When I was growing up in Mumbai, sometimes - especially around the months of Shravan/Bhadrapad - we used to get many coconuts. They used to be a part of haldi-kumkum/kunku or vaiNa pooja ceremonies. VaiNa pooja is a GSB Konkani ceremony. The invitees are given coconuts and chuDa - a small bouquet of orange ratnagundi/shankasur flowers.
Mom generally used to keep these coconuts aside. They had some religious significance, so she always made some sweets from it and used to be very particular that they wouldn't get mixed up with the coconuts kept for making non-veg curries. Coconut plays an important role in our coastal Maharashtrian/Konkani/Malvani GSB cuisine.
Mostly, mom would make naraLi paak -or coconut barfi. She would make this in a hurry just before going to work. What started as a quick fix by pushing the coconut mixture in the fridge since mom didn't have time to wait till the firm texture is achieved, later became the necessary step in this recipe.
Naralipak or Naralibhaat is generally made on the Rakhi Day - Rakshabandhan.
ना र ळी पा क
1 cup freshly scraped coconut
1 cup milk
3/4 cup sugar
1 cup ricotta cheese
Crush to powder
3-4 cardamoms, peeled
few strands of saffron
1. Mix coconut and milk in a heavy bottomed saucepan.
2. Cook on low flame till all the liquid is evaporated. Do not let it burn.
3. Add sugar and ricotta cheese. There will be more moisture now. Saute till all the moisture is evaporated again.
4. Add crushed cardamom and saffron.
5. Grease a steel plate or thali with ghee.
6. Spread coconut mixture uniformly.
7. Keep the thali in refrigerator for at least 1 hour so the mixture gets firm.
8. Cut into squares or diamonds.
1. Mom does not use ricotta cheese.
2.Gujaratis also make a similar recipe which goes by the name "kopra paak".