As festive cheer grips the country, little bundles of jaggery and rice flour have taken centre stage. And whether you’re keen on gifting the beloved Indian dessert to your loved ones or fancy a bite for yourself – brands have an eclectic platter on offer, complete with quirky ingredients and flavours. Here’s our pick of the best spots to shop for modaks this Ganesh Chaturthi. By Eshita Srinivas
For 10 days every year – sometime around the months of August and September – the streets of most Indian cities brim with colourful idols of lord Ganesh in varying designs, shapes, and sizes. And as celebrations gather steam, kitchens across homes begin dishing out carefully crafted, bite-sized dumplings made of jaggery, coconut, rice flour, milk, and cardamom.
Known popularly as modaks – this delicacy is believed to be the elephant god’s favoured dessert. In line with this, culturally, an offering of 21 modaks is made during holy rituals. That said, if the hustle of life doesn’t allow for much room for cooking or you’re feeling a bit experimental this Ganesh Chaturthi, we’ve curated a range of unique modaks on offer. Handcrafted, thoughtfully made, and meticulously packaged, these steamed treats promise indulgence in every bite.
Melt-in-the-mouth modaks that are a must-try this Ganesh Chaturthi
Bombay Sweet Shop
Known to add their own signature twist to traditional Indian sweet treats, Bombay Sweet Shop is a no-brainer when it comes to festive shopping. Staying true to this reputation, the brand has curated delicious options that capture all the flavours of the festive season. This includes chocolate fudge modak with peanut brittle, puran poli modak with saffron peda, and pista khubani modak with apricot jam. There’s also a unique power duo chikki – which merges the addictive qualities of modak and motichur. Traditionalists, you could go for the ukadiche modaks with jaggery and grated coconut. Order here.
Address: Dadoji Konddeo Cross Ln, Dhaku Prabhuchi Wadi, Byculla East, Mumbai
The Blue Gourmet
Chocolates aren’t the only thing this beloved brand can make artisanal. This festive season, the folks’ over at The Blue Gourmet have pulled out all the stops to transform the traditional modak into a gourmet spread of unique modaks – perfect for offering or gifting. The menu includes flavours like paan, jaggery coconut, hazelnut, and salted caramel. You could pop by the Khar outlet for a box of six or 12 or order several through food delivery apps.
Address: Out Of The Blue, 14, Union Park Rd Number 4, Khar, Union Park, W, Mumbai
Modern Indian dessert brand Genda Phool knows a thing or two about traditional flavours. The menu boasts of delicious fusion treats that merge contemporary indulgences with classic sensibilities (case in point, the strawberry boondi laddu). For Ganesh Chaturthi, a special menu comes with the promise of premium ingredients that are merged using ingredients meticulously mapped from across the country. On offer are vanilla modaks with almond cream, kesar modaks with kesar ganache, pista modak with gulkand, coconut modak with passion fruit, and chana modak with hazelnuts. Wrapped tastefully, these colourful bites are perfect for gifting. Order here.
Known for its custom cakes, premium patisserie Sassy Teaspoon has embraced the spirit of Ganesh Chaturthi by launching a range of modaks. On offer are three flavours – chocolate barfi, kesar peda, and kaju katli. If these flavours don’t spell festive, we don’t know what does. Better yet, the packaging is fun and uplifting – ideal for gifting. Now available for pre-orders across all their outlets, drop them a call for a box (or two) before they’re all out.
Address: Ground Floor, Sagarika CHS, Juhu Tara Road, Juhu, Mumbai
The Conscious Baker
Plant-based eaters and health nuts, this one’s for you. Known for their guilt-free, scrumptious desserts – The Conscious Baker has arrived to Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations with a range of diabetic-friendly, vegan modaks. The menu features chocolate modaks – made with 70 and 55 percent organic, single-origin chocolate that are devoid of sugar and animal products. These are ideal to give to your loved ones who follow certain specific diets or are keeping away from sugar this celebratory season. Order here.
Address: Shah Industrial Estate, Unit no. 1, premises, Deonar, Mumbai
Following on this theme of vegan and sugar-free indulgences, India’s first fully plant-based and gluten free cafe has a delicious treat in store this festive season. The limited edition modak menu features coconut modak with almond butter, besan modak with dry fruits, rose besan modak with sorghum flour, mawa saffron modak with organic mawa, paan modak with naturally-grown pistachios, and vegan chocolate truffle modak with organic raw cacao. All that, sans refined sugar! This is one treat we won’t regret bingeing and neither will your loved ones. Order here.
Address: Pinnacle House, Khar Pali Road, Mumbai
Known for their artisanal, high-quality sweet treats – Khoya Mithai has launched an assortment of delicious modaks to present to your loved ones or offer to lord Ganesh. These include the rose modak with pistachio and almonds, til modak with roasted sesame, and chocolate-chip modak with chocolate chips. Each bite comes with the promise of a melt-in-the-mouth experience. Best part? The aesthetic is minimal, clean, and modern. Don’t miss out and order here.
Address: The Chanakya, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi
An artisanal brand that’s known to experiment with traditional Indian desserts, Patasa has a range of decadent modaks on offer this Ganesh Chaturthi. The menu includes nawabi modaks featuring figs and roasted nuts, choco-caramel modak with chocolate peda, and citrus caramel with almonds and orange. Heavenly is the only word to describe the experience of savouring these. Order here.
Adding a touch of experimental fun to the modak offerings this season, St. Regis has a delicious surprise in store. The Ganesh Chaturthi menu features modaks made with slow-roasted nuts, organic jaggery, 24-karat gold, Iranian pistachio, Ghana milk, Madagascar vanilla, Turkish coffee, Kashmiri cashew, and more! There’s also the traditional ukadiche modak with coconut, jaggery, khoya, and cardamom. For an added touch of glee, try the chocolate modak that comes with a hammer and is filled with delicious surprises.
Address: 462, Senapati Bapat Marg, Lower Parel, Mumbai
All images: Courtesy brands
This story first appeared on Lifestyle Asia India