Living in Consciousness ~ Indi(r)a’s Food and Garden Weblog

Chocolate Covered Sweet Sesame Spheres (Nuvvula Mudda)

Sweet sesame spheres or Nuvvula mudda as we call them in Telugu, are powerhouse of sweets, full of body building nutrients. Prepared with love and lot of manual work, they are especially made for pregnant women, children and people who are convalescing. We also prepare them traditionally for a festival called Naagula Chavithi. These kinds of sweets are very difficult to prepare without a stone mortar. That’s why from my recent trip to India, I brought a medium sized stone mortar and pestle from my hometown, Nandyala. I wanted it more than anything and I felt that it is more valuable and needed than the usual stuff that I bring from India, like dresses, sarees etc., Of 120 pounds of luggage that we are allowed to bring to this country, 30 pounds went to this thing. Changed priorities.:-)

Nuvvula Mudda:

5 cups -sesame seeds, powdered
2 cups - jaggery, powdered
1 cup -dry coconut, powdered
1/2 cup- lightly roasted cashews, finely chopped

Sesame seeds made into powder, cashews, dry coconut powder, jaggery

Traditionally, in our home in India, above ingredients are powdered manually, using a stone mortar and pestle. What I did here was, I used a food processor to coarsely powder the sesame seeds and dry coconut. And used a hammer for jaggery.

Then, I pounded these i.e. coarsely powdered sesame seeds, dry coconut and jaggery together for about 30 minutes using the stone mortar and pestle. This pounding process brings out the oils and real tastes of sesame seeds, coconut and jaggery, which is not possible if this was done in a food processor. Also a good strength workout for upper body.

Pounding the ingredients together in stone mortar at my house

I removed this finely pounded mix from the mortar onto a plate and sprinkled the cashews, mixed them all together. Shaped this mixture tightly with hands into medium sized spheres.

Making of Sweet Sesame spheres (Nuvvula Mudda)

Viola.. first time making the nuvvala muddalu on my own is a sweet success. I am so happy for finally making these at my home, here in US.

Sweet Sesame Spheres (Nuvvula Mudda)

The thing that prompted me do all this is this month’s SHF. For one year anniversary celebration of SHF event, the lovely Kelli of Lovescool chose dark chocolate. She also challenged us to come up with something new and interesting with dark chocolate. So I envisioned the idea of dark chocolate covered sweet sesame spheres. Traditional Indian sweet meets this South American & Western treasure, resulting in wonderful, very delicious and healthy dessert. I think these are very original and are not already created by chocolatiers. Please correct me if my assumption is wrong.

Dark chocolate coating is very easy. I used Lindt’s brand dark chocolate bar. Melted the bar and some ghee in microwave oven and dipped the sweet sesame spheres in melted chocolate. Then refrigerated them for about one hour.

Dark Chocolate Covered Sweet Sesame Spheres (Nuvvula Muddalu)
Something new - Dark chocolate covered sweet sesame spheres (Nuvvula Mudda).

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Sesame Seeds, Amma & Authentic Andhra, Jaggery, Naivedyam(Festival Sweets), Cashews, Chocolate, Indian Sweets 101 (Friday October 21, 2005 at 6:44 pm- permalink)

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77 comments for Chocolate Covered Sweet Sesame Spheres (Nuvvula Mudda) »

  1. That is so original and sounds delicious too. Wow, that mortar-pestle is big and pounding with that for 30 min, I can imagine the workout!

    Comment by mika — October 21, 2005 @ 6:57 pm

  2. Mika.. thanks. They tasted extra good after that workout.

    Comment by Indira — October 21, 2005 @ 7:05 pm

  3. perfect! can I ask how many of these lovely sesame spheres came out with the quantities you mentioned?

    Comment by fethiye — October 21, 2005 @ 7:53 pm

  4. They look just beautiful! Very creative. I am speechless at that stone mortar and pestle…

    Comment by Nupur — October 21, 2005 @ 8:11 pm

  5. Hi Fethiye..I forgot to count, but I remember making about 15 medium sized balls.

    Nupur… Thanks! I was sick and tired of doing shortcuts to prepare our recipes. Also I am crazy, even my mother at home thinks I am crazy to bring this stone mortar here.:)

    Comment by Indira — October 21, 2005 @ 8:42 pm

  6. Indira…they look fabulous! And you’ve provided me with yet another recipe for Matt…we both love your blog, you know.

    Comment by Stephanie — October 22, 2005 @ 2:28 am

  7. Me three…I am stunned with your mortar and pestle and delighted to read your blogs. I go around yours, Nupur and Green Jack fruit, every so often..thanks gals. I have not cooked from them yet ( what to do, I am in weight-loss mode as well as the eternal list of things to do)…

    Just want to say how much I enjoy your blogs!

