So with the late realization of fall almost being over, Thanksgiving being a week away, and Diwali being a month later than usual this year, there are a lot of sweets in my house. Not that I’m complaining.
I have been talking about making thor (pronounced with a hard t, like in “take” rather than, say, the movie “Thor” with Brad Pitt…you see?), for a very very long time. It used to be a Diwali staple, but it’s a sweet so simple that it has been overtaken by fancier, trendier desserts that are just as delicious, but not what I was looking for this year. And because I’m nostalgic and have an aversion to change, this is all I wanted.
But old recipes tend to not be on the internet as much. And whenever I asked anyone in my family, my mom, my aunts, my grandmother, they would give me the exact recipe by saying “you know you have enough flour when it just feels right in your hands,” which was…helpful. So after deciphering what my family was saying, going through many recipes that seemed similar, and watching a video of a slightly awkward online Indian cooking show, I finally reached my lovely Diwali nostalgic feeling. That’s all I was looking for.
Like in most Indian sweets, cardamom is quite common in thor as well. But as I’ve said before, I’m not the biggest fan of cardamom, especially in my Indian desserts. I like my thor extremely simple (remember – nostalgia), but if you want to jazz it up a bit, feel free to add a pinch of cardamom, and maybe even a splash of rose water, and a few threads of saffron to the glaze.
1.5 cups white whole wheat flour
1/3 cup ghee, or clarified butter
1/2 cup milk, divided
1/2 cup ghee, for frying
1 cup sugar
3 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon milk
In a large bowl, rub in the ghee into the whole wheat flour so you can clump it together, but a dough has not yet formed. Using a tablespoon at a time, incorporate the milk into the dough, as needed, until a stiff but workable dough has been made. Cover and let it rest for about an hour.
Divide dough into golfball size rounds. Roll each out until they are about 2 inches in diameter, and about 1/8 inch thick. Prick each side of each round with a fork several times, to make sure that they do not puff up when frying.
Heat ghee over medium heat in a a vessel you’re comfortable frying in. Test to see if the ghee is hot enough by throwing in a sprinkle of flour. If it sizzles, the ghee is ready. Gently place in several rounds, making sure not to overcrowd the pan. Fry on one side for about 2 minutes, and then flip and do the same, until the thor have turned a golden brown temperature.
Drain on a paper towel, and continue until all of the thor have been fried. Place on a wire rack and allow to cool completely.
To make the glaze, place sugar and water into a pot, and heat over high heat, stirring constantly until the sugar is completely dissolved. You don’t want to caramelize the sugar, so stir continuously. When you can feel no more grains, add milk, stir and take off the heat.
Drop the thor into the glaze, turning over to make sure that they are completely coated, and return back to wire rack. Continue until all of the thor have been coated. Let the glaze set for about an hour.