ANDHRA PRADESH

Essence of life…

Sweet, sour, hot, bitter, salty and pungent… well, this is the way we symbolize our experiences in life! So is this unique tradition of relishing a delicacy to mark the festival of Ugadi, the very first festival in a Telugu calendar (rather, a festival which actually marks the beginning of a new calendar!)

‘Ugadi Pacchadi’we fondly say and prepare it as an offering to the god, for family and friends. “Shed Ruchulu”or the six tastes of life,’ said our elders who taught us to uphold consistency in life by pursuing the vast and fabled heritage, the impact of performance, ritual and celebration of life in general. Interestingly, Ugadi Pacchadiwith a blend of different tastes symbolizes this universal aspect of life which envelops our joys, sorrows, hopes, celebrations and the very spirit of existence and aptly integrated in this festival, which denotes the beginning of yet another time cycle to proceed ahead with mixed experiences of life. Strength to face sufferings, spirit to be able to celebrate and compassion to be in this world, a recipe of life indeed, and we create a metaphor to the same by this simpleformula of Ugadi Pacchadi– a juice of ripe tamarind mixed with a pulp of fresh jaggery, finely chopped raw mangoes, Coconut, slices of bananas, seeds of pomegranates, grapes, a pinch of salt and chilli powder, and last but not the least those bitter flowers of Neem. It tastes bitter yet divine, so is life blessed with experiences of pain and pleasure. Such a philosophical recipe indeed!!

PS (Bhairava)