This step-by-step recipe for shakkarpara will give you crispy, flaky and sugar coated, yummy shakkarparas making your celebrations complete. Also popularly known as shankarpali, this is such a simple, yet delicious snack recipe made with all-purpose flour, sugar, cardamom powder that can be enjoyed anytime!!!
What is Shakkarpara?
Also known as Shankarpali, lakdi mithai or gajja, is an Indian sweet snack. It is etymologically derived from Persian Shekarpareh. Shakkarpara is a popular snack in eastern, western, and north India and traditionally enjoyed as a treat on Diwali. It can be sweet, savory depending upon how it is made.
Shakkarpara is probably my most favorite Indian dry sweet snack. I have so many memories of me and my dad eating shakkarpara straight out of a jar without stopping. This can be an utterly addictive snack. Its light, mildly sweet and flaky texture make it an easy to carry snack as well.
In this recipe for Shakkarpara, I have given step by step method to make shakkarpara at home.
What other food is made during Diwali?
Diwali is the biggest and the most important festival celebrated all over India and it is really a time to binge on your favorite foods. Apart from the usual Diwali recipes, a variety of specialty foods such as kheer, gulabjamuns, laddus are served. Almost every household in India whips up an assortment of traditional Diwali feast.
Check it out here to learn more about Diwali.
Main Ingredients used in making Shakkarpara
- all-purpose flour or maida
- cardamom powder
Steps for making Shakkarpara
Step 1 – Making the Shakkarpara dough
- In a pan, take 2 cups or 250g all purpose flour or Maida and a pinch of salt. Add 2 tablespoons of semi solid ghee. Make sure the ghee is in room temperature and not in a liquid consistency. Note – You can replace maida with whole wheat flour or atta and you can replace ghee with oil.
- Use your clean and dry fingers to mix the ghee with the flour. This will make the flour holding a very loose shape. You can almost form a very loose ball.
- Now gradually add room temperature 1/2 cup milk into the flour and ghee mixture and start kneading to make a pliable dough. You can increase or decrease the amount of milk. Note – You can replace milk with water.
- Knead into a not-so-soft dough. The dough shouldn’t be very hard nor very soft
- Cover the dough and let it rest for 5 minutes.
- Now, make 2 balls outs of the roll and roll each ball into a 8 or 9 inch diameter.
- Take a sharp knife and cut into vertical and horizontal strips. Separate the strips and keep them on different trays or plates so that they don’t stick to each other. You may want to cover them too to avoid the drying out.
Step 2 – Frying the Shakkarpara
- Heat vegetable oil in a deep kadhai or pan. To test if the oil is ready, put a pea shaped dough ball into the oil. The dough ball should begin to rise up within 5 to 10 seconds. Thats when you know the oil is ready. Basically the oil should be medium hot. Neither very hot nor cold.
- You can always maintain the right temperature of the oil by increasing or decreasing the flame.
- Now begin to drop the shakkarpara strips into the oil carefully. Fry them on medium low heat for 2 to 3 minutes. Once they turn golden brown on both sides take them out and place them on a napkin lines plate. The paper napkin will absorb the excess oil.
- Once the first batch of shakkarpara are fried, modify the temperature by increasing or decreasing the flame to bring the oil back to medium-low heat again.
- Now fry the second batch of shakkarpara.
- Repeat this process
Step 3 – Coating the Shakkarpara in sugar cardamom syrup
- In low heat, cook 1 cup granulated sugar (150g) ,1 tea spoons cardamom powder and 1/2 cup water
- Cook till the sugar cardamom syrup starts to bubble and gets sticky
- Simmer the syrup till you get 2 to 3 thread consistency. To check the consistency, take a bit of syrup in a spoon. Let it become warm and then take the syrup between your forefinger and thumb. Press and separate the fingers. You should see 2 to 3 threads forming.
- Switch off the flame and quickly add all the fried shakkarpara into the syrup and give it a good mix so that each shakkarpara gets coated with sugar. NOTE – If the sugar syrup isn’t of 2 to 3 thread consistency, the shakkarpara will become soggy and won’t be flaky.
- Once the sugar syrup is coated and cools down, it will be crystalized.
How to store Shakkarpara
Once the shakkarpara is completely cool, you can store them in an air tight container for up to a month. Shakkarpara has a good shelf life.
Important Tips in making Shakkarpara
Use a sharp knife and preferably a glass cutting board to make the cutting easy
The oil must be in the right temperature before frying the shakkarpara. Medium-low heat is ideal to get that crisp golden color.
Make sure to lower the heat when taking out the fried Shakkarpara and then increase the heat to medium-high to bring up the oil temperature before adding the next batch.
Drain the fried Shakarpara on a paper towel to remove excess oil, if any.
Allow the Shakkarpara to cool down completely before storing them. This ensures they remain crisp for a long time.
Instead of atta you can also take all-purpose flour (maida). Instead of ghee you can use oil.
The sugar syrup has to reach 2 to 3 thread consistency, otherwise the shakkarpara will become soggy as they will absorb the sugar syrup
Few other Indian festive recipes –
- 2 cups (250g) Maida/all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup Room temperature water/milk
- pinch of salt
Sugar Cardamom Syrup
- 1 cup Sugar
- 1/2 cup Water
- 1 tsp Cardamom powder
- Oil or ghee for deep frying
To Make the Dough
- Take 2 cups (250 grams) maida in a mixing bowl or pan. Add 2 tbsp ghee. The ghee should be at room temperature and in a semi solid state.
- With your fingertips, mix the ghee with the flour very well.
- When you press the flour+ghee mixture in your palm, the mixture should be able to hold itself together without falling apart.
- Now add milk in parts. Depending on the quality of flour, you can add less or more.
- Knead to a firm semi soft dough. Neither too soft nor too hard. Divide the dough into two parts. Cover and rest for 5 minutes.
- Take one part and roll into a thick 8 to 9 inches in diameter. With a knife make vertical or horizontal stripes.
- Heat oil for deep frying in a pan. Make sure the oil is medium-low hot. Test the oil temperature by adding a pea shaped ball of dough into the oil. This small piece of the dough should come up gradually and quickly on the surface.
- Drop the shakkarpara into the medium hot oil and fry till they are crisp and light golden onboth sides. Keep a check on the oil. You can increase or decrease the flame to maintain that medium-low heat on the oil.
- On the last batch of frying the shakkarpara, you can start preparing the sugar syrup. Let all the shakkarpara come to room temperature, before you add them in the sugar syrup