    Comment by thodarumm — October 22, 2005 @ 8:29 am

  8. Stephanie and Matt..I greatly appreciate your patronage.Thank you!

    Thodarumm..I am glad that you enjoy visiting our food blogs.
    I am very cautious about what I cook & post in my blog and most of my recipes are not only traditional but healthy too. Try them out, you won’t gain weight, I promise.:)-

    Comment by Indira — October 22, 2005 @ 10:11 am

  9. Wow! those are real perfect. Your snaps are amazing ones. Kudos! Your blog gives me the needed inspiration to write something at my blog - my dhaba :-) Cheers!

    Comment by VK Narayanan — October 22, 2005 @ 10:22 am

  10. WOW WOW WOW!!!

    That is awesome

    I don’t think you are crazy, if you brought the mortar and pestle back with those intentions then it is so easy to see that you did, everytime you use it or look at it will make you happy! worth the 30 pounds :)

    Comment by clare eats — October 22, 2005 @ 9:48 pm

  11. You were not crazy at all, Indira–that mortar and pestle is part of home, and in your kitchen it will always remind you the sights, scents and flavors of home.

    I understand it perfectly–and–I love the sweet you posted! That looks perfect!

    Comment by Barbara — October 22, 2005 @ 10:48 pm

  12. Wow, what a fab pic. Never thought sesame seeds and chocolate would be a good combo… gotta try it!

    Comment by shammi — October 23, 2005 @ 3:31 pm

  13. These look so good I might have to go out and buy a mortar-pestle!

    Comment by Kelli — October 24, 2005 @ 1:11 am

  14. I think I’m gonna love this since I adore nuts and chocolates. But wow, mashing it for 30 minutes? That must be a lot of hard work!

    Comment by celiaK — October 24, 2005 @ 11:34 am

  15. Those look really delicious! I love how they are served to people who need strength. I always think chocolate gives me strength, but maybe it’s just psychological strength! :)

    Comment by Beth - The Zen Foodist — October 24, 2005 @ 1:45 pm

  16. The combination of sesame seeds and chocolate is very appealing and new. Your ideas are very genuine and you must patent your recipes to protect your intellectual property.
    Good luck and best wishes!

    Comment by VJ — October 24, 2005 @ 2:20 pm

  17. Hey Indira,
    This recipe is innovative. Wow! Your “rubburolu & potram” are a treasure! How heavy is it ?
    And how did you bring it, as a special baggage?
    Just curious!:)


    Comment by Sakhiya — October 24, 2005 @ 2:27 pm

  18. I went through rest of the entries to the SHF event. And yours has got to be the most innovative and original! And carrying that mortar and pestle all the way back from India…you’ve got to be crazy about food. ;D

    Comment by ammani — October 25, 2005 @ 3:01 pm

  19. It looks delicious ! Bravo ! I love making my own sweets and must try it. Thank you. Cheers !

    Comment by Virginie — February 20, 2006 @ 7:59 am

  20. I liked you site a lot. i have seen this first site which shows pictures with each recipe detailing how to make it. I loved it a lot. Hurray! fro continuing the great work.

    Comment by Kirti — March 4, 2006 @ 2:47 am

  21. Hi Indira,
    Would using a food processor (in my case its a sumeet dry grinder) not work at all for the recipe? I am not sure I want an upper body workout.:) Plus, I don’t own a mortar& pestle set. I use my dry grinder to make plenty of other nut and seed based laddus and it works great.
    Let me know.

