Festival

The Holi Tales

Legend says that the holy festival of Holi started with an innocent question of a curious Krishna who was teased by Radha and the other gopis for his dark skin color. Bewildered, he runs to his mother Yashoda and asks why she made him black while Radha was fair. This was pure injustice. He felt really sad about this. Yashoda, hearing this, chuckles and rubs turmeric paste on his sapphire color cheeks and sends him off saying that now his color has changed. The naughty Krishna then run and plucks some kala Jamun fruit for Radha and asks her to close her eyes so that he can feed them to her. Instead, he rubs the dark juice on her cheeks and hands and declares that she too is now dark. On seeing this, all the gopis of Vrindhavan gets overwhelmed with love. They fill their palms with fragrant oil, turmeric paste, fresh butter and start smearing each other’s faces and bodies. They fearlessly throw cheese balls, buttermilk, butter, curd, aromatic oils, and water mixed with turmeric, different fruit juices and Palash flowers extract at each other. Every devotee looked very attractive with their smiling faces and glittering white teeth. Their happy faces seemed more beautiful than the mighty Palash flowers. This incredible display of affection, love and devotion was enough to start the colorful festival of Holi.

The nostalgic memories of this colorful festival always lingers in my mind. The hustle bustle of buying colors, pichkaari (water guns), new clothes to the big list of the grocery items everything was taken care with lots of care, enthusiasm and accuracy. This festival was something everyone looked forward to. Be it for the sumptuous food, family and friends getting together, exchange of gifts or smearing each other with gulaal or color. It was always a hit and never disappointed us in any way. We had a big joint family back then and everything was done in a grand way. The preparations for the festival would start well in advance and we would be gorging on the delicious food for at least a week. Apart from the memories, the other thing which lasted for a couple more weeks were the colors peeping through parts of our face, nails, palms and feet. The enjoyment did make us stand out in our school and each time a teacher saw us, he/she would ensure we are reminded of not studying enough 🙂 But, who cares. Huh!! Its Holi!

kathal aalu ki sabji, kathal sabji, dahi vada, curd vada, dry fruits lassi, lassi, sweet lassi, kesar sweet lassi, gaajar ki kheer, gaajar, kheer, orange kheer, paneerb pakoda, mixed veg pakoda, pakoda, malpua, Jharkhand malpua, Nimki, namakpaare, ajwain ki puri, puri, maide ki puri, mixed vegetable pulao, pulao, salad, holi food, holi, Indian festival, colors, food of Jharkhand, Jharkhand Thaali Menu, Jharkhand Thaali, Holi Thaali, Jharkhandi Holi thaali, vegeterian thaali, colorful, full meal thaali, rustic food, rustic Jharkhand food, homecooked, homemade, Jharkhand Special, Speciality, Puneeta Prakash, Gulmohar Doodles,Balakrishnan K

With the passing years, leaving home and being in a different city, I do get nostalgic each time a festival come by. I try to replicate some of the things, if not all, and try to rejoice the moments again. This year I made a full Jharkhand Holi Thaali. Now, my Maa might not agree to this. This is not even half of the Holi recipes. I know, some of the major things are missing in this. I will add them next year. Maybe. Till then, enjoy this please 🙂

kathal aalu ki sabji, kathal sabji, dahi vada, curd vada, dry fruits lassi, lassi, sweet lassi, kesar sweet lassi, gaajar ki kheer, gaajar, kheer, orange kheer, paneerb pakoda, mixed veg pakoda, pakoda, malpua, Jharkhand malpua, Nimki, namakpaare, ajwain ki puri, puri, maide ki puri, mixed vegetable pulao, pulao, salad, holi food, holi, Indian festival, colors, food of Jharkhand, Jharkhand Thaali Menu, Jharkhand Thaali, Holi Thaali, Jharkhandi Holi thaali, vegeterian thaali, colorful, full meal thaali, rustic food, rustic Jharkhand food, homecooked, homemade, Jharkhand Special, Speciality, Puneeta Prakash, Gulmohar Doodles,Balakrishnan K

I hope and pray that each one of you reading this now, your life gets filled with colors of joy, love, enthusiasm, optimism, faith and gratitude. You give and receive love with open arms. The joy and happiness never leaves your life and you can pass the harmony to others through your deeds.

