Sunday, January 28, 2018

Koli cuisine: Adding tadka at fisher folk weddings

Splashed ! across publications. Where I talk to Press Trust of India (PTI) about the Koli weddings and traditions.  Where food especially fish is a big deal.

PTI is the the largest news agency in India. Here is the original link.

You can also read on Outlook India, India Today, Medium, Business Standard etc.

Further Reading


The Yellow Glow Of The Turmeric and my Halad Menu

My wedding posts: A Koli Weds A Parsi

The most important ritual for the Kolis is the Halad and so the meal following it.

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Discovery: Marayoor Jaggery

This write up was first published on FB. It got appreciation from a lot of food lovers so bringing it here under a new label "Discovery"

Marayoor jaggery has always fascinated me. In South Indian temple paysams I wondered how they achieved the rich dark color? Why was it more sweeter than our Maharashtra's golden jaggery? Answers to all these I found out only last night on google. I bought a 1kg of these stone like balls only because a shop in Munnar mentioned on its front that they were selling Marayoor jaggery. My intuition told me that it must be special. All the research has me smitten. This jaggery has 97% sugar content. The sugarcane is grown in the Marayoor rainforest region. I think we drove thru this region  on our recent road trip through Kerala. The pH of the soil makes the wonderful molasses and ofcourse it is unbleached and may be organic. 

Last night I had pressure cooked Chana dal with the aim of making Parsi chana ni daar. So divided the dal into two portions and made the savory chana ni daar to go with our rotlis and made an impromptu payasam too. With Parsi dairy ghee drizzled on it. The meal was so satiating even though simple. The finicky bawa loved it too.

Besides the jaggery I was floored by the history of Marayoor which dates back to stone age and relics of the past. Hope to visit this region again.

Monday, January 15, 2018

The First Sankrant

The sugar bead jewelry made by Kavita Dhuri Kadu

Sankrant 2016 came fast. It was the first festival after my marriage in Dec 2015. My family brought me gifts of a black saree for Sankrant and the sugar bead jewelry as is the tradition in most communities in Maharashtra. This is not a Koli tradition but we accepted it in our family as my SIL Mangala Vahini wanted to do it for me as is her Maratha family's tradition. It was done for my Nephew and his wife Dipti too. Haldi kunku is traditionally for women but we included the men too. The sugar bead jewelry for both me and Dipti was made by our dear friend Kavita Dhuri Kadu. 

The tradition of a black saree is practiced in Maharashtra as on the day of Sankrant the sun starts its movement to the Northern hemisphere and marks the end of Winter solstice. It is the coldest day of winter.  It is believed that wearing black on the Sankrant ensures that the rest of the year is a bright one while it keeps the body warm. 

I had ordered this Bengali kantha work saree from 'Suryabartta' owned by Sayantani's  Mother but I was unable to wear it on the day as I had left it in Dad's place and funnily brought just the blouse to my sasural. So my bro Vijay had to rush to Dadar market to get another black saree for me which you see in the first pic.

That's Dipti my nephew's beautiful wife in all her Sankrant finery. 


Dipti & Sujal

The Parsi vegetarian dinner I had cooked up for the family on that day that year.

Such a memorable day it was!

On Trail