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. 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.
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.
- 1 cup rice. Plus more if taste need be adjusted.
- ¼ cup - peanuts
- 2 - red chilies
- ½ tsp - coriander seeds
- ⅛ the tsp - methi (fenugreek) seeds
- 2 tbsp - healthy oil as coconut or olive oil
- Cook 1 cup rice in ¾ cup of water in a little salt and ¼th tsp oil. Let it cool.
- Roast peanuts, coriander seeds and fenugreek seeds in a pan. Remove.
- Add oil to the same pan. Add red chilies. Fry till golden brown.
- Add peanuts, other seeds, chilies and salt to the grinder. Grind to a powder.
- Mix the ground powder with rice and mix well. Taste and add more rice if needed.
- Serve hot.