Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Amaranth Seeds Chikki (brittle)

I have always loved chikkis. What exactly are chikkis? They are similar to peanut brittle but softer than a brittle with peanuts crushed a bit smaller but still crunchy. I first got hooked on to them when I was in a boarding school. There were three schools on the campus and there was this canteen which sold several different things but my favorites were these peanut chikkis and Kalpana Cake.

It was a boarding run by nuns and nuns made stupid rules. Boarders were not permitted to buy stuff at the canteen while the day scholars were allowed to. Don't ask me why, those were the rules. That rule did not stop us from getting some of our days scholar friends to buy us some or sneaking in ourselves.

These chikkis are made in memory of the chikki taste from long time ago. Not with peanuts but with Amaranth seeds. Making chikki is not all that hard. I have made them with peanuts. It seemed that using Amaranth seeds seemed like a good idea. Nutty and crunchy they are very similar to sesame seeds but without all that oil.


Roast the Amaranth seeds and keep it ready.
Make a sugar syrup of one string consistency. Add the chopped nuts and the roasted Amaranth seeds.
Pour the mixture on to a greased plate and cut into desired shapes.



Amaranth Seeds Chikki
Preparation Time:15 minutes
Cooking Time:20 minutes
Ingredients
  1. 1 cup Amaranth Seeds
  2. 1 cup sugar (I used raw sugar)
  3. 1/4 cup water
  4. 1/4 cup roasted almonds chopped
  5. 1 tsp of lemon juice

Method
  1. In a slightly deep vessel roast the Amaranth seeds. The tall vessel prevents the Amaranth seeds from splattering everywhere. Roast the seeds till they turn slightly brown. At this point the seeds are completely roasted.
  2. Take sugar and just enough water to cover the sugar in a sauce pan. Heat till the sugar melts and forms a syrup. Continue heating the sugar till it reaches one string consistency.
  3. Note:I follow a simple trick when making sugar syrup so that crystals do not form on the sides. Squeeze lemon juice on the sides when the sugar syrup starts to stick to the sides.
  4. Keep a greased plant handy.
  5. Once one string consistency forms, start to move quickly. Mix the roasted Amaranth seeds and the roasted almonds into the syrup, stir to mix and pour the mixture into the greased plate.
  6. Let slightly cool and make cuts to form desired shapes. Let cool completely and break along the cuts.
  7. Will stay outside for close to a month.

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8 comments:

  1. I love chikki too and this looks very doable and nutritious. Thanks for the recipe.
    What was Kalpana cake like? I have never heard or seen it before.

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  2. The last pic with chikki wrapped in wax paper brought back so many memories Indo. These small squares made us so happy...didn't they? I still am a big fan of chikki and get it from Indian stores. Should try these since Amaranth sounds like a good subsitute for pure nuts. I too went to a convent for 12 years of my primary education and I hear ya about the rules...gosh! there were so many of them and I am sure a kid of this generation would consider it oppressive.

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    Replies
    1. I know, can't believe how we tolerated the way those nuns treated us. Granted some were nice too.

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  3. Wat a fantastic brittle,never tried anything with amaranth seeds..

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  4. Priti and Sra,
    'Kalpana cake' was Elantha vadai (remember those?) sold in packets. These were smoother drier version and were very popular back then.

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    Replies
    1. Don't know why they were called Kalpana Cake!!

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    2. I'm seeing these only now, Indo. Not in my teens or 20s, when I first began to live in TN. I have a colleague who brings little balls of these in a jar, the predominant taste is of asafoetida. It's quite nice.

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