Durga Puja, a ten day festival is celebrated with great religious observance. The festival is marked with a number of rituals that are followed since time immortal. Dedicated to the worship of female divinity Ma Durga who is known to have killed mighty demon king Mahishasura, Durga Puja is the festival of victory of good against evil. The celebration is a grand affair in West Bengal state of India and several other states including Tripura, Assam and Orissa. Bengalis from all over the country adorn themselves with new clothes, accessories and indulge in feasting, which is a delight of Durga Puja. They eat myriad of dishes that are indigenous to their culture. Though Bengalis are known for their sweet tooth, their cuisines consist of varieties of spicy dishes. These dishes are the specilities of any festive season. Bengalis take most pride to treat their guest with festive special delicacies such as Chola dal, Bandhakopir Dalna, Aloo Posto, Khichri, Labra, Payesh, Misti Doi and mouth watering Roshogulla, one of the popular sweet dish of Bengal. Some of the popular Bengali festive dishes are listed below which can be enjoyed ay any time of the year.
Aloo Posto is one of the popular Bengali recipes. It is a delicious side that goes perfectly well with rice and dal. The dish is prepared with potato and poppy seeds. Aloo posto easily fits into Durga Puja Navami Bhog and liked by all.
Chola dal is one of the perfect accompaniments for rice. It is prepared with Bengal gram dal. Chola dal when cooked with cloves, cinnamon sticks and turmeric powder gives a very good aroma and deserves to be included in all festive special delicacies.
Labra is a tasty and mouth watering dish of West Bengal. It is a mix of vegetable recipe accompanied by curry. It contains several kinds of vegetables cooked with light spices thus ensuring a high nutrition value. It is served popularly with Khichri during Durga Puja and forms a part of Navami Bhog (feast). The dish is easy to prepare and very fulfilling.
Also known as ‘Namak Pare’, Nimki are traditional north Indian snacks. Prepared with white flour, these are very tasty and light crunchy snacks that can be prepared easily. Nimkis are one of the popular Durga puja delicacies as Bengalis love to treat their guest with these light sacks during and after the puja.
‘Bandhakopir Dalna’, popularly referred to as ‘bengali cabbage curry’ is another perfect accompaniment with Khichri and served with puja bhog. Cabbage is the chief ingredient and when prepared with potatoes, cumin and coriander it gives a perfect aroma that sets the mood of the feast.
Bengalis have an inclination for sweets and West Bengal is famous for some of the specialty sweets of the region. One of the popular Bengali sweets is Mishti Doi. Prepared with cream milk and sugar it’s a mouthwatering desert perfect for any festival or occasion. This sweet delicacy takes a little time and patience to prepare.
Roshogolla is something for which West Bengal is renowned of. Prepared with Chenna (cottage cheese) and some sweet flavors Roshogolla is an inseparable part of Bengal celebration.
Patishapta Pitha, doodh puli, Puli pitha are varieties of pitha that are very popular in West Bengal. Patishapta is a sweet dish with its outer layer made of flour and stuffed with a filling of coconut and jaggery. It is the most common sweet prepared on festivals like Durga Puja, Makar Sankranti and Diwali.