Karanji Recipe (Maharashtrian) – Spice Up The Curry

  • on 11 August 2020
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Maharashtrian Karanji. This recipe makes crispy and flaky (khuskhushit) outer cover with sweet coconut stuffing. A must-have sweet snack for festivals like Diwali and Ganesh Chaturthi.

6 karanji arranged on serving platter which has gold flower border

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❤️You’ll Love This Because

  • It requires 8 ingredients only. All of them are basic and easily available in the Indian pantry.
  • This is the authentic recipe where the stuffing is made with dry (desiccated) coconut.
  • I know karanji making process is time-consuming because the shaping part takes some time. But the time is totally worth it when your family loves it.
  • The step-by-step photos will help beginners like you.

🧾Ingredients

Here is the pic of ingredients used in making karanji. Total 8 ingredients (3 for outer covering + 5 for stuffing). 

Image of ingredients used in karanji. Includes flour, salt, oil, semolina, sugar, milk, coconut, poppy seeds

Ingredient Notes

All purpose flour (maida) – Since this is a festive snack and made very occasionally, so all purpose flour is used. You can use whole wheat flour (atta) to make it little on the healthier side.

Dry coconut – yes, desiccated coconut is used. If the fresh used then shelf-life is reduced. Hence dry is used.

Semolina and poppy seeds – These two are added at the end of the cooking process which absorbs the excess moisture. This helps to increase the shelf life.

For a variation, you can flavor up the karanji stuffing with cardamom powder. Or you can also add ground almonds or cashews. I have kept it simple and authentic. This karanji recipe is from my friend’s mom. 

🍳Step By Step Photo Instructions 

Make Stuffing: 

1) Take dry coconut and milk in a pan and turn the heat on medium.

2) Let it come to a simmer, stir every 2-3 minutes and cook.

3) Cook till all the milk dries out (no bubbles are forming on the side) It takes around 20 minutes.

4) Now add sugar. As it melts becomes runny and cook till it dries out again.

5) Now add semolina and poppy seeds.

6) Mix and cook for 2 minutes. Semolina will soak all the moisture and stuffing looks dry (but it has some moisture). Let it cool down completely.

collage of 6 images showing coconut and milk in a pan, cooking, adding sugar, cooking, mixing semolina, poppy seeds

Make Dough:

7) Take all purpose flour and salt in a bowl. Add oil. Mix with your fingertips and it looks like breadcrumbs.

8) Now start adding little water at a time and knead till you get a smooth yet stiff dough. Cover and let it rest for 15 minutes.

Collage of two images showing flour and oil in a bowl and dough ball.

Shaping And Frying Karanji:

9) After resting time, again knead the dough 2-3 times to make it smooth. Divide into 20 equal portions, make a smooth ball and flatten between your palm.

10) Take one flattened disc and roll into a 4-inch diameter circle with the help of a rolling pin and rolling board. Roll all of them and keep them in a plate (spread in a plate, do not stack). Keep it covered with a clean kitchen towel.

11) Now take one rolled disc. Place 1 tablespoon of stuffing in the center. Apply water around the edges using a finger or pastry brush (this helps to seal the edges).

12) Fold into a half-moon shape and seal the edges by pressing with your finger. Take time and seal really well otherwise it will open up while frying and it becomes a huge mess.

13) Now using the designed cutter cut the edges. If you are expert enough, then you can make a design by hand by pleating the edges (like our moms do).

14) Similarly, shape all of them, keep them in a plate on a single layer and keep covered with a kitchen towel. If you have someone to help, this process can be done quickly. One person is rolling and another person is filling and shaping. So both the tasks will be done simultaneously. 

collage of 6 images showing small dough balls, rolled disc, added stuffing, folded, cut edges, shaped karanji

15) When you are about to finish shaping, heat the oil in kadai/pan for deep frying on medium heat. Once hot slide few karanji carefully in it.

16) Flip them and move around for even browning from both sides. When it is golden brown and crispy from both sides, remove it using slotted spatula and keep on a paper towel lined plate. Repeat frying for rest. Let karanji cool down completely before storing in the container.

collage of two images showing added karanji into oil and fried karanji taking out from oil

💭Expert Tips:

  • Stuffing has to be dry otherwise it will soften the outer crispy layer after storing.
  • Sealing the edges properly is very important. So use water to help the edges seal nicely. 
  • You can use gujia mould available in the market to shape them.
  • Keep shaped karanji covered to avoid drying.
  • You can double, triple the amount. Keep in mind that cooking time will be increased for stuffing as milk takes time to evaporate. 

FAQs

How do I know that oil is ready for frying?