    Comment by Shrilatha — April 26, 2006 @ 12:59 pm

  22. Thought I’d share this with everyone in case anyone is mortar & pestle -less like me.
    Went ahead and made these laddus with my sumeet dry grinder. Made a few changes to the preparation method though, - dry roasted the sesame seeds (till they turn a very light brown, no oil) and cashewnuts. Added one teaspoon of elaichi seeds and ground them all up in my sumeet.
    The result was fabulous. Melt in your mouth laddus in a jiffy. The taste factor in the mortar & pestle method must, as Indira mentions, have an edge over the automated method. But if you are pressed for time,this is a great way to go.

    Comment by Shrilatha — May 1, 2006 @ 9:39 am

  23. Thanks for the alternative, Shrilatha. This one is a keeper!

    Comment by beth — July 1, 2006 @ 4:47 pm

  24. hi indra,to say the least,am becoming a crazy fan of urwebsite;keep it up!!
    shrilatha,did u just powder the jaggery and add to the ground sesame seeds?

    Comment by gayathre — July 19, 2006 @ 11:28 am

  25. Hi Gayathri,
    I am sorry for this much delayed response. I am guessing you already found your answer through experimentation. In case you haven’t,here’s what I did. I prepped the jaggery a bit before dumping it into the grinder with everything else. I usually buy the solid mounds of jaggery. So, I broke the mound up into chunks which measured an inch and a half,roughly.

    Unaware of an easier method to break the jaggery up, I used a rolling pin & knife to pound and mutilate it.
    But, I read on a blog somewhere that nuking the jaggery for a few seconds, softens it considerably, making it easier to disintegrate.
    I put this tidbit of information to the test and it worked like a charm.

    Anyway,the grinder does an excellent job of pulverizing the chunks of jaggery.
    I used the wet grinding blade, but I guess the dry grinding blade would be more appropriate.
    Either way, if you have a good & robust grinder, the blade shouldn’t really matter. The resultant meal will turn out very fine.

    A word of caution. I scaled the recipe down to about 2 cups of sesame seeds and I still had to split the grinding process into 2 batches. So don’t dump the entire recipe in at once into the grinder,you will overload it and may conk out on you.

    Comment by Shrilatha — December 19, 2006 @ 9:08 am

  26. Hi,

    Love your site. Between your two mortars, which one do you recommend? I can’t go to India to buy one, but I was considering a granite one from Crate and Barrel. It’s about $27. The ceramic one is considerably cheaper. But, does it work as well? I cook Indian food mostly. Would really appreciate your input. Thanks.

    Indira replies:
    Hi RG, if money is not a problem then I would definitely go with granite one. Ikea also carries a granite one, I think it is priced around 17 some dollars. Small but good size to prepare spice powders or masala paste for one week like that. During our move to Seattle last September, we lost the ceramic one. It’s already quite old and it got broke during shipping. So I bought a new granite one from Ikea. Works great and looks cute.

    Comment by RG — February 14, 2007 @ 7:08 am

  27. Hi Indira,

    Thank you so much for the prompt response. Could you also try to post a pic of your granite piece? Thanks again!

    Comment by RG — February 18, 2007 @ 1:44 pm

  28. Indira,I wanted to try this recipe but I am not too fond of coconut. Can I leave the coconut out?

    Indira replies:
    Hi Sandhya, we prepare sesame laddus without coconut also. They taste quite good.
    Let me know how you like them, if you try. Thanks.

    Comment by Sandhya — March 29, 2007 @ 6:27 pm

  29. Hi Indira,

    I love ur website.These laddus look delicious. i surely try them this weekend. Thanks

    Comment by veena — December 27, 2007 @ 12:14 am

  30. I am a big fan of ur website. I love sesame seeds muddulu. In Tamil Nadu we call it “Ellu urundai” and it uses black sesame and jaggery with roasted peanuts. We roast the sesame seeds before powdering it. In your muddulu I noticed it’s white sesame seeds. Do you roast the seeds before you powder it?

    Comment by Bhuvana — March 4, 2008 @ 8:31 am

  31. Hi Indira,

    I am a real big fan of yours. I get a lot of inspiration from your website. I tried the nuvvula mudda for my son yesterday - and what a delight it turned out be. Thank you dear!!


    Comment by Madhu Srinivasulu — August 20, 2008 @ 12:54 am

  32. Hi Indira,

    Could you share with me what processes you followed to prep the stone mortar? I am rather unsure. I did grind some raw rice and threw it away… but I thought asking another user will bring good insights,

    Comment by meera — July 28, 2016 @ 2:51 am

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