Start by turning the rice into flour. Wash and soak the rice in water for about 2 hours. Drain well and spread it out on a largish cotton kitchen towel to dry further at room temperature. Leave it for about an hour or so until it is barely damp.
Powder the rice using a mixer-grinder or blender till the rice is quite fine and just mildly gritty. Too gritty creates an unpleasant texture in your mouth and too fine a powder doesn’t give you enough texture. Sieve the flour to separate larger grit sized pieces. Powder these again to desired texture.
Toast or pan roast the fresh thin coconut slivers till golden brown. Cool.
Lightly toast the rice flour in a wok over medium heat until it starts to give off an aroma. Do not brown.
Measure the powdered rice and mix it together with an equal quantity of powdered jaggery. This is a rule of the thumb measurement. 1 cup of soaked and towel dried rice typically gives about 1 1/4 cup of powdered rice. The amount of jaggery should also be adjusted according to taste as some varieties/ batches of jaggery tend to be sweeter.
Also stir in the powdered cardamom, toasted coconut pieces and dried ginger powder if using. Work with a third of the powdered mixture at a time. Put about a third of the mixture in a largish bowl.
Heat the ghee in a small wok/ pan. Pour about 1/4 cup ghee into the powdered mixture. Quickly mix with a spoon. It should be crumbly in texture but hold its shape if a little bit of it is packed in your fist. If it doesn’t add a little more ghee. Take an amount of it that will fit in your palm. Close into a fist and press down again and again, like you would to make meatballs or something similar, shaping it into a round smooth ball the size of a smallish lime.
The powdered mixture with the ghee mixed in should still quite warm but you should be able to handle it while shaping. Work quickly as it is difficult to shape once the mixture loses heat. Also when you work with a warm mixture, it needs less ghee and will not be greasy or heavy.
Repeat with remaining two thirds of the powdered mixture and the hot ghee. Let the laddoos cool down for about an hour or so. Then store in an airtight container. They should keep for about 4 to 5 days. Refrigerate them if you need to store for longer.