Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Janamasthami

Krishna Janmashtami or Janamashtami, is also known as Krishnashtami. It is celebrated in different regions of India by differnet names like Saatam Aatham, Gokulashtami, Ashtami Rohini, Srikrishna Jayanti, etc. It is an annual commemoration of the birth of the Hindu deity Krishna.

This festival is celebrated on the eighth day (Ashtami) of the Krishna Paksha (dark fortnight) of the month of Bhadrapada which every year falls in the month of August or September. God krishna was famous for his Ras Lilas. The term Ras means Aesthetic and Lila means play or dance, which roughly translates the meaning of Ras-Lila as " Dance of Divine Love". While the Rasa lila re-creates the flirtatious aspects of Krishna's youthful days, the Dahi Handi celebrate God's playful and mischievous side, where teams of young men form human towers to reach a high-hanging pot of butter and break it. This tradition, also known as uriadi, is a major event in Tamil Nadu on Gokulashtami. 

Krishna was the 8th son of Devaki and Vasudeva. And was born to kill Mama Kans.
Mathura (in present day Mathura district, Uttar Pradesh) was the capital of the Yadavas, to which Krishna's parents Vasudeva and Devaki belonged. King Kansa, Devaki's brother,had ascended the throne by imprisoning his father, King Ugrasena. Afraid of a prophecy that predicted his death at the hands of Devaki's eighth son, Kansa had the couple locked into a prison cell. After Kansa killed the first six children, and Devaki's apparent miscarriage of the seventh (which was actually a secret transfer of the infant to Rohini as Balarama), Krishna was born.

After his birth Vishnu ordered Vasudeva to take Krishna to Gokul to Nanda and Yashoda where he can live safely,away from his evil Uncle Kansa.So Vasudeva took Krishna with him and crossed Yamuna to reach Gokul .There everyone was asleep,so he quietly kept him there and returned with Yashoda's daughter.Kansa,thinking her to be Devki's eight child,threw her on a stone.But she rose in air and transformed into Yogmaya(who is Vishnu's helper)and warned Kansa about his death.Then she disappeared.Krishna grew up in Gokul with his brother Balram. Then he returned to Mathura and killed Kansa with the help of his brother,Balram.

In many regions of India, Janamashtami is celebrated by fasting and staying up until midnight, the time when Krishna is believed to have been born. In some parts of India, it is celebrated as Dahi-Handi. The handi is a clay pot filled with buttermilk that is positioned at a convenient height prior to the event. The topmost person on the human pyramid tries to break the handi by hitting it with a blunt object. When the handi breaks, the buttermilk is spilled over the entire group, symbolizing their achievement through unity.


There are few foods made especially for this vrat -


Happy Janamasthami to all

Monday, August 19, 2013

Paneer Tikka

Paneer Tikka- One of my favorite dishes. In my college days, whenever we are eating out, it's one of the dishes we like to order in starters. Never given a thought about how it is made. 

4 years back, my husband got relocated and we came to a new place. Everything was new. New place, new house, new friends, I was liking it there, but I was missing my lovely family back at home. Days passed, and one day during an evening walk, I met a girl (later she became 1 of my good friend). We always use to go for a long walk, long girl friend chats. I read some where few days back, "Eating Healthy helps keep our body healthy, but Woman brains stay Healthy, when they meet their  Girlfriends. "

Ingredients for 4 people-
  1. Paneer cubes - 1/2 kg
  2. Garlic Paste - 2tsp
  3. Ginger paste - 2tsp
  4. Chaat Masala - 1tsp
  5. Chilli Powder - 1 tsp
  6. Tandoori Masala - 1 tsp
  7. Black Pepper powder - 1tsp
  8. Salt - 1tbsp
  9. Yogurt - 3 tbsp
  10. Oil for brushing
  11. Lemon - 1 (quartered)
  12. Onion Sliced into rings - 7-8
  13. Green Bell Pepper - 7-8 ( cut in squares)
Directions - 
  • Mix all ingredients except lemon and oil and leave it aside for 2 hours, and keep it inside the refrigerator for 8-10  hours. 
  • 20 minutes before serving, place the paneer, onions and Green bell peppers on a baking pan, brush it with oil and bake it in a preheated oven for about 10 minutes.
  • Turn it over, again brush it with oil and cook on another side for another 5 minutes.
  • Serve the Tikkas hot, garnished with lemon, onion rings and green bell peppers. 

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Peas Curry ( Mutter ka Jhor)


There are few foods, which we have eaten very regularly while growing up. 1 of those food is Peas curry, also known as " Mutter ka Jhor" in local language. I always tried making it, but never got that taste which we get it when my mom makes it. It is one of the traditional dishes of Bihar. And it goes with a combination. If you change the Combination, the traditional taste will never be the same.

When last time I visited my mom, I asked her the recipe, and this time made it with the same quantity of same ingredients. But, again the taste was not the same. So, I again gave her a call, and asked her bout it. And she replied, " Beta, it's my love which I pour in it, while making it, may be bcoz of which you are not getting the same taste." And then we started matching the ingredients. I missed one of the ingredient, but I liked what my mom said to me. It's her love that makes the dishes all the more tastier.

Now, I understood why my little one always tell me when I makes her favourite dishes, " Mamma, you are the best."

Here, is the recipe for " Mutter ka Jhor" for you guys to try.

Ingredients-

  1. Peas - 1 bowl + 1 handful
  2. Garlic - 2-3 cloves (chopped)
  3. Onion - 1/2 small (chopped)
  4. Tomato - 1 small (diced)
  5. Cumin Seeds- 1tsp
  6. Tez Patta - 3-4 leaves
  7. Green Chilli - 4 sliced
  8. Coriander Powder- 1/2 tsp
  9. Salt to taste
  10. Red Chilli Powder - 1/4 tsp
  11. Aamchur Powder - 1/2 tsp

Directions -

  • Fry the peas in a pan.
  • Remove it from the pan and let it cool down for 15 minutes.

  • Add it in the mixer jar and make a paste of it and keep it aside.
  • In the same pan, add 1tsp of oil and add cumin seeds and let it crackle.
  • Now, Add tez patta and green chilli and fry for 30 seconds. Then, add chopped Garlic, Onion and tomatoes and fry them for a while. Till the tomato pieces get mixed up with onions.

  • Add rest peas, and fry for 5 minutes, on medium flame.
  • Add the peas paste in it, with double amount of water.
  • Add all the spices, and let it get cooked, covered for another 10 minutes on medium flame.
  • Garnish it with chopped Cilantro.
  


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