Onam Recipes – Sadhya Vibhavangal – How to Serve Onasadhya
Onam is one of the most popular regional festivals of Kerala. It is celebrated by all Keralites regardless of their caste or religion. Onam starts on the day of ‘Attam‘ nakshatram and goes on for ten days till Thiruvonam. The main specialty of Onam is Onasadya, the grand Kerala feast. All Keralites prepares Onasadya in a grand fashion irrespective of their wealth. The multi course meal is served traditionally in banana leaf.
The sadhya has steamed Kerala Matta Rice (Rosematta rice or Red parboiled rice) as the main ingredient served with many side dishes such as Olan, Pachadi, Kichadi, Thoran, Koottukari, Aviyal, Sambar, Erissery, Upperi, Pickles, Pappads etc and finally Payasams & Prathamans. This colorful arrangement of the food on the lush green banana leaves makes it even more tempting and irresistible.
Apart from preparation, the presentation or serving of ‘sadhya’ is a tradition itself. Sadhya is served in Banana leaves with the end or the narrow part of the leaf facing left. The way of eating a sadhya is another art which helps easy digestion of the heavy menu.
Here is a quick index to all the Onam Sadya Recipes in the most authentic style along with its way of presentation. Serving should start from the bottom left of the leaf with a pinch of salt. Let’s just go through what all items are filled in the leaf!
A typical Onasadhya has banana chips (Ethakka Upperi), thick jaggery-coated banana chips (Sharkkara Upperi), Pappadam and Pazham on the extreme left corner of the banana leaf.
Pickles are served right next to the chips. Pickles include Inji curry/puli inji, Naranga Achar or Kaduku Manga Achar. Vadukapuli Naranga Achar is usually made as part of an Onasadya
These are the dishes that decide whether the sadya turned out good or not! The delectable Aviyal, Thoran, Kichadi, Pachadi, spicy and flavourful Kootu Curry and mild yet delicious Olan are some of the inevitable side dishes of Onasadhya. It is said that when you are having sadya, if you taste a bit of Olan before tasting any particular dish, you would get the real flavour of that dish alone!
The choice for Thoran are many. Cabbage Thoran, Beans and Carrot Thoran, Cheera Parippu Thoran or Beetroot Thoran are those which are usually made during Onam.
Kichadi is usually made with Pavakka, Vendakka, Vellarikka etc while Pachadi is made with Ripe mango, Pineapple, Beetroot, Ethapazham etc.
Erisseri and Theeyal are usually served in Thrissur and the northern part of Kerala.
Parippu curry is the first course and always served with melted ghee. Once the dal course is over, Sambar is brought in. Then comes Kalan (pulissery) and Rasam.
Then comes the most anticipated part of sadhya – Payasam. Normally 2 varieties of Payasam are served – one that’s jaggery and coconut milk-based and one that’s milk-based.
Sadya is not over yet. Traditionally it is advised to have some rice along with Mooru after Payasam for helping digestion.
Hope you all enjoyed these Onam Recipes, Happy Cooking!
Wishing each one of you a very happy and prosperous Onam!!!
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