Diwali is just round the corner. And of us Bengali Hindus, we also celebrate Kali Puja at the same time. While Diwali is celebrated as the Festival of Lights, Kali Puja is the worship of Goddess Kali and her energies. Both the festivities take place after sun down. Lights and fire crackers are an integral part of the celebrations. It marks the victory of good over evil. New clothes once again and loads and loads of Sweets are the order of the day.

Festive food is always special for me. While in India you have the option of going over to your favorite Sweet Makers, and ordering your stash of favorite Sweet Treats for the festivities. But those of us not in India, either we have to satisfy our sweet cravings with the canned sweets available or make batch of our favorites.  I personally favor making a batch, even if its a small batch. This year, I got extra adventurous,and made two batches of two different kinds of Indian sweets.

The first was a batch of Instant Jalebis or Jilipis as their called in Bengali. And the next was---well, its coming up in the next post. For those of you who are not aware of what I am talking about, Jalebis are sweet pretzels, made with a lentil batter flavored with saffron and then dunked in a sugar syrup. They are crisp and sweet and too good to resist.

Coming back to making the Jilipis, I always felt that they are very complicated to make, till many friends assured me that it was not. I know nothing equals making something from scratch, but as it was my first time, making Jalebis, I decided to stick to the easier route of using a store bought dry mix. It came with a squeezie bottle, much like the plastic squeezie bottles, many of us have lying around at home. The idea was to make the batter according to the package instructions, fill it in the bottle and then pipe away over hot oil.

 I think I have decent icing /piping skills, so I thought it would be a cake walk. But i had forgotten the bit, that you have to pipe over hot oil, and the resulting heat can sway your hands or your apparent skills at icing.

Lastly the fried jalebis are immersed or dunked in a sugar syrup favored with green cardamoms. And if you are more indulgent, you can flavor the batter with saffron and add a few strands of saffron to the sugar syrup itself. Indulgence is the order of the day when it comes to festivities.

I know many will frown upon me, for using a story bought Jalebi Mix rather than preparing the dry ingredients mix from scratch. The same way, using a store bought cake mix is often frowned upon by many. But my point is, it made my life easier, and I could squeeze in , making some sweets, with my crazy schedule. Maybe next time, I will be more adventurous and start making Jalebis from scratch. Happy Diwali and Shubho Kali Pujo to you all !!!


Ingredients : 
Instant Jalebi Mix - 1 packet
Water : 2 cups
Sugar : 1 cup
Saffron strands : A few
Green Cardamom: 4 to 5
Bay leaves : 2

 First make the sugar syrup. In a sauce pan, mix in the sugar, water, bayleaves and cardamom and bring it to a boil. Once all the sugar has dissolved, turn the heat to lower and let it simmer, till it reduces to half its quantity and the syrup has a single thread like consistency. Be very careful when you are making this syrup as its extremely hot and sugar burns are nasty.

Let it cool down to being warm, rather than boiling hot.It kept mine on the low burner as I start dot make my Jalebis.

Make the batter according to the package instructions. I added in some saffron strands to the store bought dry mix batter . Once the batter was smooth, I filled it in a squeezie bottle.

Then I took a non stick pan and added oil and let it heat up to medium heat.

Pipe the batter on to the oil, in 3 1/2 concentric circles. Fry till light brown and crisp on both sides. Do it in batches please. I know the package said 3 and 1/2 circles, but I was looking more at how they were shaping up and my Math skills were haywire.

I drained the fried jalebi over some paper towels, then dunked them in the warm sugar syrup for around a minute. Anything between 30 seconds to a  minute is enough for dunking them. You want the jalebi to be coated with the sugar syrup but not lose their crispness.

You can serve it warm or cold. You can pair warm jalebi with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Its a great combination.

So go ahead and make your own batch of your favorite sweets and make the festive times much more sweeter.

Happy Diwali once again !!!


  1. Hi Ritz
    Could you please suggest some exercise/fitness regimen for post delivery period?


  2. Oh sure Mahua. A warm up with 30 minutes of Cardio, followed by reps of lunges and sit ups (on the exercise ball), and another round of Cardio of around 10 mins to cool off. You can start off with this routine and increase the reps to your convenience. If you have had a normal delivery, then you can go ahead with this, as I had done it. But if you have had a C -Section, then please take a heads up from your doctor if you need to avoid certain workouts. Happy working out. let me know if you need to know anything else. Thanks for reaching out. Always feel great to hear from my readers.