Chaitra Navratri 2023: Paneer Sabzi, Kuttu Roti; A Sattvik Boost
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Navratri is a Hindu festival that is observed at least twice a year, especially during the two main season changes. While the Chaitra Navratri announces the coming of summer, Sharad Navratri announces that winter is coming. In 2023, Chaitra Navratri begins on March 22 and ends on March 30, which is also celebrated as Ram Navami. 

A key part of Navratri is fasting. Most people, especially in North and West India, tend to keep a ritual fast during the nine days of Navratri. For many, this is the time to naturally detoxify the body and eat only sattvik foods as opposed to tamasic or rajasic ones. So, Navratri is also the period when the diet changes drastically into a Phalahari one. Not only are onions, garlic and aggressive spices like red chilli powder and garam masala avoided, but so are grains like rice and wheat.  

Since Navratri calls for a sattvik menu that is also nutritious, it is very important that these meals—whether you have them once a day or more—are carefully cooked. If you are keeping the Navratri fast, then here’s a complete meal suggestion for you. This Phalahari Paneer Sabzi packs a lot of sattvik proteins not only through the paneer but also through the cashews. Paired with this simple yet delicious sabzi are Kuttu Rotis. Made of buckwheat flour and potatoes, these Kuttu Rotis are all you need to scoop up the Phalahari Paneer Sabzi. 

Image courtesy: Facebook/Rj Payal

Here’s the recipe for Phalahari Paneer Sabzi. 


200 g paneer, cubed 

2 tomatoes, cubed 

8-10 cashews 

1 tsp cumin seeds 

1 tbsp ginger, grated 

2-3 green chillies, chopped 

½ tsp black pepper powder 

½ tsp cumin powder 

Sendha namak or rock salt, to taste 

2 tbsp fresh cream 

2 tbsp coriander leaves, to garnish 

2 tbsp ghee 


1. Heat a tablespoon of ghee in a pan.  

2. Add the ginger and green chillies.  

3. Once these stop spluttering, add the cashews, salt and tomatoes.  

4. Cook them until the latter is soft, let the mix cool, then grind into a fine paste. 

5. Heat the remaining ghee in a pan, then add cumin seeds. 

6. Once the cumin seeds stop spluttering, add the paneer and saute. 

7. Add the black pepper, cumin powder and salt. 

8. Mix well and fry the paneer until it turns slightly golden. 

9. Pour in the tomato-cashew mix and continue cooking until the sabzi is ready. 

10. Add the fresh cream, coriander leaves, mix well and serve hot. 

Image courtesy: Facebook/Sheela Luhar

Here’s the recipe for the Kuttu Rotis. 


2 cups buckwheat flour or kuttu ka atta 

1 potato, boiled 

½ tsp rock salt or sendha namak 

Warm water, as required 

Ghee, as required 


1. Place the buckwheat flour in a large bowl. 

2. Grate the potato and mix well. 

3. Add the salt and a teaspoon of ghee and mix again. 

4. Now, gradually add water to make a soft dough. 

5. Cover the dough and let it rest for half an hour. 

6. Divide the dough into small, equal-sized balls. 

7. Roll each ball into a thick roti. 

8. Place each roti on a hot tawa and cook on both sides.  

9. You can add ghee while cooking or after to add more flavour to the Kuttu Rotis. 

10. Serve the Kuttu Rotis hot with Phalahari Paneer Sabzi.