April 13 marked the first day of Chithirai – the first month in the Tamil calendar year which is celebrated as Puthandu or Puthuvarusham. The day is observed with great enthusiasm and joy. One of the many celebratory customs include preparation of palatable, traditional dishes. Here are some delicacies for you to kick-start the new year:
Mango or Manga Pachadi: This traditional dish is intrinsic to the Tamil Puthandu festival. Using raw mango, jaggery, sambar powder masala and betel leaves, a delectable combination of tangy, sweet and bitter dish called Pachadi is prepared. It is best enjoyed with steamed rice, or mixed vegetable curry, sambar and kurukku kaalan.
Manjal Poosanikai Sambar: A highly appetising and traditional food item which is a must-have during Puthandu is Manjal Poosanikai sambar. It is a very nutrient-rich dish made with yellow pumpkin and toor dal. The dish can be relished with hot-boiled rice and ghee.
Aval payasam: It is a traditional south Indian pudding made with sweet flattened rice. The payasam is prepared by soaking the thick flattened rice in milk, followed by boiling in it to achieve a thick, rich creamy consistency. It’s a must-have delectable dessert to celebrate the new year.
Vermicelli kheer: Try this traditional sweet dish this Puthandu. Another version of the payasam is this pudding made with roasted seviyan or vermicelli, green cardamom, cashews, milk, ghee, almonds and raisins, and garnished with rose petals.
Arachuvitta Rasam: A healthy dish that is a must-try is Arachuvitta or Kalyana Rasam. This popular food item is prepared by grinding dal, adding pepper flavoured tamarind water in it along with freshly ground rasam spice mix. What’s unique about this native food is that it is extremely gut friendly!
The enjoyment is sure to get multiplied with these must-try Puthandu special recipes.