Bringing Back The Forgotten Art Of Making Papdis

InBeginning in March, Holi celebrations are held in every Indian home. The celebration lets everyone engage in fun activities and greet everyone with gulal, a herbal hue. Friends and family gather to celebrate this colorful festival. At the markets, one can find different kinds of water guns, heaps of gulal, colour sprays, balloons and what not. Like any other Indian festival, Holi celebrations are incomplete without delectable food and sweets. In Indian homes you find a variety of traditional dishes, such as gujiya, malpua, dahi chaaat, pakore and more in context with this festival. 

When it comes to traditions, in India, there are small changes in terms of cooking methods, language, and more at every 10 kilometres. In spite of the fact that festivals are observed throughout India, some regions have the same customs as others, while some may have a different way of celebration, but overall, the significance of the festivals remains almost the same across the nation. In Maharashtra, puran poli may be served at Holi, whilst in Rajasthan, kanji vada is likely to be provided in most homes. Things differ as per states and also communities.  

During the festivals, several regions provide a variety of cuisines. Rajasthan is known for its lavish celebrations and enduring customs. Regardless of any tribe or community, Rajasthani homes still feature rich colours and vibrancy during festivals. In households, preparing gujia, malpua, or ghewar for Holi is a familiar sight, but Mathur households often prepare Papdis, aka papad. Mathur is a kayastha community and are renowned for their distinctive cooking methods. The food skillfully combines several gastronomic traditions into a mouthwatering mélange. The Kayasths were traditionally scribes at the courts of the Mughals monarchs, with surnames like Saxena, Srivastava, and Mathur. They are thought to be the descendants of Yama's scribe Chitragupta, the ruler of death. It was important for a Kayastha to have a good education because they were scribes' descendants. 

Among Mathur households, preparing papdi for Holi and Diwali is still a tradition. Although not everyone makes it from scratch these days, those who adhere to the stringent norms and traditions still make papads from scratch. Their holiday celebrations start on Rangpashi, an auspicious day (3-4 days before holi) when people offer gulals to God and elders of the family and seek blessings to mark the start of the festival of holi. The first official gathering of friends and family takes place on this day. The ladies prepare papdis as well as special sweets, snacks, and everything else they wish to make for the Holi celebrations. Guests are offered papdis and other delicacies when they drop by during this time. Although making papdis is a laborious work, the entire family participates, making it pleasurable. This is the essence of an Indian festival. 

Here is the recipe to make papdi at home 


Besan- 4 cup 

Urad dal – 1 cup 

Salt as per taste 

Red chili as per taste 

Ajwain 2 tsp  

Hing ½ tsp (dissolved in water) 

Ghee or oil for frying 


Get a sizable bowl. To create a dough, combine all the ingredients and gradually pour in some water. It takes skill to make its dough since you have to beat it until it is ready for usage. In fact, it is advised to beat the mixture in a mortar and pestle 100 times to achieve the desired consistency. Once the dough is the correct consistency, roll it into a long log. Cut it into pieces that are each 1 inch long. Take each chunk and place it in your fingers after rubbing little ghee or oil on them to slightly soften it. With the help of a rolling pin, roll them into very thin round discs.

 Afterward, put it on a dry plate. Continue in this manner until all the dough has been used. Leave the rolled papad in the air for a while so that it can begin to dry out the edges (this step is very important to have crispy papads, else they will come out very soft). Now preheat some oil or ghee in a kadhai and cook each papdi separately. Your papadis are prepared. Enjoy your holi the way the Mathur’s do. Happy Holi.