Announcing JFI – Nov’08 – Festival Treats!

Festivals are always a season to enjoy and remember the joyful time we had and we recreate the same for our children. I don't know if every parent goes through the same feeling or not, but for me atleast, come each festival and I am overjoyed to remember all those lovely days I spent welcoming a festival during my childhood. I can still remember Amma slogging to prepare elaborate festival treats and how I would've spent days enjoying those sweets and savories. And I try to recreate the same magic each festival had for us as kids, for mine. The month of October usually sees the fun and fare, for welcoming Dasara and Deepavali.

Dasara or Navaratri

The Festival of Dasara is celebrated on the occasion of Navaratri, and the holy day also commemorates the triumph of good over evil. Forms of celebrations can take on a wide variety of manifestations, ranging from worshipping the goddess Chamundeshwari (Durga) to exhibiting colorful toys on the day in most parts of South India.

There is a legend related to the exhibition of toys that is known as Golu (spelled Kolu in some regions). Since the goddess Durga needed tremendous power, all other gods and goddesses transferred their power to Goddess Durga and they all stood still as toys. To respect the self-sacrifice of these deities during the festival days, Hindus revere toys that are in shape of particular gods and goddesses.

The same festival is celebrated for different cause in different parts of India. In Southern India, Eastern India and Western India, the festival of Navaratri which culminates with Vijayadashami commemorates the legend in which the Goddess Durga, also known as Chamundeshwari or Mahishasura Mardini, vanquishes the demon Mahishasura, an event that is said to have taken place in the vicinity of the present day city of Mysore in Karnataka.

In Northern India, the same 10-day festival commemorates the victory of Rama, prince of Ayodhya in present-day Uttar Pradesh, over Ravana, the ruler of Lanka, who according to the Ramayana had abducted Sita Devi, the wife of the former, and held her captive in his realm.

Whatever the reason or the cause, its a great time to celebrate. And what's celebrations without food. In our parts of the woods, the kolu is always a time to make yummy treats for guests who drop in to see the Kolus. And in general, many sweets and savories are prepared.

Diwali, or Deepavali

is a major Indian festival, which is celebrated across the globe as the "Festival of Light," where the lights or lamps signify victory of good over the evil within every human being. The festival marks the victory of good over evil, and uplifting of spiritual darkness. Symbolically it marks the homecoming of goodwill and faith after an absence, as suggested by the story of Ramayana. On the day of Diwali, many wear new clothes and share sweets and snacks. Some North Indian business communities start their financial year on Diwali and new account books are opened on this day.

In South India its believed to celebrated for Killing of Narakasura. It is celebrated as Naraka Chaturdasi, two days before Diwali day, it commemorates the killing of Narakasura, an evil demon who created havoc, by Lord Krishna's wife Satyabhama. This happened in the Dwapar Yuga during this time of Lord Krishna's avatar. In another version, the demon was killed by Lord Krishna (Lord Krishna provokes his wife Satyabhama to kill Narakasura by pretending to be injured by the demon. Narakasura can only be killed by his mother, Satyabhama) himself. Before Narakasura's death, he requested a boon from his mother, Satyabhama (believed to be an Avatar of Bhudevi - Narakasura' mother), that everyone should celebrate his death with colorful light.

Deepavali is time to rejoice with friends and relatives Prepare grand feasts, along with sweets and savories. You can check out our last year Deepavali celebrations we had home..

Having said all about Dasara and Deepavali, its a pleasure to say that it's a Jihva tradition to celebrate Dasara/Diwali festival treats for Jihva November for the past two years. And its a honour to continue this tradition at my blog this year! Indira, who authors the accolade blog Mahanandi, is the creator of this event. Each month this event is guest hosted by bloggers, who choose a natural ingredient and other bloggers enthusiastically respond to it.. This month its celebrating food and festivals.

Photo Credits : Dasara pictures and Diwali.

I take this opportunity, to invite you all to join me in rediscovering the festival seasons and share with us, your way of celebrating these wonderful time

Here are the guidelines for your participation:

1. Prepare your festival treats for Dasara or Deepavali/ Diwali, it can be any cuisine, any course, Sweets or Savories, everything is accepted. If you would like to share information about the way you celebrate the festivals, you can, I would gladly include the article in the roundup.

2. Post the recipe/article in your blog between now and 31st Oct ’08. Provide a link back to this announcement.

3. Send a mail with JFI – Festivals (mention the festival name) in the subject line to with the following details.
* Your name
* Your blog name
* Name of the entry
* URL of your post
* An optional photo

4. If you don’t have a blog but would like to participate, send an email with your name, recipe and an optional photo. I will include in the roundup.

5. Older posts are accepted if they are re-posted with a link to this announcement.

6. Feel free to use the logo in your post.

I have been looking forward to host this event for a long time now. Infact one day, I forgot that it was decided to be the festival treats and spent a sleepless night planning on which ingredient to choose. Only to realize my theme and I was so very glad that I will get to see so many wonderful entries.

Indira, thank you for giving me this opportunity. You still have time till 30th Sep, to send in your entries for the Whole Grains, to Suganya who is hosting JFI this month. I just hurried up with my announcement, as I am off for a weekend trip.

Catch you all with yummy festival treats!