These are the dishes people will be tucking into for spring Hindu festival Holi

20th Mar 19 | Lifestyle

It's a vibrantly colourful festival, and the food is just as exciting.

Indian sweets in a plate includes Gulab Jamun, Rasgulla, kaju katli, morichoor / Bundi Laddu, Gujiya or Karanji for diwali celebration

Holi is known as the festival of colours, as people traditionally celebrate by smearing each other with brightly coloured paint. Food is an important element too though.

The festival is technically split into two parts: March 20 this year is Holika Dahan, when bonfires are lit to signify the victory of good over evil, and Rangwali Holi takes place the next day, which is when the coloured paints come into action.

Here are some of the key dishes people will be eating to really get into the Holi celebrations…

Ras malai

Cheesecake lovers, look no further. Ras malai can be described as a cheesecake without the crust – it’s gluten-free and is generally made using soft cheese, lemon, sugar, cardamom and almonds. It’s super creamy.

Gujia

These treats are a sweet twist on the dumpling. Even though they might be deep-fried, they’re stuffed with dried fruit so you don’t have to feel too bad about enjoying them.

Gujias can be made both sweet and savoury, however on Holi, most opt for the sweet version.

Thandai

Thandai is the odd one out on our list so far, as it’s technically a drink. This thick cold beverage is made using milk, nuts and spices – including fennel, aniseed and cardamom, and often watermelon seed kernels.

Puran poli

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Ganapathi is all set to come home. Welcome him with this homemade cooked to perfection Puran Poli. It’s very easy to make and turns out delicious. Check out the step by step recipe on the blog. Here is a quick recipe for you all. Ingredients For the filling 2 cups Cooked Chana Dal 1 cup Jaggery Grated 1 tbsp Ghee 1/4 tsp Nutmeg Powder 1/2 tsp Cardamom Powder 1/2 tsp Fennel Powder Not traditional. I add it because I like the flavour. For the dough 2 cups Whole Wheat Flour 1/4 tsp Turmeric Powder Not traditional. I add it for that lovely colour. 1/4 tsp Salt 2 tsp Ghee Plus for frying Instructions Mix flour, turmeric powder, salt and ghee in a bowl and mix well using your finger tips. Add little water and make a soft dough. Cover and keep aside for 30 minutes. Mix cooked dal, jaggery and ghee in a pan and cook until jaggery is dissolved and mixed with dal. Simmer the heat and cook the mixture until it starts to leave the sides of the pan and is thickened nicely. Add nutmeg powder, cardamom powder and fennel powder and mix well. Remove the filling from heat and let it cool. Divide the filling into 6-8 equal parts. Divide the dough into 6-8 equal portions. Dust and roll the dough balls to make a 4-5 inch circle. Keep a filling ball in the centre of the dough circle and bring the ends together. Dust and roll again to make a 6 inch circle. Heat a griddle and transfer the Puran Poli on the griddle. Cook from both the sides until brown spots appear. Apply ghee on both the sides and press the Puran Poli using back of a ladle and fry until golden brown from both the sides. Make all the Puran Poli in the same manner. Apply some more ghee on top and serve it with Katachi Amti.

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Puran poli look similar to pancakes – it’s a type of sweet, buttery flatbread. Traditionally eaten with milk and ghee, the recipe can be adapted to your liking, and often features a sweet dal stuffing.

Pani puri

Pani puri is a common type of Indian street food. The crisp round shells start out as dough balls, which puff up when fried, and are then filled with snacky bites, like potatoes, chickpeas and chutney.

Depending on how much time you have around Holi, puri shells can be bought in, or made from scratch, and then filled with whatever you like.

Namak pare

If you want to snack on something crunchy and delicious during Holi, your best bet is to reach for namak pare. This savoury treat is made of strips of deep-fried dough, usually spiced with cumin seeds. Enjoy either on its own, or dipped into your favourite chutney.

Chana masala

This is a classic Indian dish. Key ingredient chickpeas are cooked alongside onions, tomatoes and a range of spices.

Another popular street food snack, it’s also eaten at big celebrations and is the perfect way to kick off your Holi meal.

© Press Association 2019

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