Indian food is an integral part of religion and other cultural tradition. Every occasion has its repertoire of food. The vegetarian trading community of southern India is known for celebrating its vrattham-s, poojas and festivals by offering elaborate ‘Naivedyams’ (offerings) to the Gods. The ‘Thaligala Paravannam’, is one such exclusive spiritual recipe. This is offered to Mother Gauri on ‘Polala Gowri Vratham' which falls on the ‘Polala Amavasya Day’ during the Tamil month of Avani every year. This puja is performed for the well-being of all the children belonging to the family. The children are also presented with new clothes or jewelry on this festive occasion. Similarly there are several other festivals like ‘Naga Chathurthi’, ‘Garuda Panchami’, ‘Ratha Sapthami’, ‘Sravanam’, ‘Gauri Vratam’, ‘Vinayaka Chaturthi’, ‘Navarathri’ etc., which are performed for the well-being of the maternal, paternal as well as the families of the homemakers. ‘Naivedyams’ when cooked are seldom tested before offering the same to the Gods. The well-being of the entire extended family was considered essential for the well-being of every individual during yonder-years and it holds good for eternity.
Ingredients required for Thaligalu:
1. Raw rice – 1 cup
2. Water – 2 ½ cups
3. Oil – 2 tablespoons
4. Jaggery – 1/4th of a cup
Ingredients required for Paravannam:
1. Grated coconut – 1 cup
2. Jaggery – ½ cup
Procedure for Thaligalu:
Soak the rice in the measured water for an hour. Drain the rice and use some water from the drained water to grind the rice to a smooth paste. Use the remaining drained water to melt the jaggery. Heat the jaggery till it melts completely and filter it. Mix the raw rice paste, the oil and the jaggery water. Heat the sweet batter in a thick bottomed vessel and stir it constantly tell it forms a huge bowl without moisture. Make a big ball from the rice dough and fill the murukku mold with this dough. Squeeze the dough on a cloth, set over a perforated vessel or a plate. Squeeze the remaining dough on the same plate. Using an idly steamer, steam the Thaligalu for about 10 minutes. Once cooked transfer the contents to a plate.
Procedure for Paravannam:
Grind the grated coconut and keep it aside. Melt the jaggery with a small amount of water and filter it. Heat the filtered jaggery, ground coconut paste and steamed Thaligalu together. Switch off, when it starts to boil.
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