Ganpati Bappa! Morya!
Mangal Murti! Morya!
One can experience altogether different energy and a surge of positive vibes during the festivities of Ganesha Chaturthi. And in India, each festival is associated with signature dishes, and Ganesh Chaturthi recipes are an indispensable part of the 10-day-long festival celebrated every year. Ganesha Chaturthi also called Vinayaka Chavithi is a Hindu festival celebrated to worship the mighty elephant-headed God Ganesh’s birthday. He is the younger son of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati and brother of Kartikeya (the god of war). The festivities last 10 days every year.
Lord Ganesha is known by 108 different names and is the Lord of success and wisdom. He is worshipped before any major enterprise and is the guide of intellectuals, bankers, scribes, and authors and is recognized as the God of beginnings. His other names by which he is widely referred to as Ganpati or Vinayaka.
So, the 10-day long extravaganza is here! Ganesh Chaturthi, one of the most widely celebrated festivals across the subcontinent, especially in Maharashtra will commence on 22nd August, 2020 with much fervour around the country. Devotees will bring home beautifully sculpted and painted Ganesha idols today. Sweet shops have lined their counters with delicious variety of modaks, barfis and ladoos. For the next 10 days, devotees will shower their beloved deity with flowers, prasad, bhog, and sing hymns in the Lord’s praise. Any Indian festival is simply incomplete without a host of delectable dishes and Vinayak Chaturthi is no different. Through the 10-day extravaganza, devotees preparebhog/prasaddaily to please their beloved God.
India will celebrate Ganesh Chaturthi, but the celebrations will be toned down — limiting all the fun and fervor indoors. But here’s how you can celebrate an intimate Ganesh Chaturthi with your friends and family during the COVID 19 pandemic.
Come the Hindu month of Bhadrapad and you can smell the whiff of savory and sweet preparations being cooked at many Maharashtrian homes, preparing for the arrival of their favourite deity Ganesha. This meal makes you a part of the celebrations of a family and a chance to relish special dishes made during the festival.
Here are some popular bhog recipes offered to Lord Ganesha during the course of Ganesh Chaturthi 2020.
1. Valachya Dalimbya
A spiced, lightly tangy and slightly sweet coconut based field beans sprouts curry which is common in Maharashtrian households.
2. Ukadlelya Bataatyachi Bhaaji
Boiled potatoes which are tempered with spices, fits the definition of simple and elegant.
3. Kaakdi Chi Koshimbir
Koshimbir is nothing but salad in Marathi. The traditional Maharashtrian thali consists of any one form fresh salad/raita as an accompaniment.
4. Rushi Chi Bhaaji
The next day after Ganesh Chaturthi is called “Rishi or Rrushi Panchmi”. This stew like bhaji is served on this day. It is called Kandmoolachi Bhaji or Rishi chi Bhaji. Kandmool means root vegetables. You would love to slurp this stew and the recipe itself is oil-free.
5. Alu Vadi
Alu Vadi is a tangy, medium spicy, sweet steamed vegetable leaf roll recipe with the aloo or colocasia leaves rolled up one after another after getting smeared with a besan paste. These aloo vadis are then cut into small spices and then steamed and shallow fried.
Kadhi is the famous Indian dish made from yogurt or butter milk and gram flour/besan with a hint of ginger and tempering.
7. Goda Varan
A simple dal made of lentils which is a must with steamed rice and dollop of homemade ghee.
Deep fried fluffed up bread which goes well with the sweet dishes and also the veggies.
Food and lots of good food!
No festival in India is complete without food, especially Ganesh Chaturthi. Known for his wisdom and benevolence, Ganesha is worshipped as the God of auspicious beginnings and remover of obstacles. But the thing about Lord Ganesha that appeals to people the most is the stories describing his love for sweets. In all pictures and paintings of Ganesha, you will find ladoos, modak, and fruits in his hands. Let this year be no different. Celebrate Ganesh Chaturthi with Ganesha’s favourite delicacies.
1. Ukadiche Modak
Steamed dumplings with a filling of grated coconut and jaggery and spices. These are simply delicious!
Sweet thickened milk, flavored with cardamom and nutmeg and dry fruits. Goes well with puri.
3. Dudhi Halwa
Dessert made from bottle gourd.
Let us pledge to never take things for granted!
If anything, this year has taught us that our world is fluid, constantly mutating and wildly unpredictable. Months of self-isolation at home taught us how we can never take anything for granted again in this transient world. Therefore, this year’s Ganesh Chaturthi demands a different kind of celebration — a celebration of our blessings, our strength, and our resilience. Enjoy a small celebration at home with only your near and dear, reminiscing the good old days when festivals were grand and full of life.
Let us be more mindful this Ganesh Chaturthi.
Don’t we all appreciate the little joys in life now which we were too busy to acknowledge earlier? When all of this is over, Certain people will take responsibility and be more mindful of the world they reside in. After coming out of this COVID pandemic, the path that lays in front of us has to be molded into a sustainable one if we were to avoid another outbreak in our lifetime. Therefore, this Ganesh Chaturthi let’s be mindful of our actions and ensure that we leave fewer footprints behind. Let us be more sensitive to our nature, our rivers, and our plants. Let’s be eco-friendly this year!
Since this year’s celebrations will be held indoors, choosing an eco-friendly Ganesha for your home will be the safest option at a turbulent like this. Made out of eco-friendly materials such as clay, terracotta and other recyclable options; these Ganesha idols can reduce the risk of pollution and at the same save you the trouble of stepping out for a visarjan. Some even turn into plants. There are plenty of options to choose from. In fact, DIY Ganesha kits can be a super fun activity as well as offer a great bonding experience to the families.