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.
At the same time, in southern India in the state of Telangana, batukamma is celebrated for 9 days. Day 1 being Engili Poola Bathukamma. It is celebrated on the Pethara Amasa (Mahalaya Amavasya – Bhadrapada Amavasya). Bathukamma is a festival of flowers and is celebrated for 9 days before Dasara, 10th day. 9th day is Saddula Batukamma, it is final and grand celebration of Batukamma. The Bathukammas prepared with layers of flowers immersed in water. It falls on Durga Ashtami day and sometimes it falls on Mahanavami day. On 9th day 9 varieties of Rice items called Saddulu are made and offered to goddess batukamma. 9 varieties of rice can be lemon rice, tamarind rice, urad dal rice, roasted gram dal rice, curd rice, curry leaves rice, coconut rice, sesame rice or peanut rice. In telugu, nimmakaya pulihora, chintapandu pulihora, minapa pappu annam, putnaala annam, perugannam, karivepaku annam, kobbari annam, nuvvula annam, palli annam. Saddulu is not limited to these. Lot more varieties can be made.
Whether is it’s called Navaratri in north India or batukamma in south India, it is a celebration of great goddess Durga avatars. Both are celebrated for 9 days before Dasara and on 9th-day immersion takes place.
Of course, no celebration in any culture would be complete without food. At this auspicious occasion, celebrate with low-carb and low-sugar food without sacrificing genuine Indian taste with my recipes. For those who are on Navaratri vrat or fasting, this recipe is not fasting compliant. Fasting rules are no rice and rice flour, wheat flour, all-purpose flour, sooji (rava or semolina), chickpea flour or gram flour.
- 1 cup - well roasted and crushed curry leaves
- 1½ tbsp - Channa dal
- 1 tbsp - urad dal
- 5 red chilies
- ¼ tsp - coriander seeds
- 1 tsp - sesame seeds - optional
- 2 - 1-inch tamarind pods
- ¼ tsp cumin
- 1 cup rice. Plus more if taste need be adjusted.
- 1½ tsp healthy oil
- ¾ cup water.
- For tampering:
- 1 tsp - ghee or healthy oil
- ½ tsp - Channa dal
- 4 - curry leaves.
- Roast curry leaves on medium flame until it is completely dry and crunchy.
- Cook 1 cup of rice, ¼th tsp salt and ½ tsp oil in ¾th cup water.
- In a pan, add oil. Heat to medium.
- Add red chilies. Cook until brown.
- Add cumin, Channa, urad dal, sesame seeds and coriander seeds.
- Fry till golden brown. Stir occasionally.
- Add tamarind pods. Fry another minute. Turn of the stove. Let it cool.
- Place all fried ingredients except curry leaves in a grinder.
- Grind to a powder. Now add roasted and crushed curry leaves and salt. Grind to a powder.
- Add powder to hot rice.
- Now optionally prepare to tamper.
- Add oil to a small pot. Heat to medium.
- Add cumin, Channa dal, and curry leaves. Pour on top of rice, mix well.
- Serve hot.