April 14 marks the Hindu festival of Vishu today and you cannot help but smell the amazing delicacies being prepared in the homes of your Mallu neighbors. Vishu is celebrated with great pomp by Malayalees all over the country, especially in Kerala. Several rituals are performed on this auspicious day beginning with the first sight of the Vishu kanni, an arrangement of rice, flowers, coconut, jack-fruit, etc, in the morning followed by prayers and ending with bursting of firecrackers at night. However, the most prominent part of Vishu celebrations is the delicious Kerala cuisine prepared and served on this day. Kerala is known for its lip-smacking dishes and they all come together during the auspicious Vishu festival. Families meet for the traditional sadya served on banana leaves and enjoy a great meal together. Also Read - Day After Crossing 50,000 Mark, Maharashtra Registers 2,436 New cases; Tally Stands at 52,667

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Mallu or not, you too can prepare these delicious traditional dishes at home. Here are the recipes for three traditional Vishu dishes that are not too difficult to cook:

1. Vishu kanji

Vishu Sadhya IANS 2

Vishu kanji is primarily a rice and coconut porridge. Ususally served with jack-fruit, Vishu kanji is a major delicacy in Palakkad in Kerala.

What you need:

Parboiled Rice – 1/2 cup, Long grain rice – 1/2 cup, coconut milk – 2 cups, puliavarakka or field beans – 1/4 cup , grated coconut – 1 cup

How to make Vishu kanji:

Dry roast the puliavarakka for 5 minutes. Wash and cook the long grain rice and parboiled rice separately. Then mix the two kinds of rice together and wait for the mixture to thicken. Cook the puliavarakku roast with coconut milk till you see the beans done. Add this mixture to the rice pot and cook the mixture for a couple of minutes. Then, add the grated coconut and stir. Serve hot with Avial or Papaddum.

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2. Vishu katta


Popular in Thrissur in Kerala and known all across India, Vishu katta is a rice-preparation renowned as a Vishu special!

What you need:

Brown rice – 1 cup, cocnut milk – 2 cups, cumin seeds – 1/2 tsp, ginger powder – 1/4 tsp

How to make Vishu katta:

Vishu katta is quite similar to Vishu kanji. You need thick, semi-thick and thin coconut milk for this dish which can be obtained by processing coconut with water in a food processor. Wash 1 cup of brown rice, add thin coconut milk and cook the mixture in a closed vessel till the coconut milk is used up. Then add the semi-thick coconut milk and cook the rice further on simmer flame. Once three-fourths of the rice is cooked, add the thick coconut milk with ginger powder and stir till the rice thickens. Serve with jaggery syrup.

DO SEE Vishu celebrations in Hyderabad: How Vishu is celebrated in Telangana’s capital

3. Vishu Thoran

Image: Ramesh NG/Wikimedia Commons

Image: Ramesh NG/Wikimedia Commons

Vishu Thoran is a popular cabbage dish made specially during Vishu.

 What you need:

Grated cabbage, onions, and carrot; ginger juliennes, mustard seeds, red and green chillies, turmeric powder, salt, 1 tsp oil

How to make Vishu thoran:

Heat oil in a pan, add mustard seeds, and wait till they crackle. Add ginger and green chillies and saute for a few seconds. You may also add some curry leaves. Then add the grated onion, carrot and cabbage and stir for a few minutes. Add the green chillies and turmeric powder now. Close the pan with a lid and allow it to cook for some time. Then, add the grated coconut and cook for a few more minutes. Serve hot with rice.

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