Monday, February 23, 2009


Today is Maha Shivaratri. Literal meaning - " The Great Night of Shiva". It is one of the most important days for Shiva devotees. The day is decided based on the lunar calendar followed by most Indians. It is considered to be a very auspicious day and majority of the devotees observe Vrata (fasting) and Jaagaran (sleepless vigil through the night). Married women fast for the long life and health of their spouses. Unmarried girls observe the fast on this day as it is believed this will bring them a husband like Shiva himself ( Shiva is considered to be the ideal husband ). Staunch ritual followers go without even a drop of water, but most of the people observe a milk, liquids and fruits diet. To make it easier for all the family(including children and the elderly) to participate in the fasting, different regions have come up with fasting food recipes. It allows for a number of grains, vegetables and some spices to be used on this day. Mostly, I think that any Saatvik food ( fresh, less spicey) may pass as a fasting food.
About sixteen years ago I heard of a very popular fasting food for this day - Sabudana Khichdi. And to be very honest, I started fasting from that year onwards to be able to make and eat this yummy khichdi. The religious and spiritual aspect caught up with me a little later ( thankfully!!) but I lost touch with the khichdi. Probably because I never had a recipe all those years ago and the two times I made it, I could not get it out of the karahi nor could I get the ladle out of the lump. :-D ha ha ha.
Fast forward to 2008 and thanks to Google sher, I got the recipe. And it really is yummy!!! I made it a few times already and turns out perfect everytime. So that's what is on the menu today.
Sabudana Khichdi (a dish made of tapioca pearls )
Aaloo sabzi (Potato curry, very mild)
Pesara kattu ( a simple daal using Moong Dal)
Semia payasam
Of course I'll have to post the recipes after I make them. And in the meantime, I hope to fast keeping in mind what I'm fasting for ( VC, Princess and all my friends and family), not just the food. In short all the blessings in my life given me by Shiva since the first time I observed fast on Maha Shivaratri. And most of all I am going to fast and give thanks for the ability to see and remember the Happiness of Life and Living.

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