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The Many Ways of Eating Shakkar: Summarized for Simpletons & Pretentiously Fancy Pricks

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No dripping butter, no droplets of ghee running from the corner, no overdone crusts, and devoid of overtly enthusiastic crustiness in the roti – I just summed-up the perfect shakkar wala roti style for you. If you didn’t get it, chances are that you have suffered a brain stroke when you were asleep and hence, you cannot comprehend the simplest things in life. To ensure simpletons like you can understand this easily, am breaking down everything you need to know about this art. Yes, this is an acquired trade, an elite taste, a flavor borrowed from the rural confines of India, given a semi-urbane twist by people like me, now resonating with gastronomic greatness. Here it is:

Never overcook this jaggery jewel: Shakkar is supposed to be eaten raw and the maximum you can do is give it some restrained heat, ensuring the flame does not rip apart its sacred flavor. You don't want it wet cement-like lumps. You don't want a sandy deposit that falls apart too easily. The perfect form in somewhere in between, just about fluidic but now flowing, just crunchy enough to keep your mouth busy but not coarse in any way. You want some granularity but not too much. You want a malleable form but not flowy

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Not the contemporary sweet thing: Flavor is earthy and sweet without a salty aftertaste that we find in many baked and packaged confectionaries today. Nothing chocolaty, cute or calorie-conscious about it. This is real food and if have someone click you while you are taking a selfie, you won’t understand this

Don't cheat on the ghee: this is for all fitness-minded and still lopsided body-owners, you cannot discover the real taste of Shakkar without using some clarified butter. Don't use the salty butter variety that can kill the taste. If not ample, use some heated, molten drops of ghee. The more, the better and still you would have consumed less calories as compared to branded burger. So stop the guilt pangs and man-up for experiencing something truly exotic

All Shakkar was not created equal: this is for men who speak on the Bluetooth to inform their families that they out to fetch a packet of milk and women who are so uptight that they use a sanitizer before opening the first page of the morning newspaper. There are two varieties at play. Both good and easily available. The very fine, orange-hued Shakkar is the more processed form. It is solely sweet without any other flavor seeking your attention. The other variety looks more like the beaten form of solid jaggery bricks, and have a bit of salty, very floating, aftertaste – this variety has some lumps too and is not great for mixing with curd

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A great side option: people who call Shakkar a sweet dish because it has a predominantly honeyed taste probably cannot figure out what comes first – my eagerness to creatively whip their rear-ends or the noises in my head that preach peace. Shakkar is a great side-dish option. You can eat it raw, in the ghee form, with a bit of roti and in many other ways before, during and after the main meal. The absolutely raw taste might be too much for some, so stick to the slightly ghee-greased variety
Detox even as you eat: struggling with self-proclaimed and highly unsuccessful detoxification attempts? Chances are that you are too neurotic to try things that are easily available, believing that what is hard to get is perhaps premium and better. Well, you are wrong and someone ought to slap you. Detoxifying is never easy, immediate or 100%. It is a state of your body and you need to work it, one day at a time. Shakkar does this rather easily, boosting circulation and helping in removing the impurities. Just consider this – Ayurveda is serious when it says the best cure for Jaundice recovery and liver fatty tissue is sugarcane juice with fresh lemon extract!


  1. One more variation, actually a sub-variation, includes submerging the shakkar in a pool of desi ghee and allowing it to solidify. the result is a block that is hard to bite into but has that very deep, rich taste - not for the calorie conscious types.

  2. There is one more way of preparing it but it involves a lot of ghee or clarified butter. This is about heating the ghee in the tadka pan and allowing it to form fluid like consistency. Then, slowly add bits of shakkar until you see them turn dark orange. dont wait for too long as this will cement-ify rather soon and might become tough for your teeth. not meant for folks counting their daily calories but the aftertaste and the ghee-rich texture is too good to avoid.


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