Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Chana Dal In Jaggery Sweet Dish (Chana Dal & Kaju Madgane/ Mangane)

Ugadi or Gudi Padwa or Sanvsaar Paadvo is an auspicious occasion for all Hindus. In my home, we refer to this day as Sanvsaar Paadvo or Yugadi. Yugadi implies = Yug (era) + Aadi (beginning) = Beginning of an era [Source - Wiki]. For us, there is huge amount of preparation for this festival day. The previous day the entire house is cleaned, prepared and decked up for the festival.

The important contraptions in the house are cleaned, tied with Paddy stalks (called as Navve Bandoochey in Konkani). This signifies the harvest which is reaped and the joy of embracing the produce and giving it, its due importance in the household. Most of the time, we used to source the Paddy stalks from the local farmers. Previous day, Mom used to incessantly sit and finish stitching the containers for Khotte, made from Jackfruit leaves and stitched together with dried curry leaves stem. Essentially, breakfast comprised of Khotte-Chutney. I recall from early morning, Mom used to slog in the kitchen, while I used to pitch in with some help here and there. Before breaking the fast, we used to treat ourselves with Bella-Bevu: Neem Leaves known as Bevu in Kannada language and Jaggery known as Bella in Kannada. Luckily, we had a Neem sapling in our house garden. Mom used to saute the Neem leaves in ghee and we all used to eat chunks of Jaggery and crunchy Neem leaves before breakfast. As much as I hated it as a kid, now I understand the religious sanctity of these rituals.

Lunch would typically comprise of Rice (Sheet), Lentils (Daalithoi), Side dish (Tendle-Bibbe Upkari), Salad (Toushey Hullal), Curry (Tendle-Bibbe Daali Aambat), Fritters (Phodi of choice - Breadfruit, Bitter Gourd, Kantola) and the final icing on the cake - sweet dish or dessert - Madgane which is Chana Daal cooked with Jaggery and Cashew nuts. The entire day diet is observed with No Garlic and Onion rule.

Apart from all the regular Yugadi dishes, I made Madgane because its a traditional sweet dish which we make at home on the occasion of Yugadi. In Goa, this dish is known as Mangane. This was my sweet little way to connect to our traditions in a far away land. These are little things which connect you to your roots, keep you more grounded, in sync with your past. Needless to say, we enjoyed the festival food.

On a separate note, my first ever guest post made an appearance on Deepa's food site: www.foodlyrics.com

You can check my guest post on a Konkani recipe on: South Canara GSB Konkani ~ A Daily Vegeterian Meal. Click here for the essay which explores the nuts and bolts of a daily vegeterian meal followed by a recipe on Raw Jackfruit Fry - Kadgee Phodi. Thanks Deepa for giving me an opportunity to write on an essay on a cuisine which is so dear to me and my family. I really appreciate the gesture of goodwill. What better way than have lots of Food loving individuals bonding over a healthy chatter of food, produce, spices and stories related to food.

Happy Gudi Padva/ Yugadi to all!!

Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
Yield: 6 servings

Chana Daal or Split Dalia - 1 1/2 cups
Jaggery (molten or broken into pieces) - 1 cup
Cardamom powder - 6-8 pods
Rice flour - 2 tablespoon
Coconut thick milk - 1 cup
Grated coconut - 1 cup
Coconut thin milk - 1 cup
Water - as per consistency

Grind grated coconut with water and extract coconut milk. The first extract is thick and known as thick milk, the second and third extracts are thin milk. Set aside.
Soak Chana Dal and Cashew nuts in water overnight for 8-10 hours. Next day pressure cook them for 4-5 whistles. In a deep dish pan, cook Chana Daal with Jaggery. Once jaggery melts completely and the mixture is an even consistency, add the thin milk and stir gently. Take care to ensure the mixture does not stick the bottom of saucepan.
Bring to boil, and add thick coconut milk towards the end. Adjust the taste and consistency of water as per requirement. Bring to a complete boil, check if cooked and turn off the flame. Garnish with lot of cardamom powder. It enables in balancing the sweet texture of jaggery with a little spicy flavour. Serve hot or chilled as per choice.


  1. Happy Yugadi to you and yours dear Ashwini. The lunch menu is delecatable. Since DH is sick, I did not make anything yesterday. I will cook something during the weekend.

    PS: I am in awe of the traditional Konkani recipes you blog here. I have pointed to many Konkani friends about your blog. keep up the awesome work.

  2. Hi Supriya,

    Thanks for the warm wishes. Happy Yugadi to you and our family as well. I managed to put up a humble fare :)

    Thanks for the lovely words of encouragement, it really means a lot to me. Glad you like my little foodie abode.

  3. Luv the Madgane dear. I culdn't make much on Ugadi. But my 83 year old annama had all the vigour and strength to cook us Gajabaje AMbat, Kothimbari Palle Chutney, Puri, Dalitoy, and sheeet. We had Shrikhand and Ubbati from outside.

  4. Belated Ugadi wishes to you too!
    Chana dal in jaggery looks very rich and perfect for ugadi celebrations!

  5. @ Supriya Nair,
    Thanks. You are a lucky woman! I wish someone could cook a fare for me here. :)
    Glad you relished the mighty fare. Yugadi lunches are always special, much better if there's a mom's or grandmom's touch to it. I love all of the dishes you mentioned. Ubbati or Pooran Poli is my favorite :)))

    @ Parita,
    Thanks for the warm festive wishes. For us, Madgane is a default Konkani dessert for Yugadi :)

  6. Hi Ashwini,
    came here after reading your guest post.. what a coincidence!.. even I posted Madgane as my Gudi Padwa post..


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