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Sri Panchami( Saraswati Puja)


Vasant Panchami day is dedicated to Maa Saraswati, the Goddess of knowledge, music, arts, science and technology. Goddess Saraswati is worshipped on Vasant Panchami day. Vasant Panchami is also known as Shri Panchami and Saraswati Panchami.

People worship Goddess Saraswati to get enlighten with knowledge and to get rid of lethargy, sluggishness and ignorance. Traditionally during this festival children are taught to write their first words. This ritual of initiating education to children is known as Akshar-Abhyasam or Vidya-Arambham/Praasana which is one of the famous rituals of Vasant Panchami. Schools and colleges arrange pujas in the morning to seek blessing of the Goddess.

Purvahna Kaal, which falls between late morning and early afternoon, is considered to decide Vasant Panchami day. Vasant Panchami is celebrated on the day when Panchami Tithi prevails during Purvahna Kaal. Due to which Vasant Panchami might also fall on Chaturthi Tithi.

Many astrologers consider Vasant Panchami as Abujha day which is auspicious to start all good work. According to this belief whole Vasant Panchami day is auspicious to perform Saraswati Puja.

Although there is no special time to perform Saraswati Puja on Vasant Panchami day one should make sure that Puja is done when Panchami Tithi is prevailing. Many times Panchami Tithi doesn’t prevail whole of the day on Vasant Panchami day hence we believe that it is important to do Saraswati puja within Panchami Tithi.

DrikPanchang.com suggests Saraswati Puja time during Purvahna kaal while Panchami Tithi is prevailing. Purvahna kaal falls between late morning and early afternoon which is also the time when most people perform Saraswati Puja including schools and colleges in India.

FOODS:

1.Khichuri/ Khichdi (an Indian dish of rice and dal with vegetables)

Ingredients:

* 250 gms. Basmati rice or Scented rice
* 250 gms. mung dal
* 150 gms boiled vegetables (potato, cauliflower, beans, tomato etc.)
* 2 tablespoon mustard oil
* 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
* 1-2 bay leaf
* 2-3 red dry chili
* 2 teaspoon ginger paste
* 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
* 1 teaspoon cumin powder
* 1 teaspoon coriander powder
* Salt & sugar according to taste

Method

1. Wash rice & dal in two different pan.
2. Boil the rice .
3. When rice becomes half cooked then add the dal.
4. Now rice & dal are prepared, and keep aside.
5. Heat the oil in a pan & add cumin seeds, red dry chili, bay leaf,
6. Then add ginger paste.
7. Add the boiled vegetables & sauté with this spices.
8. Mix this mixture with rice-dal preparation, also add turmeric, cumin, coriander powder.
9. Add salt & sugar according to taste.
10. Kichuri is prepared. Serve it hot.


2.Mixed Sabji (mixed vegetables) (veg)

Ingredients:

1/2 kg mixed vegetables (beans, cauliflower, potato, carrots, cabbage, pumpkin, tomato etc.) (cut into medium pieces)
2-3 green chilli
1-teaspoon panch-phoran
1-teaspoon turmeric powder
2-tablespoon chopped coriander leave
2-tablespoon mustard oil
2-cup water
Salt & sugar according to taste

Method

1.Heat the oil in a pan & add the panch-phoran and green chilli for sauté.
2.Add the mixed vegetables and fry it until light brown.
3.Add turmeric powder, salt and sugar for taste.
4.Add water and cook it for 10 min in medium flame.
5.The sabji is ready, sprinkle the coriander leave.
6.Serve it with steamed plain rice or roti, paratha etc.

3.Begoon Vaja (brinjal fry) 

 Ingredients:

3-4 Brinjal (wash & cut into big pieces)
1-teaspoon turmeric powder
Salt & sugar to taste
1 cup of mustard oil (for deep frying)

Method:

At first marinate the brinjal with turmeric, salt & sugar.
Heat the oil in a pan.
Give the brinjal pieces in a pan.
Fry pieces both side until light brown.
Keep them on paper napkin to soak the excess oil.
Enjoy Begoon vaja with Plain rice

4.Kheer (preparation of milk & rice)


Ingredients:

* Basmati rice (shorter variety) 200gm
* 2 and 1/2 liter of milk
* Sugar as per taste (it is a sweet dish)
* Elachi 1/2 teaspoonful
* 2 teaspoonfuls of raisins (dried grapes) and cashew nut (Anacardium occidentale)
* One pinch of saffron powder (optional)

Method:

1. Rinse the rice in water, then boil it with milk in low flame. Add the cardamom. Stir continuously otherwise the milk will get burned at the base of the pot.
2. When the rice is completely boiled, add sugar and mix it homogeneously. If you like, you may add saffron to it (it is not compulsory, it is used only to color the kheer, otherwise taste remains same)
3. Your kheer is prepared now. Add raisins and cashew nut to the preparation. You may serve it hot or put it in refrigerator to serve later.

5.Tomato Chutney (sweet)

 
Ingredients:

* 250 gm tomato (washed & cut into medium pieces)
* 50 gm dates (khejur) (washed)
* 25 gm raisins (washed)
* 100 gm sugar
* 1-teaspoon rai (black mustard seeds)
* 1-teaspoon turmeric powder
* Salt according to taste
* 2-tablespoon mustard oil
* 2-cup water
* 2-tablespoon lemon juice.

Method:

1. Heat the oil in a pan & sauté the rai.
2. Add tomato and cooked it for 2 min.
3. Add turmeric powder & salt.
4. Add the dates, raisins & sugar and mixed properly.
5. Add water and cooked it in a low flame for 10 min until the gravy become thick.
6. Tomato chutney is ready.
7. Sprinkle the lemon juice and keep it in a air-tight container.


6.TOPA KUL CHUTNEY

 

Ingredients

  • 20 Ripe Topa Kul/Jujube/Ber/Elachihannu
  • 8 Dry Red Chilies
  • Tamarind Pulp 2tbsp
  • Sugar 3tbsp
  • Oil 2tbsp
  • Mustard Seeds 1tsp
  • Salt to taste

Method

  • Wash the plums and dry them. Chop the fruit into big pieces and remove the stone. 
  • Grind the pieces to a paste using ½ cup water. 
  • Heat 1tsp Oil and add Red Chilies and fry for 30 seconds. 
  • Remove and grind to a powder. Heat the rest of the Oil in a thick-bottomed pan and add Mustard seeds, when they splutter, add the Kul paste, Chili Powder, Tamarind Pulp, Sugar and Salt and mix well. 
  • Add 1 Cup of water and cook for 5 minutes on low flame. 
  • Remove to a serving dish and serve with Khichuri.

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