The main ingredients of this are Maida, Baking Soda, Hot refined ghee/oil, Sugar, Cardamom and a pinch of salt.
Khaja also known as Pheni is a very famous Odia sweet and it is one among the chapan(56) bhog Mahaprasad of Lord Jagannath, Puri, Odisha, India..Legends say Lord Jagannath personally appeared in the dream of a man from Puri and instructed him how to prepare it. Next day the man prepared a basket full of khajas and offered to Lord Jagannath, which the Lord happily accepted.
In a large mixing bowl or plate sieve together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add hot oil/ghee and mix well. Slowly add water to make stiff dough. Knead it for 15 minutes or until its smooth and set aside for 10 minutes (If you have enough time then you can leave the dough for 1/2-1 hr to get even better result). Make sugar syrup of one string consistency in the mean time. Roll the entire dough in to a big rectangle and then spread the ghee/oil smoothly over the rolled dough. Then roll the dough from one end working towards the outer end, it will look like a big rope. Now cut in to 1'' size pieces. Take each piece and roll it again in to long size khaja. Heat oil in a deep frying pan/kadhai (med-high flame first , turn the flame to med-low once oil is hot). Fry the khajas until it turns golden brown and take out on a paper towel. Dip the khajas in the syrup and let it sit there for 10 minutes. Coat the syrup well in these khajas and take out on a wire rack. The sugar syrup will tend to go solid after sometime, which add more crunch to the Khajas.
This stays for more than a month in tight containers and is one of the favorite sweet dishes of Lord Jagannath.
The packet contains 20 pieces along with divine Nirmalya and idol of Lord Jagannath.
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