Maha Shivaratri 2023: Break Your Fast With These Festive Dishes
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Shivaratri will be observed on February 18 this year. Also known as Maha Shivaratri or 'the great night of Shiva’ is a Hindu festival to honour Lord Shiva. Devotees perform several rituals on this day to please Lord Shiva, including worshipping him and observing a strict fast.

The significance of Maha Shivaratri is rooted in Hindu mythology and is associated with several legends. One of them believes that Lord Shiva saved the world from darkness by drinking the poisonous elixir that was produced when the ocean was churned by gods and devils. Thus, the day is celebrated to honour Lord Shiva’s victory over evil.

Other legends say that the day signifies the story of the union of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati. It is believed that on this day Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati were married, and their union shows the union of ‘jivatma’, or the individual self, with ‘paramatma’ or the universal self.

On Maha Shivaratri, it is believed that people perform rituals to please Lord Shiva. One of the ways is fasting. The fast involves the exclusion of food and water for a specific period of time. Also, fasting helps cleanse the body and mind. It requires devotees to consume healthy and nutritious food when they break their fast. At the end of a fast, a variety of delectable dishes provide energy for the body. Here are some of the ones you can try on Shivaratri.

1. Sago Potato Rolls:

This is a twist on the traditional sabudana vada. Sago or sabudana potato rolls are much more crunchy and take less time to make. Sago is high in carbohydrates and is traditionally served for breakfast during Mahashivaratri. Rolled plain flour and sago hold a soft stuffing of cooked and spiced potatoes. The dish can be served with green chutney.

2. Vrat Ki Kadhi:

Vrat ki kadhi is cooked using chestnut flour, yogurt, ginger, curry leaves, coriander leaves, and some of the few common spices that are eaten after breaking the fast. This kadhi goes well with dishes like Sama Pulao, Kuttu Ki Khichdi, Sama Khichdi, plain rice, Rajgira paratha, Kuttu ka paratha, or Rajgira poori.

3. Sabudana Laddoo:

Sabudanaladdoo is a mild, tasty sweet made from blending sago and shaping it into balls by infusing ghee. This is a perfect dish for Maha Shivaratri fasting. SabudanaLaddoo or Sago Laddoo is a dessert that is given flavour by adding cardamom powder. It can be made tastier by adding nuts and dry fruits.

4. Rajgira Aur Kele Ki Poori:

After breaking the fast on Maha Shivaratri, innovative and delicious dishes can be made. Instead of having regular pooris, one can have "Rajgira aur kele ki poori," which is a puffy flatbread made from amaranth and banana. It is very good for your health and is prepared by mixing rajgira and bananas with ginger and green chilli paste and kneading them into a dough. After kneading, they are made into balls by taking small portions and rolling them into flatbreads and frying them in ghee or oil.

5. Sweet Potato Kheer:

It is an interesting combination of sweet potatoes and milk. This dish can be relished after breaking fast. It can be served as a dessert after lunch or dinner. This is an unusual dish, different from the regular sabudana kheer or rice kheer.

6. Vrat Wale Aloo:

This is a simple dish that is made without onion or garlic. The sabzi is simple and delicious, and it goes well with fasting flatbreads like kuttu ki paratha, kuttu ki poori, or rajgira paratha. The boiled potatoes are crumbled and added to the sautéed tomatoes and spice mixture. After it has been cooked for some minutes, it is served with coriander leaves.

7. Kuttu Ke Atta Ki Poori:

Kuttu, or buckwheat, is eaten during fasting days. Kuttu ke Atta ki poori is eaten after breaking the fast on Shivaratri. Kuttu is kneaded with potatoes so that it can be easily rolled out into flatbreads. Kuttu ke Atta ki poori is also delicious with yoghurt, phalaharilauki, or dehike aloo.