Holi is a very colorful vibrat Hindu festival of India. Its a riot of colors. It marks the end of the harsh winters and the arrival of spring. It is the time to celebrate the natures’s bounty and abundance of food. So one may ask what food is eaten during Holi ????
Traditonally many kinds of holi special food items are prepared across the country. Each region has its own speciality. Gujiya and Thandai in North, Puran Poli in Maharashtra and Elo Jhelo in Bengal. But there are few recipes which are relished across the entire country. We have listed them here for you.
What’s a holi without Gujiya. Ghujiya is synonymous to Holi. No holi celebration is complete without gujiya. It is known by various names – karanji, ghugra or karajikai. When you think of Holi the first thing that comes to mind is Gujiya. Ghujiya is generally prepared around Holi festival only. The deep fried soft flaky crust of gujiya filled with khoya(mawa)and dry fruits and dessicated coconut makes it an amazing sweet. Earlier only mawa or khoya filling gujiyas were popular but these days you can find all sorts of fillings in gujiyas like Paan Gulkand Gujiya, Chocolate Cinnamom Gujiya, Thandai Mawa Gujiya and many more innovative ones.
Dahi bhalle is the most liked chaat in North India. It is the most preferred and relished holi special food item. The soft dal balls dipped in chilled yogurt preparation and garnished with with green and sweet chutney along spices makes it ultra delish. The best thing about dahi bhalle is that you can make them in advance and refrigerate them for later use. They taste better when served chill. Dilli ke dahi bhalle are to die for.
Mithi Lassi, Rose Lassi, Masala Lassi, Mint Lassi. Lassi is the star drink of Holi. Around Holi the mornings are cold but the afternoons tend to be hot. Drinking chilled lassi not only kills the heat but replenishes your gut too. It is very healthy and tasty. The yogurt is a very good probiotic. Some of the best combinations are Chole Bhature with lassi, kachoori aloo with lassi, paranthe with lassi and the best one Sarsoon ka saag-makki ki roti with lassi. Lassi is nothing but thick version of buttermilk. So go ahead and make it this Holi.
Ask any North Indian whats the best party snack and unanimously you will hear – PAKORE. Be it dal ke pakore, aloo, gobhi, onion, palak ke or bread pakore – all are very popular street food in North India. During Holi bhaang ke pakore are also prepared. Pakore, friends, gossip and drinks what more can one ask for during Holi. Holi is the time to connect with friends and family but a long winter.
is a cool, refreshing and energizing drink relished during holi festivities. Thandai is yet another traditional Holi food item. Thandai is a Royal drink in which all thandai masalas are used like cashew ,cardamom ,poppy seeds ,black pepper ,almonds , fennel seed (saunf) and rose petals all of these have cooling properties. It is a must for all the Holi Parties.. A sip of this chilled thandai during the holi party and you are all re-energised. In some parts of India where bhaang is grown Bhaang thandai is also very popular.
Be it Aloo tikki chaat, papdi chaat, papdi-dahi bhalla chaat, golgappa chaat, tokri or katori chaat. Dilli ki chaat and Agra ki chaat are the most popular chaat in India. Chaat are very easy to assemble and can be prepared well in advance. In any party the chaat counter is the most crowded one. The sweet, tangy and spicy mix of the chaat makes it an unusal combination.
Kanji is a seasonal drink prepared from fresh black carrots, fermented in earthen pots for few days just around Holi. It is super refreshing, healthy and delicious drink. Best of all it has literally no calories or artificial flavours. Kanji aids in digestion and is good for the guts. It is beautiful looking and an unusual drink.
Kanji vada is a very popular street food. Fried balls of lentil called vada are added to the fermented drink and is called kanji vada.
Kachori is generally made during Holi festival. Kachori is a fried pastry ball just like poori with some stuffing in inside. Some prepare with the dry stuffing which can survive for a month or two and are best relished with the piping hot tea or the ones made with aloo pithi (stuffing) or dal pithi. They are generally served with aloo sabji and to gulp them down lassi or thandai is served it them.
Malpua are fried pancakes served with rabri which is thick milk reduced on slow fire for an hour or two and then flavoured. The combination of malpua with rabri is lethal. It is a very tricky and time comsuming dish to prepare but the end product is simply delish.
Besan sev is quite popular during Holi festival. It is nothing fancy but the crispiness of the deep fried sev is mindblowing. It is very addictive. Once you start munching on it you cannot stop yourself. Earlier our grandmothers had innovative simple ways to make delicious foods. One of them is besan sev.
Another simple and easy to make food eaten during holi is Namakpare. Namakpare are just all purpose flour seasoned with salt and ghee and then deep fried. Though it sounds so meagre but the taste is fantastic. It is a perfect evening snacks. During holi it is prepared in bulks and kept in air tight containers. If any friends came over to wish Holi, just open the jar and serve them. They stay good for days.
As the name suggest, “Shakar” – sugar. These are sweet, crunchy and light generally diamond shaped. During holi shakarpare are prepared and shared with all the friends and family. Easy to prepare with long shelf life, shakarparas are integral part of the holi celebrations and festivities since time immemorial. Sometimes people coat them with sugar syrup or gur syrup and sometimes people prepare them with whole wheat flour and saunf too.
So these are some of the most popular traitional holi food. Though these days these special food items are prepared through out the year but they are best relished only when it is HOLI… it is the energy and the company of friends and family that makes these delicacies all the more delish. HAPPY HOLI !!