Magh Bihu 2022: Enjoy these lip-smacking traditional delicacies from Assam
- Magh Bihu 2022: Made with simple ingredients, these delectable traditional Assamese recipes are must-have on Magh Bihu.
Magh Bihu 2022: The harvest festivals are celebrated with great enthusiasm in different parts of India, be it Magh Bihu in Assam, Lohri in Punjab, Makar Sankranti in Northern India, Uttarayan in Gujarat, or Pongal in Tamil Nadu. Magh Bihu celebrated in Assam is the time for people of the state to make merry, partake in different kinds of games, sing songs and eat good food. Also known as Bhogali Bihu, the festival cannot be complete without bhog or feast.
Celebrated over two days, the first day of Magh Bihu is known as Uruka or Bihu eve. Young people erect makeshift huts called Meji and Bhelaghar from bamboo, leaves and thatch to enjoy the feast. These huts are burnt by people on the second day of the festival as part of the ritual of Meji Jwaluwa.
The festival is synonymous with great food and various kinds of rice cakes and sweets made of til (sesame) and jaggery are prepared on this day. Here are five popular Magh Bihu foods that people enjoy on this day.
1. Til Pitha
The cylinder-shaped sweet delight is a must-have on Magh Bihu. It is made from a local rice variety known as glutinous rice which has opaque grains and becomes sticky when cooked. The rice is soaked, strained and dried nicely for a couple of hours and turned into a fine powder using a grinder. Roasted black sesame are then ground coarsely and mixed with jaggery to be used as a stuffing in Til Pitha. Rice powder is spread evenly in round shape over a heated tawa and the mixture of til and jaggery is spread over it. The rice powder after getting cooked can be rolled with the help of a knife or back of a spoon. This is how the delectable Til Pithas are made.
2. Narikolor Laru
The Assamese version of coconut balls or nariyal laddoo has a very simple recipe that can be made with minimum ingredients. Grated coconut is mixed with sugar and kept aside for around half-n-hour. The mix is then cooked on low flame for around 25 minutes and transferred to the plate. It is then rolled into small balls.
3. Murir Laru
This can be made in a jiffy and all you need are just four simple ingredients - ghee, jaggery, water and murmura or puffed rice. Add a bit of ghee to a pan along with two cups of jaggery. Stir it continuously. To check the right consistency, add some jaggery syrup to a bowl of water and if the jaggery drops float over it, your syrup is ready. Add puffed rice or murmura or muri to the syrup and mix well. Roll into small balls.
4. Ghila Pitha
Soak rice for 2 hours, dry it and then grind it. Once the fine rice powder is ready, add it to a wok, and stir it for 5-7 minutes. Take 100 gm jaggery and add it to a separate pan. Add 1/2 cup water to it and stir. Take out rice flour in a vessel, add a pinch of salt, two cups of grated coconut and mix well. Add jaggery syrup to it and mix. Make small balls. Heat oil in a wok and drop the balls gently. Fry well till they are golden.
5. Poka Mithoi
Heat the pan and add 2.5 cups of rice flour to it and stir well. Add black cumin 1/2tbsp and keep stirring. Add 1/2 tbsp black pepper, 1/2 tsp cardamom powder and stir. Remove from flame and keep aside for 10 minutes. Heat a wok and add two cups of jaggery, add 1/2 cup water, stir it continuously till 1 string consistency. Add jaggery syrup to rice flour and mix well. Make round balls.