Remember the time when your brother protected you from a bully at school? Or when your brother supported you in a decision your parents didn’t? While there are still times when we just can’t tolerate the sight of our sibling, but then we would still like to save the last slice of his/her most favourite cake at a party. Isn’t that true? The bond between a brother and sister is one we simply cannot put into words, but can only feel the warmth in such bittersweet instances. 

Celebrating this bond is the festival of Raksha Bandhan, when sisters apply tilak on the foreheads of their brothers and tie rakhis around their wrists, feed them with sumptuous sweets or mithais. And in return, brothers vow to protect their sisters against all adversities besides showering them with some amazing gifts. Well, it’s that time of the year again. 

Beautiful rakhis and traditional sweets have made their way to the markets all around the country, and the festive vibe is already in the air. The festival that celebrates the bond between brothers and sisters is also laced with get-togethers with relatives and topped off with a feast of drool-worthy delicacies. If you are planning a wholesome lunch at home to celebrate the festivities with your near and dear ones, we’ve got just the perfect vegetarian lunch menu for Raksha Bandhan to help you out. 

Starters 

Chilli Paneer Dry 

Paneer is the ultimate party ingredient when it comes to the vegetarian menu. This lip-smacking chilli paneer dry is one that can kick start any party or get-together on a delicious note. A hit with kids and adults alike, this involves crispy paneer cubes marinated in a mix of corn flour and flavourful spices. This Indo-Chinese snack is sure to be a crowd-pleaser. 

Stuffed Mushroom Caps 

These are definitely nothing like you’ve had before. These mushroom caps are stuffed with a delicious mix of parmesan cheese, cream cheese, red chilli, and onion powder along with garlic, butter, and mushroom stems. Baked to perfection and topped with parmesan, these caps are a perfect way to cut through all the fried treats on the spread. 

Drinks 

Watermelon Mojito 

Make the most of watermelons before they go completely out of the season and make this super refreshing drink with mint leaves, lime, soda, and watermelon juice. This recipe uses white rum too but you can skip it out to make a non-alcoholic version. 

Aam Panna 

Just like watermelon, mangoes are also going to go away sooner than you realise. It’s time you relish your favourite khatta-meetha panna for the last time. This tantalising drink of raw mangoes sweetened with sugar and flavoured with aromatic spices like cumin seeds, spicy black pepper and tangy black salt, can pep up taste buds of anyone with its tingling taste. 

Main Course 

Dal Makhani 

Can a vegetarian spread ever be complete without the rich and creamy Punjabi delicacy? Dal makhani has made fans all over the world with its rich and luscious cream, aromatic spices which lend an unforgettable flavour. Traditionally, dal makhani is cooked in an earthen pot for hours, here’s a fool-proof recipe which is sure to make you a star. 

Kadhai Paneer 

There’s nothing better than a rich and satisfying paneer curry for main course to celebrate any festivity, isn’t it? And this quick and easy kadhai paneer recipe will do exactly that, while impressing all your guests with its melange of paneer cubes and fiery hot curry of spices, tomato and curd. When paired with rice or roti, it’s a sumptuous, aromatic affair. 

Zarda Pulao 

Picture rich dry fruits and nuts perfectly-cooked with long-grained rice and tinged with rose water and saffron, and enriched with cinnamon, cardamom, fennel, and sugar, aren’t you slurping this royal treat yet? Zarda pulao is a royal rice dish, laced with nuts and dry fruits, perfect to serve on special occasions and festivals like these. 

Dahi Bhalla 

This yoghurt-based chaat, served with sweet and spicy chutney, spongy bhallas and topped with chaat masala - is an all-time favourite for many of us. So, why not celebrate Raksha Bandhan with the classic Indian street food? 

Desserts 

Kheer 

A dessert that is loved by many and that never fails to satisfy our sweet tooth, kheer is a perfect festive dessert. A generous serving of this creamy rice and milk pudding is enough to make our sweet tooth happy. Traditionally made with rice, makhana, and sabudana or seviyan cooked in milk, nuts, and sugar. One can also experiment with a lot more including oats, apple, paneer, and pineapple.