Food of Uttarakhand
The beautiful state of Uttarakhand has a very simple, yet delicious cuisine. The food is nutritious as well as tasty. The primary food of Uttarakhand includes vegetables, though non-veg food is also served and savored by many.
The primary characteristics of the Uttarakhand cuisine is that milk and milk based products is sparingly used here. Coarse grain with high fibre content is very common in Uttarakhand cuisines.
Other food items which are famous are - mandua (Buck wheat) in the interior regions of Kumaun, linguda, which is grown on the borders of Tibet and Nepal. It is also a part of the Pahari cuisine as it helps to keep the stomach in order.
Generally, either pure ghee or mustard oil is used for the purpose of cooking food. Use of tomato is minimal in the cuisines of Uttarakhand. Simple recipes of this state are made interesting with the use of hash seeds as spice.
Some of the famous cuisines of Uttarakhand include the following:
Phanu is also made of dals (lentils) like chainsoo, but in this case the dals are soaked in water for about 4 to 6 hours before its use. A different variety of dals like- Gahat, Arhar or green Mung can be used to prepare Phanu.
Kafuli is a thick gravy preparation made from green leafy vegetables. Kafuli made of Spinach leaves is the most common preparation.
Thechwani can be prepared using radish root (pahari mula having round root) or potatoes. The preparation is called by this name as the radish root or potato is never cut, but crushed (thinchao) into pieces.
Chainsoo is prepared by using black gram daal. Normally due to the high protein content in this daal it is difficult to digest. However it is said that the bad effect gets nullified by roasting. Similar preparation with slight variation is made out of black bhat (a varity of soyabeen), but in that case it is called bhatwani.
In Garhwali Jhol means very thin gravy. Jhol can be made out of tomatoes, potatoes and other tubers. On the other hand Jholi is gravy made out of curd. It is comparatively a much thicker jhol and similar to phanu in preparation.
This chutney is mainly prepared during winters and is yummy with Tor ki daal n' Bhaat or with Gahat ke paranthe. It can also be used as a dip for various snacks.
During marriages and other family or religious functions certain traditional Garhwali dishes are prepared, the most important among them are Roat and Arsa,besides `urd ki pakori, pooris , kaddu ki bhujji and alu-tamatar ka jhol are the most common dishes made during these occasions and the festive seasons.
Baadi is made from Kwada ka Aata (also known as Choon or Mandua flour and is black in color) Baadi is best eaten with Gahat ki dal or Phaanu.Hot Baadi and hot Phanu is very popular food in Uttarakhand..
More Food - Bhatt ki Churdkani, Gulgula, Mandua ki roti, Thagya roti, Kuladh ki dal, Swala, PalaU, Kandali ka saag, Jhangora ki kheer.
Music and Dance of Uttarakhand
Music is an integral part of the Uttarakhand culture. the calm and serene ambiance of this place surrounded with hills and mountains has inspired many musicians to compose great tones. the scintillating glimpse of streams of rivers, lush green forests and the heavenly beauty of the hilly areas are all the natural components of the folk music over here. they mainly include the spiritual and socio-cultural scenes of the place. some of the popular folk songs are `Mandals`, `panwaras` and somber `khuded`, `thadya` and `jhoda`.these folk songs are composed on the beats and nodes of Dhol, damoun, turri, ransingha, dholki, daur, thali, bhankora and masakbhaja.
Although with the upcoming advancement in science and technology, the music in Uttarakhand has also gained a lot of changes over the years. many musical legends are associated with this place. Meena Rana who has released multiple albums in her voice is also known as "Lata Mangeshkar of Uttarakhand".langvir nritya is a dance form for males and in many ways similar to gymnastic movements.
Barada Nati folk dance is another famous dance of Dehradun, which is practiced on some religious festivals
Cholia is one of the famous folk dance of Kumaon which is as old as 1000 years. Swords are being used by dancers in this dance.
Jhodha dance is the most famous folk dance of Kumaon. People belonging to different caste or creed, perform this dance, irrespective of any discrimination, in almost all festivals.
This dance is based on the story of Mahabharata along with dance and music. this dance form is performed during Dusshera and Diwali.
This dance form mainly connected with the death ceremonies is practiced by the bhotia tribes. As per the old believes of these tribes the soulsoul of the dead person resides in the body of a goat or sheep and by dancing this way the soul can be liberated for their next birth.
Chanchi is also one of the famous folk dance of Kumaon. It takes place only in fairs. Mostly this dance is based on religious songs, something related to nature etc.
This dance is practiced in couples and the females hold a mirror in there left hand and a colourful handkerchief in the other.The male plays a Hudukka on his left shoulder accompanied by others playing the Hurka, Manjira and Flute. this duet symbolizes the romance among them.with a smile on face and elegant body movement the female counterparts admire and express their love.
In this dance form, the dancer climbs a bamboo pole and balances himself at his navel on the top of the pole. he balances, swivels and dances on his belly at the pole along with the music of the dhol and performs other acrobatic stunts.
Music of Uttarakhand
These are the folk songs popular in the Rawain - Jaunpur area of Tehri Garhwal. 'Chhopati' are the love songs sung between men and women in the form of questions and answers.
Basanti folk songs are composed for the coming spring season when flowers bloom and new life springs in the valleys of the hills of Garhwal. The folk song is sung individually or in groups.
Mangal songs are sung during marriage ceremonies. These songs are basically "Puja Songs" (hymns) sung along with the Purohits (Panditjee/priests) who keep chanting "Shlokas"(verses) in Sanskrit according to the Shastras (scriptures) during the marriage ceremony
Puja Folk Songs
These songs are connected with the Puja (worship) of family deities. There are other Puja songs connected with 'Tantra' and 'Mantras ' to exorcise evil spirits from human beings.
Jaggar falls in the category of ghost and spirit worship, in the form of a folk song or, at times, combined with dances. Sometimes, Jaggar may also be in the form of Puja folk songs and is sung in honor of the various Gods and Goddesses.
Chhura' folk songs are sung among shepherds, in the form of advice given by the old to the young, learnt from their experience, particularly about grazing sheep and goats.
This is a folk song of love and sacrifice among the shepherds. It is a love dialogue between a man and woman, or, between a boy and girl.
Laman, another folk song is sung on special occasions, expressing the sacrifice that a man is willing to undergo for his beloved.
These folk songs depict the suffering of a woman caused by separation from her husband. The women curse the circumstances under which she has been separated. This is generally when the husband is away looking for a job.