Basant Panchami (as we call it), is predominantly the day love for kites. Sky full of colorful kites, small and big and my favorite with a tail. Oh! How much I loved that tailed kite flying carelessly with a long tail made out of paper streamers. This is the only day when everybody are on rooftops before sunrise with all the energy and zest. The significance of the day lies in the worship of Goddess Saraswati, symbol of wisdom, knowledge and also the onset of spring season.
The color yellow plays an important role in Vasant Panchami as it is related to the bloom of mustard flowers during this period. Sweet saffron rice and yellow sweets are
more popular and relished on this day.
- 1 cup Basmati Rice
- 3 tbsp Ghee
- 1/2 cup Sugar (little more or less, suitable to your taste buds)
- 1″ piece of Dalchini (Cinnamon Stick )
- 2 tbsp Milk
- 1/4 tsp Kesar (Saffron )
- 4 whole Laung (Cloves)
- 1/2 tsp Coarsely Crushed Elaichi (Cardamom Seeds)
- Pinch of Salt
- 3 tbsp sliced Pistachios and Almonds
- 2 tbsp Grated Coconut
- 1 Badi Elaichi (Black Cardamom)
- Fry almonds, pistachios and coconut in a little bit of ghee on medium heat until nuts slightly change color. Set aside.
- Put the rice, water, cinnamom stick, cloves, badi elaichi and salt in a sauce pan over medium low heat.
- Let the rice cook for about 15 minutes, or until the water has evaporated and the rice is almost done.
- While rice is cooking, in a separate pan combine milk, ghee, sugar, saffron, cardamom pd and bring to boil on medium heat, stir until the sugar has dissolved. Remove from the heat and set aside.
- Add the nuts mixture and sugar syrup over the rice. Fold gently into the rice with a spoon (I simply use my hands) gently to avoid mashing the rice.
- Let the rice simmer for more 3 to 4 minutes. Turn the heat off and leave it covered for another few minutes.
- Garnished with dry fruits of your choice.