It is Diwali. We all celebrate Diwali. We have a Diwali vacation of 10 days during this time. A favorite time of the year for all kids. There are sweets, and there are sweets and there are sweets. One can not make up their minds which ones to eat first. The one with the silver foil or the chocolate colored one or the orange spirals. They are all, if you guessed ‘Out of this world’ you got it!
There were sweets everywhere, in the shops, in all the homes, and family and friends were bringing home even more. I always settled for the chocolate barfi, I was partial to anything chocolate.
Waking up in the morning, we would take a quick bath and wear our beautiful new shiny clothes and gold jewelry.
Dad would take us to the Jain temple. Diwali day is the day Mahavir Tirthankar attained liberation from the cycle of births and deaths.
We were more interested in the Jalebi[ orange spiral sweet] and Ganthia [lentil chips] he would buy after the temple visit as well as feeding the pigeons.
Most of the day was spent with dad taking us to our relatives homes to wish them” Happy Diwali”. When we cam home, we would help mom get snack and refreshments ready to receive guests to our home.
In the evening, we honored and worshipped the account books for our family business. This was followed by eating nuts and sweets. Dinner came last.
After dinner, the best part is bursting fire crackers. We lit them with incense sticks. There were fountains, sparklers, rockets to name a few. My mom would say, as Jains we do not burst crackers because it kills living organisms on the floor and in the air, not to mention all the pollution. We would say ‘Mom, we are kids. That is what kids do. ‘ And then we would run down, burst a few and come back before the other kids were done.
My daughter is 4yo. We are going to celebrate Diwali at her preschool. I found a book for us to read ” ‘Rani saves Diwali’. I found some coloring pages and a special paper to do sand art Rangoli.
DD [dear daughter] loves chocolate. I asked my mom how to make the chocolate barfi that I loved so much. She explained it was a long process involving making milk solids from milk on the stove with many hours of laborious stirring of milk. I thought maybe not in this lifetime.And then, I found an easy recipe for chocolate barfi.
It is actually a modified recipe. here is the original. My modifications:
- Used Nanak Khoya from the Indian store
- Crumbled it in a microwaveable bowl after setting it at room temperature for 1/2 hour.
- Microwave it for 1 min,
- Stirred in 1/2 cup of powdered jaggery and microwaved it for an additional minute.
- Added 2 tsp of Carob powder and 1/2 tsp of fresh ground cardamom powder and folded it in.
- Lastly I added 1/3 cup of semi sweet dark chocolate chips. Gave a good stir till it all mixed in. Interestingly, the chocolate chips melted and I did not have to put it in the microwave again.
- Lay it in a greased 9 inch dish. Cut it to the preferred shape.
Lo and behold! I had made the elusive chocolate barfi in less than 5 min! I am so encouraged by this. Since it is for the preschool, it ha son nuts. For home, I will add, nuts as well. I can even mold the barfi in little lamps for Diwali!.
Two books, I love to read with my little one:
Rani saves Diwali, you can get it here.
5 days of Diwali, you can get it here.