Who doesn't love snacking on candies or brittle, right? But a lot of people shy away when it comes to candy-making. - and for good reasons, mind you! Candy making has had this perfectionist art aura to it. Not only that you need a special equipment such as a candy thermometer but also the preparation is very unforgiving to mistakes, a few degrees temperature difference here or there can make a difference between a perfect bite of candy to an unchewable mass. Fret no more however - this by far is the easiest candy/brittle that you can make and what's more, it does not require a candy thermometer either.
Come January and most people in India are celebrating Sankranti - a festival which marks Sun's entrance in Capricorn zodiac by making various sweets with sesame seeds and sugar/molasses. Sesame seeds symbolize the bonds of togetherness while molasses or jaggery symbolizes the sweet bonds of all of our relationships. Offering your friends and family sesame sweets is very traditional this month - it symbolizes our intents for a warm, caring and fostering relationship for the year ahead. The symbolization aside, all it meant to me for most of my childhood is unlimited chance to munch on my favorite sweets!
Without further ado, here is how I made sesame brittle or Tilgul:
Source: from my mother (adopted from my earlier post)
1/2C sesame seeds
3/4C white granulated sugar
2 cardamom pods - crushed
1tsp ghee (or butter)
- On low hear roast the sesame seeds for 10-15mins until aromatic and until they start to look pinkish brown. Keep stirring continuously making sure the seeds do not burn. Keep aside.
- Apply ghee/butter to a large stainless steel plate on which you will spread the hot mixture. Also grease a rolling pin and a non-serrated chef's knife.
- Heat a thick pan on low heat. Add sugar and cardamom pods. Keep stirring continuously until the entire sugar melts. If after 5mins sugar has not started melting, increase the heat gradually. Keep stirring so it does not burn.
- As soon as the sugar is entirely melted add the roasted sesame seeds and mix well.
- Remove from heat. As quickly as possible spread the sesame-sugar mixture onto the greased stainless steel plate. Using a rolling pin spread the mixture evenly as thin as possible.
- Using the greased knife cut small squares. This has to be done before the mixture cools entirely. Note: this step is time-sensitive, spreading and cutting has to be done fast while the mixture is still hot and before it hardens completely.
- Let the mixture cool completely.
- Using the knife remove the pieces and enjoy!