The festive season is upon us and the country is enveloped in a feeling of merry-making and enthusiasm. Almost every part of the country will be observing different festivities around this time – while Delhi, UP, Gujarat, Maharashtra, and other states will be celebrating the nine-day festival of Navaratri, the eastern part of the country will gear up for one of its biggest festivals – Durga Puja. Durga Puja, also known as Durgautsov, is the five-day festivity where devotees worship goddess Durga, and these five days are Shashti, Maha Saptami, Maha Ashtami, Maha Navami, and Vijaya Dashami. On the last day of the festival, Durga visarjan takes place and the devotees submerge the goddess’s idol in water ending the celebrations. The dates of Durga Puja 2021 are as follows:
When Is Durga Puja 2021
Shashti – 11th October 2021
Maha Saptami – 12th October 2021
Maha Ashtami – 13th October 2021
Maha Navami – 14th October 2021
Viajaya Dashami – 15th October 2021
Durga Puja is celebrated with fervor in eastern parts of the country
Significance Of Durga Puja:
Goddess Durga Is considered a fierce goddess who won the battles against the demon ‘Mahishasura’ and exemplified the ideas of good over evil. According to the legends, the story goes that Mahishasura had won a boon from Lord Brahma that no man could ever kill him. Upon obtaining the boon, he started to think of himself as an invincible lord and started tormenting everybody, including the devas or lords residing in heaven. Feeling helpless, the devas approached Lord Vishnu. Lord Vishnu, Lord Shiva, and Lord Brahma together evoked Durga to kill Mahishasura. The Goddess, in a long and dreary battle, defeated the demon on the auspicious day of Vijaya Dashami. And that is why the goddess is also called ‘Mahishasura Mardini’.
The warrior goddess is referred to as ‘Maa’ or mother who can be seen holding a bow and arrow, a snake, flame, trishul among others in her hands to protect her devotees from all troubles. She is the epitome of feminine prowess, determination, wisdom, and many other things.
Festive foods for Durga Puja:
As much as the festival is about the victory of good over evil and Maa Durga’s unforgettable fight like every other festival in the country Durga Puja too cannot be complete without some delicious bhog recipes. If you want to surround yourself in the aromatic preparations of bhog just like west Bengal, here are 3 easy recipes you can make this Durga Puja:
A Bengali style khichdi, or Khichuri as known in the local dialect is a must-try dish during the puja season. There are high chances you will be served the classic bhog khichuri on almost all puja pandals, but you can whip this up with ease in your kitchen as well. All you need is some rice, moong dal, some veggies, and this easy recipe right here.
Khichdi is a delicious one-pot rice dish famous in India
2. Beguni :
Another quick treat to add to the side of your khichuri is this no-fuss eggplant fritter that is so easy to make and can be paired with almost everything. Just dip thin slices of eggplant in spiced besan batter and deep fry until perfectly golden, munch on them hot as they tend to get soggy with time. Here is an easy recipe for you.
3. Labra :
This authentic mixed vegetable preparation is just what you need to complete a true Durga Puja meal. Spicy and flavourful, this mushy mixed veg curry is made with pumpkins, potato, radish, cauliflower, and a mixture of simple Indian spices known as panch phoron. A true Bengali delicacy, try making it with this easy recipe right here.
Labra is a curry made with a mix of different vegetables
4. Mishti Doi :
Mishti Doi needs no introduction in the list of Bengali foods; the delicious milky curd is a regular feature in almost all kinds of Bengali platters. If you thought that it’s something that can only be found in those Bengali sweet shops, we are here to break the myth. Because with this easy recipe you can make a delicious mishti doi right in your kitchen. Give it a try today.
To end the meal and the celebrations on a sweet note, here is the recipe for the Bengali kheer known as payesh. But, since it is the festive season, treat yourself to a paneer payesh that is much richer and creamier than the regular one. Click here for the recipe.
Payesh is the Bengali Kheer
Happy Durga Puja 2021 everyone!