Love to all!

Subh Deepavali, Diwali, Diwali 2015, Happiness, Festival, Light, Shine, Lights, EnjoyBalakrishnan K

“The sun does not shine there, nor do the moon and the stars, nor do lightning shine. All the lights of the world cannot be compared even to a ray of the inner light of the Self. Merge yourself in this light of lights and enjoy the supreme Deepavali.”

Subh Deepavali, Diwali, Diwali 2015, Happiness, Festival, Light, Shine, Lights, EnjoyGulmohar Doodles

Subh Deepavali, Diwali, Diwali 2015, Happiness, Festival, Light, Shine, Lights, EnjoyGulmohar Doodles

Subh Deepavali, Diwali, Diwali 2015, Happiness, Festival, Light, Shine, Lights, EnjoyGulmohar Doodles

A New Beginning…

“I am the owner of my actions (karma), heir to my actions, born of my actions, related through my actions, and have my actions as my arbitrator. Whatever I do, for good or for evil, to that will I fall heir.” ~ Buddha

A lot has happened since my last blog post. My life has taken a new turn and I know deep inside my heart that I am going to succeed in whatever life has chosen for me. My new year started on a great note. I was able to overcome my fear/ chaos/ uneasiness about making the two most difficult food I have loved since childhood. The fear of something going wrong, bad taste, hours of hassle, loads of sweat and heartbreaking outcome has always holded me back from trying to make any of these savories for years. Yes, I am talking about the soft, plump, juicy and heartwarming momos and pitthas. They can light any dark day of my life!

Apart from starting a new year, January would bring the farmer’s festival, Makar Sankranti, when our house would get filled with the aroma of varieties of pitthas, puris and laddoos… It was a festival to die for! The hustle and bustle of maa and her various chores would bring curiosity and eagerness among all the kids at home. The excitement of eating loads of jaggery sweets and other Sankranti delicacies made us hop around throughout the week. The steaming chana daal, til and khova pitthas always brought big sparkles in our eyes! The different fresh jaggery laddoos made with lots of love and care would create a rave among everyone. My grandmom played a vital role and would always be ready with some or other delicacy prepared in the mud stove with perfection. The slight hint of the smoke, the earthen flavor, jaggery mixed with love never failed to amaze us. Dark starry nights, filled with sizzles of heartwarming food, tender care, the urge to eat to the heart’s content and the brisk scoldings of maa… I guess formed the magical aura. Gone are those days. All I am left here is with such sweet memories of childhood. Memories which assures you of happiness that can be found in small yet meaningful things which can’t be brought to you by million sparkling treasures.

I remember, when last time I had friends, flown down from Nepal, we had a big momo party. Friends, chit-chats, laughter, team work and smoking hot momos was the flavor of the day. Great company and good food can always change mood and atmosphere.

Momo and PitthaPhoto courtesy: Puneeta Prakash

Maa would say that making pittha was one of a damn skill and it takes years of practice to master the art! Just like Kung Fu I guess 😉 Honestly, before this January, I would have never dared to think of making momos and pitthas without company keeping in mind the hours of work and mastery it required! But, as I said earlier, this year is different and I know I will overcome all my fears. With this thing in my mind, I wore my cooking shoes, put on my heart print apron and set forward to win over my family member’s heart the same way it use to woo me years back! Long hours of STD and ISD phone calls, loads of kneading and grinding, chopping and cooking brought out some real beautiful, steaming and tasty results! Huh… the hard work has paid off!

