Onam is an ancient festival celebrated in the month of ‘Chingam’. It is the annual celebration of the visit of the Asura King ‘Mahabali’. The era of Mahabali was considered the golden time of Kerala.Onam is celebrated over 10 days starting from Attham. Onam celebration is complete without the Onam Sadhya.
Onam Sadhya is a feast of 26 dishes spread across a banana leaf. It is a 3-course meal consisting of a main dish, dry side dish and pickles and a dessert. The Sadya is a complete meal that has some of the healthiest dishes. All the Onam dishes have ingredients that have a number of health benefits, turning Sadya into a powerhouse of nutrients.
Making 26 can be a task and therefore we bring you a Mini-Sadhya with 3 items from a list of 26 that are easy to prepare and healthy at the same time.
If you’re a Malayali, then you know it’s one of those healthy, comfort foods you are bound to love.
- Buttermilk: 500 ml
- 4-5 small onions/pearl onion ( you can get this at any malayali store)
- Chopped ginger: 2 tsp
- Green chilli slit: 3-4
- Dry red chilli : 2
- Turmeric: 1/4 to 1/2 tsp
- Mustard: 1/4 tsp
- A pinch of Fenugreek
- Curry leaves
- Olive oil
How to prepare:
- Heat olive oil in a pan.
- Add mustard and fenugreek seeds and let it splutter.
- Add red chilli, small onions chopped, ginger, green chilli and curry leaves.
- Fry it for 1-2 minutes
- Add turmeric powder and salt as per taste. Mix well.
- Add buttermilk and stir.
- Stir this continuously, do not let it boil.
- Remove from gas, stir for a few more minutes. And that’s it you are done!
A staple in every Malayali household, this is usually made with cabbage and carrots with grated coconut.
- 1 medium sized cabbage
- 1 medium sized onion
- 10 to 12 curry leaves
- 1 tsp black mustard seeds, also called rai
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- A pinch of asafoetida
- 1 green chilli
- 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
- 1/2 cup grated coconut
- 1 or 2 tbsp coconut oil
- Salt as per taste
How to prepare:
- Rinse the cabbage and shred it.
- Heat oil in a pan.
- Add mustard seeds and saute till they crackle.
- Next add in the cumin and saute.
- Add the chopped onions, green chillies and curry leaves. Saute for about a minute or so.
- Add in the turmeric powder and asafoetida. Mix well.
- Finally, add the shredded cabbage and salt.
- Saute for a minute and then cover this on a low flame.
- Steam cook till cabbage is tender and once the mix gets a bit dry, add the coconut and stir.
- Cook this for another 2-3 mins and garnish with coriander leaves at the end.
Spiced yogurt with vegetable – okra (bhindi), bitter gourd or cucumber.
- Okra,also called Bhindi : 1/2 kg ( uniformly chopped round slices)
- Green chillies: 4-5 finely chopped
- Yogurt: 1 cup
- Oil: 3 tsp
- Salt to taste
- Mustard Seeds: 1/2 tsp
- Dry red chillies: 2
- Curry leaves: a few
How to prepare
- Wash and pat dry the okra. Cut the ends and chop into round slices.
- Heat oil in a pan, add the chopped okra. Add in the green chillies and fry on medium flame.
- When the okra turns slightly brown, toss it periodically so that it does not burn.
- Once done, keep this aside.
- In a small pan, add oil and temper it with mustard seeds, dry red chillies, and curry leaves.
- Mix this a while and then add in the cooled and cooked okra.
- Cover this mix and set it aside for 10 mins so that the flavours blend.
- Serve it with steamed brown rice.
All the above preparations go along with some brown rice and papadam ( papad).
Though all these preparations are high in terms of health and nutritional value, it is still advised to keep a track of your blood sugar levels using a glucometer.