Chhath Puja 2023: 7  Foods Offered During This Festival

This year, Chhath Puja 2023 will be celebrated from November 17 to November 20 based on the tithi and muhurats. A key part of the Chhath Puja 2023 celebrations will, as always, be the offerings given to the sun god and his consort. Prasad offering is regarded as a selfless act because it is made to the god without any thought of benefiting oneself. In Hindu philosophy, this selflessness is regarded as a virtue. 

It represents devotion, innocence, parity, and the reciprocal flow of grace and love between the worshipper and the divine. Offering and receiving prasad is a deeply rooted religious and cultural tradition in Hinduism. During Chhath Puja, Prasad remains particularly valuable, and numerous offerings are made to Chhathi Maiya and the sun god. Typical prasad items consist of: 

1. Thekua: A crucial part of Chhath Puja customs is thekua. In order to receive blessings for prosperity and well-being, devotees prepare it as an offering to the sun god. The main components of Thekua are clarified butter (ghee), whole wheat flour, jaggery (sugar), and occasionally grated coconut. To make dough, these ingredients are combined. Thekua gets its rich flavour and aroma from the use of ghee, jaggery, and occasionally spices. It tastes somewhat savoury with a hint of sweetness. Thekua is offered to the sun god during Chhath Puja once it has been prepared. It is then given to family members and devotees as prasad. Thekua is traditionally prepared and consumed during the Chhath Puja season. It is a custom from culture that has been handed down through families and generations. 

2. Kaddu Bhat: On the first day of Chhath Puja devotees had to prepare this basic dish that is kaddu bhat. Here they prepare a satvik kaddu curry (pumpkin curry) and rice along with some pulses.It is served as a bhog in the afternoon. This ritual is basically known as “Nahay Khaye”, here first the devotees take bath then prepare kaddu bhat as Prasad, and they take that Prasad as meal. 

3. Pirukiya:  Quite like Gujiyas from North India, Pirukiya is a delicious sweet dumpling deep fried in ghee and offered to the gods during Chhath Puja and other festivities. These dumplings are mostly made of wheat flour and a stuffing of coconut mixed with some sugar or jaggery, and plenty of chopped nuts. What's more, Pirukiya, unlike Gujiya is not dipped in sugar syrup before serving and remains dry.

4. Lauki Dal: The term "lauki Dal" describes a lentil-based dish in which bottle gourd, or lauki, is a main ingredient. This is a filling and healthy dish that blends the subtle taste and distinct texture of bottle gourd with lentils. Add some new coriander leaves as a garnish and the lauki dal is prepared for serving. Savour it with rotis or steaming hot rice during Chhath Puja for a simple, homemade lunch. 

5. Kheer-Puri: The delicious fusion of Kheer, a rice pudding, and Puri, a deep-fried bread, is known as Kheer Puri. This dish, which combines the crispy texture of puris with the creamy sweetness of kheer, is very popular and decadent. This is offered to Chhathi Maa during Chhath Puja.

6. Chawal Ke Laddoo: Rice flour, jaggery or sugar, and ghee are the main ingredients of Rice Ladoo, also called Chawal Ke Laddoo and Kachwaniya in Bihar. This is an aromatic and sweet Indian dessert. During holidays, celebrations, and festivals, these laddoos are frequently made. Nutty, crunchy and slightly sweet, these laddoos are must-haves.

Video Credit: Youtube/ Home Style Cooking

7. Chana Sprouts:  Chickpea sprouts, sometimes referred to as chana sprouts, are a wholesome and adaptable ingredient for a variety of dishes. However, during Chhath Puja, these sprouts are offered to the gods as they are because they are not only nutritious and perfect for winters, but also sattvik in nature and pure as a Prasad. After offering it to the gods, Chana sprouts are enjoyed as a quick snack too.

8. Ganna:    Sugarcane is harvested in the winter months, which makes ganna the perfect seasonal offering to the gods. Sweet, juicy and cut into large chunks, ganna is the perfect offering for Chhath Puja. It’s a gesture of thanking Chatti Maa for her abundant blessings thanks to which fresh harvests are received every year.