Nutella and Oreo Truffles
THEME: #208 MEETHE BANDHAN
This week India will be celebrating both Raksha Bandhan day and Independence Day on the same date – 15th Aug.
What is Raksha Bandhan?
Raksha means protection and bandhan means to tie. India and Nepal are unique in the sense that the Hindus celebrate Raksha Bandhan every year during the holy month of Shravan. This is a special day for brothers and sisters. A bond that is so special between both. I know there are some families where sister brother bond is a bit frayed because of differences. However, eventually they come round and look out for each other. Raksha Bandhan symbolizes the eternal bond between a brother and sister, they can be blood related or not. I know of people from different faiths and yet they celebrate this eternal bond. You may say we don’t need a special day to remind ourselves of the love between a brother and sister, but it just gives us an opportunity to celebrate it with good food, gifts, good wishes and keeps family bonds alive.
As the sister ties a rakhi, which can be just a simple cotton thread or a gold bracelet round her brother’s wrist wishes him good health and prosperity, the brother in return vows to protect her and she also gets a gift from him.
According to the Hindu mythology the following are the main reasons given for celebrating Raksha Bandhan:
- Lord Indra was about to be defeated during the war between gods and demons, and his wife Sachi asked Guru Brihaspati for help. Brihaspati instructed her to tie a sacred thread around Lord Indra’s wrist. Sachi tied the sacred thread around Lord Indra’s wrist, and consequently, the gods were victorious.
- When Lord Krishna cut his finger, Draupadi tore a strip from her saree to bind the wound. In gratitude, Krishna promised to become her protector. He came to her rescue by covering Draupadi with endless yarns of cloth when Dushasana tried to disrobe her. It is believed that Lord Krishna treated Draupadi like a friend and his little sister.
- Demon King Bali was a great devotee of Lord Vishnu. Lord Vishnu took up the task to guard his devotee’s kingdom and left Vaikunth. Vishnu’s wife Goddess Laksmi, missed him and wanted him to come back to Vaikunth.She went to Bali disguised as a Brahmin woman to seek refuge till her husband came back. During the Shravan Purnima celebrations, Laxmiji tied the sacred thread to the King. Upon being asked she revealed who she was and why she was there. The king was touched by her goodwill for his family and her purpose and requested the Lord to accompany her. He sacrificed all he had for the Lord and his devoted wife.Thus the festival is also called Baleva that is Bali Raja’s devotion to the Lord.It is said that since then it has been a tradition to invite sisters in Shravan Purnima for the thread tying ceremony.
- It is said that the Raksha Bandhan was a ritual followed by Lord Yama (the Lord of Death) and his sister Yamuna. Yamuna tied rakhi to Yama and bestowed immortality. Yama was so moved by the serenity of the occasion that he declared that whoever gets a rakhi tied from his sister and promised her protection will become immortal.
When I was young, I was encouraged by my mum to tie rakhis also to my cousin brothers and as a result the bond between my cousins and me is still very strong. In this modern age distances as people live in different countries, doesn’t help as we can’t be together always to celebrate raksha bandhan. However, I make sure I still post the rakhis, try and call them and make something sweet on that day. It has been over three years since I had that opportunity. However, I know for sure that my brothers along with my bhabhis are always there for me. It is such a comforting feeling and I feel so blessed. Modern technology has made it easier to stay in touch with siblings and I use it to the fullest.
Message to all my wonderful brothers and bhabhis:
I thank you so much for the unconditional love and support. You may not be near me always but you’re always in my heart. Thank you so much for all your understanding and support, always. Wishing you all the happiness in the world and may Lord Krishna bless you with good health and happiness.
To celebrate this Meethe Bandhan, a theme suggested by Archana, I was curious to find out how she celebrates the day in Goa. What better place to find out than her blog, The Mad Scientist’s Kitchen. She suggested anything sweet or savory to celebrate the sweet relationship between a brother and sister. I was totally surprised when she chose to make French Onion Soup to celebrate Raksha Bandhan a few years ago. If you read the post then you’ll understand why she chose that recipe.
As for me, though I will not be with my brothers and cousins this year too, what did I decide to make? Something easy and sweet of course as we are a family with huge huge sweet tooths…. teeth…whatever! I just love teasing them with photos of delicious chocolates or desserts every year. Doing the same this year! evil me …heheee! 😉
On a serious note, as I was browsing on the internet I came across this clay rakhi that Ferns N Petals in India sell online. The clay rakhi contains seeds of vinca rosea (periwinkle) which has medicinal value too. I love that idea. Usually, after a certain period of time the brother removes the rakhi and leaves it near a tulsi plant or is thrown away in the water body. Hubby has a whole bagful of rakhis from his sisters that are not biodegradable! The clay rakhi comes with a bamboo basket and a packet of soil. Once you remove the rakhi, plant the rakhi in the soil which you’ve tipped into the bamboo basket and the seeds will grow. I’m definitely going to send these next year to my brothers if they ship them outside India.
NB: I’ve not been paid by Ferns N Petals. This is just my opinion and I liked the idea so thought of sharing it here.
NUTELLA AND OREO TRUFFLES
36 Oreo cookies
1 cup Nutella
1 cup (8oz) cream cheese
- Crush the Oreo Cookies in a food processor till it resembles bread crumbs.
- Add cream cheese and Nutella and process for a few minutes till everything is mixed.
- Take about a tablespoonful and roll into a ball. Put the ball on a lightly greased tray.
- Repeat step 3 till all the mixture is used up.
- Put the truffles in the fridge for 30 -60 minutes till they set and become a little hard.
- Serve them chilled as dessert or as a snack.
- Roll them in chopped hazelnuts or any nuts.
- Roll them in chocolate sprinkles, colored sprinkles.
- Roll them in cocoa powder.
- Dip them in melted chocolate, leave on a parchment paper to set in the fridge or paper cups.
- Store them in the fridge in an airtight container as it has cream cheese in it.
- Add flavoring of your choice like vanilla, orange etc. I just loved the flavour of hazelnuts from the Nutella.
- These truffles are ideal as gifts, for baby showers, for festivals, as a snack in between meals, as a dessert.
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You may want to check out some other recipes which I made for Raksha Bandhan Day:
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