A Treat Beyond Imagination

Celebrate Holi with bhang and thandai…..

Posted by Deepak Shetty on March 9, 2009

holiHoli (Rang Panchami) the festival of colour is celebrated all over the country with great festivity and joy. On this day, people come out wearing pure white clothes and gather together in a common place where they play with colors. Every state in India has its own way of celebrating holi, but one thing which has become common and part of holi is bhang and thandai .

Bhang is described as a beneficial herb that “releases anxiety”.Bhang preparations were sacred to Gods, particularly Shiva. One of Shiva’s epithets was “Lord of Bhang” as he is said to have discovered the transcendental properties of the mixture.

Whereas Thandai is embedded with the tradition of Holi as a refreshing and healthful drink. A glass of Thandai offers instant energy and sets the mood for playing with color. Infact, bhang thandai is used as a mood setter for the festival of Holi. And to set my mood on holi I do try to grab a glass of bhang thandai . If u planning to have a glass of bhang thandai heres the preparation for you which we normally follow :

1 1/2 litres water
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup milk
1 tbsp. almonds
1 tbsp. watermelon seeds peeled (commercially available)
1/2 tbsp. khuskhus (poppy seeds)
1/2 tbsp. saunf (aniseed)
1/2 tsp. cardamom powder or 15 whole pods
1/2 tsp. rose water (optional)
1 tsp. peppercorns whole
1/4 cup dried or fresh rose petals (gulkand variety)

•    Soak sugar in 1/2 litre of the water used.
•    Wash clean all other dry ingredients.
•    Soak in 2 cups of remaining water.
•    Allow all soaked items to stand for at least 2 hours.
•    Grind all soaked ingredients to a very fine paste.
•    Mix remaining water to the paste.
•    Place a strong muslin strainer over a large deep vessel and press through muslin with back of hands to extract the liquid into the vessel.
•    Add milk, sugar and rosewater to the extracted liquid.
•    Chill for a hour or two before serving.

Thandai Recipes:

250 gms sweetened condensed milk
1 1/2 litre milk10 almonds, soaked in water and peeled6 pepper corns
4 cardamoms, crushed
2 tsp fennel seeds (saunf)
1 tsp khus essence (poppy seeds)
Few ice cubes, crushed

Grind well the peeled almonds, cardamom and fennel seeds to a fine paste and mix with the rest of the ingredients. Strain the mixture well.
Take crushed ice cubes in a glass till half and fill the rest with the above mixture.
Serve garnished with rose petals.
Makes for 12 glasses
Preparation time: 5-10 minutes

Yes don’t drink too much of bhang it may even spoil your celebration of holi , a glass or two I would suggest. Have a Safe and Happy Holi

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