One of the best ways to make yourself happy is to make other people happy; one of the best ways to make people happy is to be happy yourself ~ Gretchen Rubin

2014 was a challenging year and before ending it taught me humbleness, generosity, faith in letting go and to pursue my love and passion. I hope that 2015 is a year of dreams fulfilled, happiness achieved and fears overcomed. I hope all of us are able to meet the inevitable challenges and setbacks with heart and fortitude. I hope we learn and practice the virtues of excepting ourselves, spreading love, forgiving the worthy and pursuing our passion. Thank you everyone for reading my blog, showering me with encouragement and diligently loving me in some way or other!

Happy New Year dear readers. Stay blessed 🙂

Happy Deepavali and Yummy Food Memoirs :)

Happy Diwali everyone!! Ahem, as the world knows, I am such a busy-Indian-lady and that gives me an excuse to wish everyone a day later 😉 The endless rituals which comes along with these festivals have kept me busy like a bee. But that doesn’t scare me and I love following all these customs and rituals. Following them makes me feel connected to my roots, I feel lots happier, content and enlightened. These festivals bring so much love, joy, peace and warmth in the family that even the slogging seems worth it! Isn’t it? 🙂

This year me and my husband couldn’t go to celebrate Diwali at home and he was very sad about it. Dear husband would be missing the yummy snacks and food my mother-in-law prepares on the festivals. Neverthless, I prepared my own set of food and tried to make him happy, the good wife as I am 🙂

Happy Diwali

All, the kneading, whipping, chopping, sweating, excitement and hours of my super hard work in the kitchen, came out in the form of happiness and loads of tasty food!! Thank God, I could erase some of the saddness from hubby’s face. Yummy food can do real wonders in a man’s life. Isn’t there a saying that the path to a man’s heart goes through his stomach… I know now what that means 😉

Our Deepavali was great. How was yours? I hope you too had a safe and happy Deepavali 🙂 🙂

Happy Sarhul Everyone :)

Sarhul Photo courtesy: Niranjan Kujur | Flickr

“Sarhul” is one of the grand festival of the tribals in Jharkhand and Odisha. This festival is celebrated on Chaitra Shukla Tritiya, the third day of bright half moon in Chaitra month. “Sarhul” is celebrated during spring season when the Shaal/Sakhua trees get new leaves. This festival, is too much related with Shaal tree and the earth and the Sun. In fact this festival is related to the whole of nature!! It is a worship of the village deity who is considered to be the protector of the tribes and the festival is also marked as the beginning of the New Year. People sing and dance a lot when the sprouting happens. The deities are worshiped with shaal flowers. These flowers represents the brotherhood and friendship among villagers. Pahan the priest, distributes shaal flowers to every villager. Rice wine called “Handia” is then distributed among villagers as prasad. Traditional group dance, music and feasting with gay abandon are the highlights of the festival.

I wish that the new year brings lots of happiness, prosperity and success in everyone’s life.

HAPPY SARHUL 😀

Happy Holi Folks :)

Gulaal ka rang laal hai..
Gujiya ki mithaas bemisaal hai..
Sab geele hain pyaar ke paani mein..
Sab ghule hain Holi ki ravaani mein..
Rangon ke tyohar me sabhi rangon ki ho bharmar..
Dher saari khushiyo se bhara ho aapka sansar..
Sunhari dhoop barsaat ke baad..
Thodi si hassi har baat ke baad..
Usi tarah ho mubahrak aapko ye nayi subah..
Yahi dua hai bhagwan se humari har baar..
Rangon ki bahaar hai..
Sab mein jhalakta pyaar hai..
Sab jhoom naacho gaao aaj “Holi” ka tyohaar hai..
Makki ki roti, Nimbu ka aachar,
Suraj ki kirne, Khushiyo ki bahar,
Chand ki chandi, Apno ka pyar,
Mubarak ho aapko, HOLI ka tyohar!!

“आप सभी को होली की ढेर सारी शुभकामनाएं….”

Happy Holi Folks :)
Photo courtesy: Balakrishnan K | www.utopianhere.com

 Scroll to top