Posted on October 28, 2021 at 2:00 PM by Madhu Gadia
October 28, 2021
Happy Holidays! It might seem a little early for holiday wishes, but not in my house. Diwali, a Hindu festival, starts in October. The festivities are about a month long, beginning with Navratri (a nine-day festival), followed by Dussehra, and then Diwali.
Before we proceed to Diwali, Happy Halloween! We always make time for Halloween and Trick-o-Treaters; it's one of my daughter's favorite holidays. Interestingly, pumpkins are also a huge part of Diwali, so I intermingle the decorations.
Diwali, a Festival of Lights
Diwali is an Indian festival celebrated with similar reverence as Christmas or Hanukkah. Almost all Indian religious holidays are based on the lunar calendar, which means the date varies; this year, Diwali is on November 4. Symbolically, Diwali – festival of lights is a celebration of "victory of good over evil" and signifies the uplifting of spiritual darkness. The festivities start almost a month before with various religious and social events. The main components of the festival include; cleaning the house, praying to the goddess Lakshmi for wealth, visiting family and friends, lighting oil lamps, lots and lots of food, and of course fireworks.
For over 25 years, I have hosted a Diwali party. It was an annual event that we loved hosting. I would go all out with the food, lights, fireworks, and playing cards. We always ended the party with teen putti, a card game. Between traveling and Covid-19 restrictions, we were not able to host it the last couple of years. As for now, we are not ready to host a big party. But Manisha, my daughter, just told me she will host a Diwali party this year; the Diwali baton has been passed on to the next generation. :)
Holidays are all about family, friends, and food. It's hard to limit what to make. I just love making a variety of dishes and sharing them with the guests. Here are a few Diwali-inspired vegetarian dishes that you can intermingle with your traditional favorites for a delectable holiday table.
Your guests will have a hard time keeping their chip out of this spicy black-eyed pea dip.
Coconut Sweets (Coconut Burfi)
Barfi is a common Indian dessert. They are typically diamond-shaped sweets aka mithai. This is a super quick barfi that is made with ricotta cheese and dried coconut. If you love coconut, you will love these.
Sweet-and-Sour Winter Squash (Kaddu)
Did you read Jolie's Column - Jolie Predicts: This Recipe Will Go Viral - it's a great addition to the Diwali, Thanksgiving, or Christmas dinner.
Puri (fried bread) makes any meal a celebration. Everyone, young or old, enjoys puris. All I can tell you is to give it a try.
Looking for a potato dish to take to the holiday dinner. Dazzle your friends and family with this potato dish. This potato stew started the Jolie Cooks with Madhu Project. Read Jolie's column on why you should make this recipe - Jolie swoons over potato stew (Lipte Aloo).
For more holiday recipes, see the blog: Let's Celebrate – Indian Buffet. This was featured in the Better Homes and Gardens magazine - Indian Buffet for less than $100.
Family and feasts go hand in hand during the holidays. Check out this Diwali-inspired buffet for 16 guests to light up your holiday table. The recipes include make-ahead directions, so this buffet promises to be easy on the host. It's also easy on the pocketbook. For less than $100 you can make all 10 authentic delicious dishes. If you're looking to spend less, serve fewer items that best meet your budget.
You will find eight additional recipes to enjoy this holiday season.
Or you can download the full article here.
Diwali blessings: May you and your family be bestowed with health, wealth, and prosperity!
Happy and Healthy Cooking!
Categories: Blog Articles, Recipes