Bhuni Khichadi is a dish that is cooked on Makar Sankranti in most of northern India. From as long as I remember, bhuni khichadi and Chawal ki kheer are two staple dishes Mom used to make for the breakfast on the day of makar Sankranti which falls on next day to lohri.
Bhuni Khichadi is a dish that is cooked on Makar Sankranti in most of northern India. From as long as I remember, bhuni khichadi and Chawal ki kheer are two staple dishes Mom used to make for the breakfast on the day of makar Sankranti.
Makar Sankranti falls on next day of a very popular festival of Lohri (a Punjabi festival), which is celebrated on 13 January every year. Another prominent memory of makar Sankranti is lots of colorful kites in the sky against the blue sky, a colorful sight to behold.
According to Hindu calendar, Makar Sankranti marks the start of the new year. People also celebrate the festival to welcome the harvest of winter crops in home. In Punjab, this is almost two days festival first day is Lohri and second day being Makar Sankranti. Traditionally, this is harvest festival, so grains and fresh produce is the focal point of makar sankranti food in most of the India. Read my article Various food traditions on day of makar Sankranti on The Urban Spice.
Sarson Ka saag and Makki Ki roti was a staple on Lohri day lunch. In the evening there used to be lots of delicious Indian food, which was enjoyed after community bone fire. We kids used to worship Fire God and ate moongphali ( roasted peanuts) rewdi ( sugar candy encrusted with sesame seeds ) and popcorn after putting some of the share in the bonfire, which later I learned that was gesture of offering the produce to God after harvesting.
Why only sesame seeds, jaggery and corn I don’t really know. But do you really care when you have so many winter goodies like gajak, tilkut etc to enjoy 🙂
Coming back to bhuni khichadi, this is made differently from the normal khichadi which is more liquid ( gruel ) in texture and mushy. This is more like a pulao where grains stand separate and whole spices are used.
Khichadi tastes best with some traditional accompaniments like curd, pickle and papad which makes this simple dish to a whole new level and makes it more festive. Drizzle some homemade ghee over bhuni khichadi and this makar sankranti enjoy the irresistible taste of simple fare which tastes absolutely delicious!