On Makar Sankranti, myriad shades of colors fill the sky as children race their kites to the Sun. As the Sun transitions into the zodiac sign of Makara (Capricorn) on its celestial path, with longer days and shorter nights ahead, the day marks a beginning of a new chapter. With a dip in the holy rivers, devotees pray for a fresh start, and cleansing of the mind. Carrying different names in different states, Pongal in Tamil Nadu, Maghi in Punjab and Haryana, Bihu in Assam, and Lohri in North India, the festival celebrates the food, the harvest, and the hard work of the farmers.
From different corners of India, we gathered 13 Sankranti delicacies for you. Which ones delight you the most, that’s for you to choose. Dive into these abundances of sweetness and turn the pages to the new chapters in your life.
1. Til Ke Laddu:
This is a Maharashtrian Sweet that has to have a mandatory appearance during Makar Sankranti. Til, gur (jaggery), peanuts, ghee, and elaichi - with these simple ingredients, the laddu is a must-try and easy-to-prepare dish. Tarla Dalal’s blog has the perfect recipe for it.
Gajak is a traditional dish of the Bhind-Morena region of Madhya Pradesh in India, prepared with jaggery, peanuts, or sesame seeds, perfect for consumption during winter. SIFY Bawarchi’s blog explains the recipe well.
3. Puran Poli/Bobbatlu:
Puran Poli is the highlight of the Holi and Ganpati festivals in Maharashtra, India, and also a famous dish in South India. Made with a blend of basic ingredients from the pantry - flour, jaggery, chana dal, cardamom powder, and coconut, preparing this dish is a delight in itself. Hebbars Kitchen’s blog shows a simple approach to making this recipe.
4. Sweet Pongal/Sakkarai Pongal:
Prepared with rice, moong lentils, ghee, jaggery/sugar, nuts, and cardamoms, this sweet recipe is a specialty of South India during the festive season. Swathi’s Recipes’ blog shows the step-by-step process of making it at home.
Kheer, a sweet pudding is prepared with rice and is one of the easiest dishes to make. Festivals are incomplete without making Kheer. AllRecipes’ blog explains an easy way to make Kheer with minimum ingredients.
A traditional milk-based Indian sweet made using milk, nutmeg, cardamom, and sugar, Basundi adds a sweeter twist to the already flavorful festivals. Whisk Affair’s blog has a step-by-step guide to making the recipes along with pictures.
7. Coconut Burfi:
If you want more sweetness in your life, look no further than this recipe. With its fluffy and crispy taste of grated coconut, you can never have enough of this dessert. Subbu’s Kitchen’s blog shows a simpler version to prepare Coconut Burfi.
This traditional South Indian recipe is a must-to-have during the Sankranti festival. Made with rice flour, jaggery, sesame seeds, ghee, and oil, the dish is famous in North Indian states as well. Vah Reh Vah’s blog has an easy method to prepare the dish.
9. Nolen Gurer Payesh:
Similar to Kheer, this dessert from West Bengal brings its date palm jaggery sweetness to the table. Also known as Payesh, or Payasam, the dish shows the simple and delightful culture of the state. Bong Eats’ blog shows how a simple rice dish can be made sweeter.
10. Chhena Poda:
The specialty of Odisha, this sweet melt-in-the-mouth is best in taste when it’s eaten fresh. In the legends, the dish is called to be a favorite of Lord Jagannath in Puri, Odisha. Dassana’s Veg Recipes’ blog demonstrates a step-by-step guide to preparing the dessert quickly.
11. Atta Laddu:
This winter dessert, primarily from Punjab/North India, is one of the easiest dishes to make. It makes a great snack option for kids and adults alike. With minimal ingredients, the only effort it takes is in roasting a huge amount of atta. Dassana's Veg Recipes' blog shows how to make your festivals sweeter.
12. Murmura Laddu:
Going by different names in different states, these puffed rice laddus are a brilliant choice for snacks and can be stored for any surprise visits by guests. It takes better when made with crisp puffed rice, and made with dark-colored jaggery. You can check out the recipe on Hebbars Kitchen's blog.
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