Ram Navami is a Hindu festival that will be celebrated on March 30 this year. It commemorates the birth of Lord Rama, one of the most revered deities in Hinduism. It falls on the ninth day of the Hindu month of Chaitra, which usually falls in March or April according to the Gregorian calendar. Ram Navami is an auspicious day for Hindus, and it is celebrated with great devotion and enthusiasm all over India. As part of the celebration, many households in North India observe the Kanjaka ceremony, which involves worshiping young girls as incarnations of the divine feminine.
The ritual involves preparing and offering Prasad (sacred food) to the Kanjakas, which usually includes black gram, puri and halwa. However, there are many other prasad items that you can add variety and flavor to your Konjac celebrations. (Also read: 5 irresistible barfi recipes to satisfy your sweet tooth this festive season )
Executive Chef Meraj at Four Points, Sheraton Navi Mumbai shares with HT Lifestyle, some of the prasad items you can make at Konjac to make the festival more special and memorable.
Prasad items to be made during Kanjak:
- Chickpea Curry
Chickpeas – 1 cup (200 grams)
Green Coriander – 1 to 2 tbsp.
Oil – 1 to 2 tbsp.
Green Chillies – 2 to 3
Ginger julienne – 1 inch
Cumin – ½ tsp
Turmeric powder – ¼ tsp
Coriander powder – 1 tsp
Mango powder – ¼ tsp
Red Chilli Powder – ¼ tsp
Garam Masala – ¼ tsp
Salt – 1 tsp
1. Take a cup of soaked black gram, wash it and soak it overnight or for 7 to 8 hours. Soak it and add one spoon of salt and one cup of water to the cooker.
2. Mix it and close the cooker lid.
3. Cook it on medium flame till the first whistle.
4. After the first whistle lower the flame and cook it on low flame for 3 to 4 minutes. After 4 minutes switch off the flame and wait till the cooker pressure is released.
5. Preheat a pan, add 1 to 2 tbsp of oil and heat it. Add half a teaspoon of cumin seeds to it and reduce the flame.
6. Add 4 finely and vertically chopped green chillies to it. Roast the masala and add a teaspoon of coriander powder to it.
7. Add half a teaspoon of turmeric powder to it and cook the spices. Add the cooked chickpeas along with the water in the cooker.
8. Add ¼ tsp red chilli powder, ¼ tsp garam masala, ¼ tsp mango powder to it and make the flame high.
9. Cook it for 2 minutes and after 2 minutes add some coriander leaves.
10. Switch off the flame and mix it. Black gram curry is cooked and ready to serve.
2. Semolina Pudding (Halwa)
Semolina – half a cup (100 grams)
Ghee – ¼ cup
Sugar – ½ cup (125 grams)
Cardamom powder – ½ tsp
Cashews (chopped) – 1 tbsp
Almond flakes – 1 tbsp
Raisins – 1 tbsp
1. Preheat a pan, add 3 to 4 tbsp of clarified butter. Melt it and add half a cup of semolina to it.
2. Fry it on medium flame stirring continuously until it turns brown in color.
3. Chop cashews, almonds and roast them along with semolina. Add some raisins and 1.5 cups of water.
4. Add half a cup of sugar to it and cook it on low flame till the semolina turns soft.
4. The semolina has expanded after 5 minutes. Stir it again and cook until it reaches a thick consistency.
5. The halwa has thickened and cooked. Add some cardamom powder to it and mix. Pour it into a separate bowl and serve.
Wheat flour – 2 cups (300 grams)
Salt – ½ tsp
1. Take 2 cups of wheat flour in a bowl, add half a teaspoon of salt to it. Add a teaspoon of oil to it and knead a stiff dough using water at intervals.
2. After kneading the dough, cover and keep it aside to set for 20 minutes.
3. After 20 minutes the dough has set, mash it. Heat the oil beforehand to fry the puri, divide the dough into small sized lumps.
4. Take a lump of dough and flatten it to a diameter of 3 to 5 inches. Flatten it from the corner.
5. Do not flatten it thin from the center and thick from the corners.
6. The flame should be high while frying the puri. Add the puri to the batter and press it lightly when it starts to float.
7. Fry the puri until golden brown on both sides.
8. Flip it over and fry it till it turns brown. It is cooked because it looks golden to us. Fry all the puris in the same way.
9. The entire offer is ready to serve.
4. Rice pudding
(Recipe by Chef Sanjeev Kapoor)
Basmati rice 1/2 cup
Milk 1 liter
Sugar 3/4 cup
Green cardamom powder 1/4 tsp
Kesar (Saffron) 5-6
A silver wark to garnish
1. Soak the rice in a cup of water for fifteen minutes.
2. Drain, remove to an absorbent paper and dry using a muslin cloth. Grind it into a coarse powder.
3. Blanch the almonds and pistachios in a cup of hot water for five minutes. Drain, peel and cut into slivers.
4. Soak the raisins in a quarter cup of water for ten to fifteen minutes, drain.
5. Heat milk in a heavy bottomed pan and bring it to a boil.
6. Add rice powder and sugar and cook on low heat until the rice is reduced to half.
7. Add green cardamom powder, saffron, nuts and allow rice to cook and cook on low heat until mixture thickens, remove from heat, let cool slightly, stir in raisins and transfer to a small clay bowl.
8. Garnish with silver varak and serve chilled.
5. potato vegetable
(Recipe by Chef Sanjeev Kapoor)
2 medium potatoes (potatoes), peeled and cut into cubes
1 tablespoon of oil
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
A pinch of asafoetida
5-7 curry leaves
1 medium tomato, chopped
Salt to taste
1 tsp red chili powder
½ teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon coriander powder
1 teaspoon cumin powder
1 tablespoon chopped fresh coriander leaves
1 teaspoon garam masala powder
1. Heat oil in a pressure cooker. Add mustard seeds and let it splutter. Add cumin seeds, asafoetida and curry leaves, mix and cook for 30 seconds.
2. Add tomatoes and salt, mix and cook till tomatoes are done. Add chilli powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder and cumin powder and mix well.
3. Add potatoes and chopped coriander and mix well. Add 1 cup of water, mix, cover and cook for 3-4 whistles.
4. Add garam masala powder and mix well.
5. Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot.