’t sure I would be able to post a recipe for this theme, but when I got back home(a proper bachelors’ pad), I wanted to divert my mind from the morning events so decided cook something. Looked for ingredients to make some til gud ladoos and found all them! Both father and son cook so quite a number of ingredients are found in their pantry. One is a proper vegetarian and the other a meat lover. Extremes in one kitchen.

What’s the importance of having sesame seeds and jaggery during the makar sankranti/lohri or the different harvest festivals that are celebrated all over India. Both til or sesame seeds and gud or jaggery is considered to be perfect winter foods as they help to keep the body warm and increases immunity. Jaggery is rich in iron and Vitamin C. Also its believed that one should eat til gud and speak well or say good things to others.

Coming to the ladoos that I made, I read quite a few recipes before making them. Number one, one needs to add ghee to bind the ladoos. Without that it was not possible. Two, half a cup of gud was not sweet enough or I guess it all depends on the type of gud you get. I added a few dried cranberries to give the ladoos a slight sour taste.

Enjoy some Til Gud Ladoos, share them neighbors, friends and relatives and speak well throughout the year.


Makes 12-14

1 cup sesame seeds (til)

½ – ¾ cup powdered jaggery (gud)

¼ cup peanuts

¼ cup desiccated coconut

2 – 4 tbsp ghee

10 dried cranberries

  1. Roast the sesame seeds over low heat, stirring constantly, till they begin to crackle.
  2. Remove the seeds. Add the peanuts and roast them over low heat. Stir them constantly till they begin to split.
  3. Remove the peanuts. Add the coconut and roast, stirring constantly till it gives out aroma.
  4. Remove the coconut from the pan.
  5. Put all the roasted ingredients, ghee and cranberries in a food processor.
  6. Process till the whole mixture is fine and comes together like a paste.
  7. Take about a tablespoonful of the mixture and by pressing it in your fist, make a ball or ladoo.
  8. Work as fast as you can as its easier to form the balls. If the mixture becomes cold, just put it in the microwave oven for 30 secs or less.


  • Use a combination of white and black seeds.
  • Add jaggery according to your taste.
  • Can omit the dried cranberries.

Pin for later:

You may want to check out some Makar Sankranti recipes:

Gulachi Poli

Chocolate Sesame Fudge

Blog post

Tal and Mixed Nut Ladoos

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  • FoodTrails

    January 14, 2019 at 10:53 pm

    I loved the addition of cranberries to these traditional Ladoos!! Right on time, these Ladoos look so delicious!! It’s good that after so much running around you finally got your visas done!!

    1. mayurisjikoni

      January 14, 2019 at 11:07 pm

      Thank you so much Swaty.

  • The Girl Next Door

    January 15, 2019 at 6:26 am

    I love the combination of jaggery and sesame. Great idea to make laddoos using these two ingredients – they surely look delicious!

    1. mayurisjikoni

      January 15, 2019 at 11:33 am

      Thanks Priya, they were delicious.

  • themadscientistskitchen

    January 15, 2019 at 8:20 am

    I hope your Visa issues are resolved by now Mayuri.
    You are right the amount of Jagger needed depends upon the sweetness of the jaggery. I love the addition of cranberries. Must have tasted awesome.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      January 15, 2019 at 11:32 am

      Thanks Archana, the cranberries made it taste good.

  • Batter Up With Sujata

    January 15, 2019 at 12:22 pm

    Til gur ke laddu looks so inviting. Loved the use of cranberry in it. Cranberry definitely gives the laddu a different taste and flavour. Perfect share for sankranti

    1. mayurisjikoni

      January 15, 2019 at 4:05 pm

      Thank you so much Sujata.

  • Vidya Narayan

    January 15, 2019 at 6:12 pm

    The addition of cranberries is very interesting in this recipe and a little bit of khatta or tangy with sweet always elevates the taste (atleast for me). Hoping the visa issues get resolved soon and the Drama ends with a happy ending for you. Happy Sankranti to you and family.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      January 18, 2019 at 10:43 pm

      Thank you so much Vidya, we’re back in Mombasa with both the US and Thai visas. Getting ready to travel soon.

      1. Vidya Narayan

        January 19, 2019 at 4:52 am

        That’s good to hear! Safe Travels.

  • sizzlingtastebuds

    January 17, 2019 at 7:42 am

    glad you got your passport woes cleared. These til gud ladoos are so packed with nutrition.. perfect pick for the theme, and glad you could join us this week inspite of your very demanding scheudles

    1. mayurisjikoni

      January 18, 2019 at 6:56 pm

      Thank you so much Kalyani, couldn’t imagine not having til gud on makar sankranti so made these laddoos.

  • poonampagar

    January 17, 2019 at 8:17 am

    Sesame seeds and jaggery is a classic combo . These laddos are healthy and tasty for sure and the added cranberries must have made them even more delectable.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      January 18, 2019 at 6:55 pm

      Adding cranberries added a slight khatta taste and I agree with you these laddoos are healthy.

  • Sasmita

    January 17, 2019 at 9:07 pm

    Adding a bit of cranberries to the til gud ladoos is an wonderful idea di !!! Wanna pick n grab right away 😉

    1. mayurisjikoni

      January 18, 2019 at 6:53 pm

      Thank you so much Sasmita.

  • Veena Krishnakumar

    January 20, 2019 at 5:17 pm

    A twist to the traditional ladoo. Looks very inviting

    1. mayurisjikoni

      January 21, 2019 at 10:10 pm

      Thank you so much Veena.

  • PepperOnPizza

    January 22, 2019 at 6:27 pm

    How interesting, to add cranberries to the til ladoo. I like the way you use whatever ingredients are available to you, wherever you are, Mayuri! So glad the visas finally all got sorted out. I enjoy reading the stories in your posts! Sujata Shukla

    1. mayurisjikoni

      January 23, 2019 at 9:35 pm

      Thank you so much Sujata.

  • Preethi Prasad

    January 26, 2019 at 10:42 am

    Adding Cranberry to ladoos sounds so interesting.Love the twist you have given. Fabulous share.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      January 26, 2019 at 11:28 pm

      Thanks Preethi.

  • Seema Doraiswamy Sriram

    February 2, 2019 at 2:06 pm

    i love the fainthint of sourness that the cranberries provide and the adorable nuttiness of the sesae seeds. they are all coming together with the perfect sweetness of the jaggery, a winning recipe indeed.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      February 14, 2019 at 4:00 pm

      Thank you so much Seema, the addition of cranberries was definitely a taste changer.

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