This is the time of the year 9 sacred days are celebrated in large scale. Though they are called different names, celebrated differently, worshipping avatars of Durga is common. Navratri, Mysuru Dasara, Batukamma, Kullu Dussehra, Durga Puja, Nadahabba etc. This high-spirit festival is celebrated in many different ways. Some fast, some feast, some jagaran (not sleeping thru the night), some dance every night, some worship with high devotion.
Bathukamma is a unique flower festival celebrated in the state of Telangana, India. It is a highly enthusiastic festival, especially for women. It represents Telangana’s culture. Bathukamma is a beautiful round flower arrangement with colorful seasonal flowers stacked in the shape of temple gopuram. The arrangement signifies the Gouri goddess Bathukamma. Flowers used to make Batukamma are Bera, Thangedu, Thamara, Gunugu, Banthi, Gummadi, Kanakambaram, Mandhara, and Ramabanam. Women arrange floral batukammas beyond their creativity. Women dress up in their best, expensive pure silk sarees, wear jewelry. In the evening, all women carry plates of flowers to a nearby lake, arrange all in a circular shape. They dance around batukammas clapping rhythmically with traditional songs praising the goddess and to take birth again.
If you have never made Patra at home, you missed a most delicious, nutritious snack. More than store-bought frozen Patra, homemade Patra is soft, fresh, flavorful, and most importantly, nutritious. You will be so proud of yourself, making a recipe with so many benefits at home. Colocasia leaves are still so fresh after cooking Patra. Yet they retain a great texture to hit the spot every time. When you make at home, you can customize according to your taste buds, with organic, non-organic ingredients. That’s a bonus. Many of us know Patra as a Gujarati dish. Did you know, it is equally common in Karnataka? Though the base recipe is same, ingredients are different in Gujarati and Karnataka versions. Some of you probably expected Karnataka version has coconut. Yes, you are right. Every South Indian loves coconut. We look for ways to add coconut to every dish. Karnataka version is a bit spicy too. Karnataka version called as Pathrode or Patra vada.
This dish is natively made for Ganesh Chaturthi festival in southern parts of India. Popularly known as paala undrallu (Milk modak). Ganesh Chaturthi is a 10-day-long festival every year. It is the most popular festival of Maharashtra. It is said Ganesh Chaturthi was started by Chhatrapati Shivaji and It is been celebrated since the days of Maratha rulers: Satavahana, Chalukya, and Rashtrakuta. Now it is mainly celebrated in southern states of Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh. Among them, Maharashtra is the state known for high scale celebrations.
Ganesh Chaturthi is also known as ‘Vinayaka Chaturthi’ or ‘Vinayaka Chavithi’ is celebrated by Hindus around the world as the birthday of Lord Ganesha. It is celebrated on 4th day of Hindu lunar calendar month of Bhadrapada maasa. Which is usually in mid-August to mid-September. Kudumulu or Undrallu are steamed sweet rice balls made of rice flour, Jaggery, typically made Andhra Pradesh state in India.
Panchamritham is a liquid sweet, which is offered to God during worship or Puja in Hinduism. This sweet mixture is made of five ingredients. Pancha is 5, amrutham is nectar. In Hindu Mythology Nectar (Amrutham) is a divine food of Gods which gives them Immortality.5 ingredients are honey, jaggery, milk, yogurt, and ghee. It is made at home and at temples as a luxurious offering to God during worship. Panchamritham is filled in a bowl and kept in front of God idol representing that we are offering it god. Rest is offered to guests. In certain regions, yagna is performed, and panchamrit is offered to God by pouring it on fire.
Kudumulu or Undrallu are steamed sweet rice balls made of rice flour, Jaggery, typically made Andhra Pradesh state in India. They offered to Lord Ganesha on the festival of Ganesh Chaturthi (Vinayaka Chavithi). They are also called bellam kudumulu, teepi kudumulu, bellam undrallu. Fresh sweet potato crop comes in fall, though they are available throughout the year. Perfect time for Ganesh Chaturthi, Navaratri, and Diwali. Ganesh Chaturthi is also a festival of food. Lord Ganesh is said to be a foodie. His favorites varieties of Prasad are modak, kheer, Puran Poli, undrallu, kudumulu, and list goes on. Foodies wait for mouth-watering food made of grated jaggery, coconuts, and dry fruits on Ganesh Chaturthi.
Ganesh Chaturthi is high spirit and enthusiastic celebration. Preparations start days before the festival. Preparations to make Ganesh idol to buying new clothes and planning for food etc. Ganesh Chaturthi is also known as ‘Vinayaka Chaturthi’ or ‘Vinayaka Chavithi’.
The day is dry and bright. The people are preparing for an auspicious day. The day Lord Ganesha gives strength to overcome the obstacles in our lives, makes us stronger. The prayers have listened, all mighty Ganesha will lead us along the path of righteousness. All of Mumbai, indeed all of India, is full to bursting with anticipation. This can only mean one thing: Ganapathi Bappa Moria. Ganesh Chaturthi is also known as ‘Vinayaka Chaturthi’ or ‘Vinayaka Chavithi’ is celebrated by Hindus around the world as the birthday of Lord Ganesha. With such a hype, you’d expect gatherings, puja, food, decorations… and you will not be disappointed! The spirit goes on for a whole 10 days. One has to experience the high energy Ganesh Chaturthi for whole 10 days from puja on day 1 till procession on the on the 10th day of Ganesh Chaturthi. It is said that the high spirited Ganesh Chaturthi procession started as early as 1894.
Even if you’re a purist who only eats whole foods, you still have those craving moments to have a satisfying snack. It is certainly hard to find a satisfying snack which is healthy, low in calories, low in sugars and carbs which always hits the spot. For those who want to be on a low-calorie diet or on a healthy diet, store-bought chewda is not an option. Don’t lose hope, you can make a modified version of chewda, which gives the same satisfaction, yet a healthy one without unhealthy oils, unknown ingredients, and chemicals. Chewda is a popular Indian snack, which is a mixture of a variety of crunchy snacks. Chewda can be compared to Chex mix, that many westerners know.
At the time of this writing in 2018, India is celebrating 72nd Independence Day. India’s Independence Day is celebrated on August 15th. On this day, India got freedom from the British rule in 1947. British ruled India between 1765 – 1947. On the observation of India’s Independence Day, it is the National Holiday in India. The Indian freedom fight against British ruling began in 1857. The English came to India to trade and rule. This attitude increased the distance between the rulers and the ruled. From the 1920s onwards, Mahatma Gandhi led the Indian independence movement. His belief in non-violence inspired many and led to successful Independence. Along, many activists such as Vallabh Bhai Patel, B. R. Ambedkar, Alluri Sitarama Raju, Tanguturi Prakasam, Lala Lajpat Rai, Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Mangal Pandey, Chandra Shekhar Azad, Muslim League, led by Muhammad Ali Jinnah and many more fought for freedom.
If you want to experience a truly authentic taste of Telangana/Andhra cuisine, you have to taste Andhra Vankaya Kobbari karam – translated as Andhra eggplant, coconut masala. It is an authentic delicacy in Telangana/Andhra Pradesh cuisine which are India’s states Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. Telangana and Andhra Pradesh are recently split states from the southern part of India. Both states share a very much same cuisine, with quite a few variations in a few regions. Telangana is the land of spicy food. Yet it is not painfully spicy, it is an awesome smooth spice which wakens your taste buds and makes you feel you this is the one you missed all your life long.