Drop a tiny little portion of dough ball into the hot oil
– If it comes on top immediately meaning, oil is too hot
– If it stays at the bottom for longer and comes on top after a long time meaning, oil is not hot enough.
– If it comes on top after 2-3 seconds meaning, oil is perfect for frying.

Why my outer cover is soft and not crispy, flaky?

There are few points to consider to make a crispy and flaky outer pastry.
– The dough has to be stiff (yet smooth). If your dough is soft like roti then crust becomes crispy but not flaky.
– The fat vs flour ratio has to right. So do not reduce the oil amount while kneading the dough.
– Do not fry into the really hot oil. The temp has to be medium hot.

6 whole karanjis and 1 karanji cut into center to show filling on a serving platter

Check Out Other Snacks Made During Festivals

PS Tried this karanji at home? Please leave a star rating in the card below and/or a review in the comment section. I always appreciate your feedback! Plus, Subscribe to my newsletter and follow along on Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook for all the latest updates.

📋 Recipe Card

Step by Step Photos AboveWant to make it perfect first time? Don’t forget to check out Step-by-Step photo instructions and helpful Tips & Tricks !!

Karanji

Tried this recipe? Leave a comment and/or give ★ ratings

This Maharashtrian karanji recipe makes crispy and flaky (khuskhusit) outer cover with sweet coconut stuffing. A must-have sweet snack for festivals

Course: Dessert

Cuisine: Indian

Calories: 110kcal

Prep Time 30 minutes

Cook Time 45 minutes

Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes

US measuring cups are used (1 cup = 240 ml) See details

Instructions 

  • Make Stuffing: Take dry coconut and milk in a pan and turn the heat on medium

  • Let it come to a simmer, stir every 2-3 minutes and cook. Cook till all the milk dries out (there is no bubbles forming on the side) It takes around 20 minutes.

  • Now add sugar. As it melts becomes runny and cook till it dries out again.

  • Now add semolina and poppy seeds. Mix and cook for 2 minutes. Let it cool down completely.

  • Make Dough: Take all purpose flour and salt in a bowl. Add oil. Mix with your fingertips and it looks like breadcrumbs.

  • Now start adding little water at a time and knead till you get a smooth yet stiff dough. Cover and let it rest for 15 minutes.

  • Shaping Karanji: After resting time, again knead the dough 2-3 times to make it smooth. Divide into 20 equal portions, make a smooth ball and flatten between your palm.

  • Take one flattened disc and roll into a 4-inch diameter circle with the help of a rolling pin and rolling board. Roll all of them and keep them in a plate (spread in a plate, do not stack). Keep it covered with a clean kitchen towel.

  • Now take one rolled disc. Place 1 tablespoon of stuffing in the center. Apply water around the edges using the finger or pastry brush (this helps to seal the edges).

  • Fold into a half-moon shape and seal the edges by pressing with your finger. Take time and seal really well otherwise it will open up while frying and it becomes a huge mess.

  • Now using the designed cutter cut the edges. If you are expert enough, then you can make the design by hand by pleating the edges (like our moms do).

  • Similarly, shape all of them, keep them in a plate on a single layer and keep covered with a kitchen towel.

  • Frying Karanji: When you are about to finish shaping, heat the oil in kadai/pan for deep frying on medium heat. Once hot, slide few karanji carefully in it.

  • Flip them and move around for even browning from both sides. When it is golden brown and crispy from both sides, remove it using slotted spatula and keep on paper towel lined plate. Repeat frying for rest. Let fried karanji cool down completely before storing it in the container.

Notes

  • Stuffing has to be dry otherwise it will soften the outer crispy layer after storing.
  • Sealing the edges properly is very important. So use water to help the edges seal nicely.
  • You can use gujia mould available in the market to shape them.
  • Keep shaped karanji covered to avoid drying.
  • You can double, triple the karanji amount. Keep in mind that cooking time will be increased for stuffing as milk takes time to evaporate.

Q: How do I know that oil is ready for frying? A: Drop a tiny little portion of dough ball into the hot oil

  • If it comes on top immediately meaning, oil is too hot
  • If it stays at the bottom for longer and comes on top after a long time meaning, oil is not hot enough.
  • If it comes on top after 2-3 seconds meaning, oil is perfect for frying.

Q: Why my outer cover is soft and not crispy, flaky? A: There are few points to consider to make the crispy and flaky outer pastry.

  • The dough has to be stiff (yet smooth). If your dough is soft like roti then crust becomes crispy but not flaky.
  • The fat vs flour ratio has to right. So do not reduce the oil amount while kneading the dough.
  • Do not fry into the really hot oil. The temp has to be medium hot.

Nutrition

Serving: 1Karanji | Calories: 110kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 22mg | Potassium: 55mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 20IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 23mg | Iron: 1mg

*Nutrition information is a rough estimate for 1 serving




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