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Sunday, October 20, 2013

Habisa Dalma ( Kartika Masa Special Dalma )

Kartika Masa is perhaps the holiest month in the Hindu Calendar. Fasting on the Mondays of this month has a special significance as mentioned in the Puranas. Most people in Orissa give up non vegetarian items (and also onions and garlic in some cases) for the entire month. If not for the entire month, atleast the last five days or 'Panchuka' as it is called in oriya is strictly abided by many.

Womenfolk usually keep a fast and eat once a day on the Mondays of Kartika masa. Their meals consist of arwa anna, habisa dalma and aau khatta. This is a special kind of Dalma that is prepared without turmeric and the moong dal that is to be used is not roasted as usual. Only a few vegetables are sanctioned for this recipe. As 'Habisa' was primarily observed by widows in the earlier times, certain restrictions are imposed on the diet. But now a days quite a few married women observe the fasts and even a few rare men have started following these customs.

This changing profile of the devotees following Habisa has brought about a lot of change in the way this dalma is now prepared. Now people have also started adding turmeric and various vegetables. In fact some married women have this superstitious belief that turmeric should be added for making the dalma auspicious. Defying the very reason why widows are forced to skip adding turmeric. Personally, I don't buy any of this logic. Moreover I can't even use vegetables like Taro and yam as I have developed an allergy to these .

So, I will be sticking to the recipe that my MIL follows ( BTW i have added a pinch of turmeric as my son is a little picky ). Read on:


















Preparation Time - 15 mins

Ingredients -


  • 1 1/2 cups split moong dal
  • 1/2 cup saru/arbi/colocassia
  • 1/2 cup kancha kadali/raw banana
  • 1/2 cup mati alu/yam
  • 1/2 cup amrutabhanda/raw papaya ( Not used in authentic one )
  • 1/2 cup mula/radish (optional) ( Not used in authentic one )
  • 1 cup kakharu/pumpkin ( Not used in authentic one )
  • 1-2 pieces of aau (slightly crushed)
  • 2-3 whole red chillis ( Not used in authentic one )
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds ( Not used in authentic one )
  • 1 tsp jeera-lanka gunda ( roasted and powdered cumin seeds and dry red chilli )
  • 1 bay leaf
  • salt to taste
  • 2 tsp ghee
  • 1 tsp crushed ginger
  • grated coconut for garnishing


















Cooking - Heat the ghee in a pressure cooker. Add broken red chillis, cumin seeds and bay leaf. Fry for 20 seconds. (Skip the above step if you want to keep it really authentic. But it tastes much better this way. The logic behind this step is that Habisa dalma shud not be tempered hence some people add these tempering ingredients while cooking itself. Crazy logic rite ? But when has religion n logic ever gone together !)

Wash and transfer the dal along with 4 cups of water to the pressure cooker. Wash and add all the vegetables to it. Add the bay leaf too if you are skipping the tempering. Close lid and cook for 1-2 whistles.

Remove from flame and allow steam to escape before opening the lid. Add the crushed ginger, jeera-lanka gunda and grated coconut.

Serve with arwa anna (raw rice) and Oou Khatta / sagaa bhajja.


















This is offered as prasad to Dhabaleshwara ( Lord Shiva ) by the devotees before consumption.



















This above pic is a earlier one . I have used quite a few vegetables in this one and have also used a bit of tempering !!








6 comments:

  1. My fasting is very basic, maybe for one meal but I incorporate veggie dishes in our every day meal. Will love to try out this recipe but some of ingredients may not be available over here. Still I am sure other types can be added for the lovely outcome.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi,

    Nice blog and nice work. Though this is my first visit I will try visiting it often.

    Sometimes, visit mine too
    http://sharmistha-fanaticfoodie.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hi ,

    Nice blog and nice work. Though this is my first visit I will try visiting it often.

    Sometimes, visit mine too
    http://sharmistha-fanaticfoodie.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Aau khata is the attraction of Karthika maasa habisha. But, this vegetable is not available outside Orissa. Can you please tell us the english name of the vegetable? What could be the reason for not use of the vegetable else where?

      Delete
    2. The English name is elephant apple. Apart from odias, bengalis and assamese eat it. You may try to search for Chalta(Bengali name)

      Delete
  4. Thank you for the recipe.It is one of my favourite veg cuisine.

    ReplyDelete

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