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Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Ghadaghadiya Tarkari ( An authentic Odia Recipe for Samba Dashami )

'Samba Dashami' evokes images of women getting up early to take a bath before at the crack of dawn. The kitchens come alive with the clanging of utensils and the heavenly aromas drifting out of them. The rising sun rise is greeted with a cacophony of sounds like the blowing of the conch shells (sankha), the 'hulu-huli' ( a kind of sound uttered by mouth) and the ringing of bells. This ritual is observed for the good health and long life of the children and the mother usually offers a particular dish (year after year) to the Sun God for each one of brood. Usually various kinds of Pitha or sweets are offered along with the Ghadaghadiya tarkari. Another variety of prasad is offered to the Sun God during the noon. The final prasad is offered to Lord Yama in a ritual known as the 'Mahakala Puja'. This pooja is done at night and 'Budha Chakuli' is offered to the God.

The story of Samba Dashami is attributed to Samba, the son of Lord Krishna. It is said that Samba who was  afflicted with leprosy had prayed to the Sun God for 12 long years and finally he was cured. The temple dedicated to the Sun God still stands on the Chandrabhaga beach (near Konark temple). Devotees throng this place on the day of Samba Dashami.

Since it is offered to the God, 'Ghadaghadiya Tarkari' does not contain any onion or garlic. The vegetables which go into it are supposed to benefit those suffering from cold and cough, both of which are common ailments during the winter months. Samba Dashami is celebrated on the 10th day of the Shukla Pakhya (waxing moon) during the Odia month of Pausa. This year it falls on 31st December.

Read on  -

Preparation Time - 20 mins (plus extra time required to chop all the vegetables)

Ingredients -

  • 1 cup mati alu /yam (cubed)
  • 1 cup kakharu/pumpkin (cubed)
  • 1/2 cup amrutabhanda/raw papaya (cubed)
  • 1/2 cup shakarkand/sweet potato (cubed)
  • 1/2 cup saru/taro (cubed)
  • 1/2 cup alu/potato (cubed)
  • 1/2 cup mula/radish (cubed)
  • 1/2 cup baigana/eggplant (cubed)
  • 1/2 cup kancha kadali/raw banana (cubed)
  • 1 cup simba/broad beans (inch long pieces)
  • 1 cup jhudunga/yard long beans (inch long pieces)
  • 2-3 medium sized tomatoes (halved)
  • 1/2 cup gajar/carrot (cubed) (optional)
  • 1/2 cup potola/pointed gourd (cubed) (optional)
  • 1/2 cup janhi/ridge gourd(cubed) (optional)
  • 1 cup boiled lentils ( mix of bengal gram, kabuli chana, whole green moong, yellow peas) (optional)
  • 1/2 cup green peas (optional)
  • 1 cup fried badi
  • 2-3 dry red chilis
  • 1-2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp roasted cumin-chili powder
  • 2 tsp oil
  • 1 tsp ghee
  • 1/3 tsp kala luna/black salt
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • salt to taste
  • fistful of coriander leaves

Preparation - Wash and clean all the vegetables. Some of them like raw banana, eggplant have a tendency to blacken if left in the open for too long. So, immerse them in a bowl of water to which a little turmeric has been added.

Cooking - Heat the oil in a large wok/degchi. Add the broken red chilis and cumin seeds to it. Once it gets spluttering, add vegetables like yam, potato, sweet potato, raw banana, pumpkin, carrot and papaya. Saute for a few minutes before adding 2 cup boiling water, salt and turmeric. Cover with a heavy lid and allow to boil for 3-4 mins

Add the remaining vegetables along with the lentils and let it boil for another 5-6 mins or till the veggies are cooked.

Finally add the roasted cumin-chili powder and coriander leaves just before removing from the flame.

Add the black salt and badi when serving.

This curry is usually served piping hot and tastes good with parathas.

Note - If making this curry on a regular day, one can add some fried onions, GG paste and freshly grated coconut to it.


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