There are numerous days we celebrate nationally and internationally to mark the significance of it, like World Sleep Day, or Sparrow Day to name a few. But how often do we read about a day assigned to the significance of a dish? Yes, you read it right– a dish. Every year, World Pakhala Dibasa is observed on March 20.
Pakhala is an eastern food recipe made from cooked rice, which is washed or fermented slightly in water. The liquid part of the dish is known as torani.
This traditional Odia dish is made of rice, curd, cucumber, cumin seeds, fried onion and mint leaves and is relished with dry roasted vegetables like brinjal, potato saga bhaja or fried fish
The festivities of the World Pakhala Divas 2021 is seen in Odisha and nearby states. People call the festival ‘Pakhala Dibasa’ or ‘Pakhala Day’ fondly.
It is said that this eastern food dish was first introduced in the recipe of Lord Jagannath Puri and is ideal to beat the summer heat and to promote the traditional dish worldwide, World Pakhala Divas is celebrated. Pakhala helps in the rejuvenation of water levels in the body and considered to be extremely healthy. The dish is served in different forms on the occasion — Dahi Pakhala, Garam Pakhala, Basi Pakhala, Jeera Pakhala etc.
The Odia community across the globe celebrates the festivity with sheer enthusiasm. Except for Assam, the festivity of World Pakhala Divas is celebrated in West Bengal, Chhattisgarh, Tamil Nadu, Jharkhand etc. The farmers religiously celebrate the day as it is a part of their staple food and is an important harvest. It is lesser-known that in Tamil Nadu, this festive occasion is popularly called ‘Pazhaiya Sadam’.
The celebration of World Pakhala Divas, apart from the cultural significance for the Odia community, is a treat for the foodies.