Each state celebrates the arrival of the harvest festival in their own special way. Gujarat celebrates Makar Sankranti, Lohri is popular in Punjab and Pongal is a multi-day Hindu harvest festival that takes place in South India, particularly in the Tamil community. All these festivals may be celebrated differently, but they have one thing in common, delicious food! Check out these special dishes available in major cities across the country.
Bombay Sweet Shop
This Makar Sankranti, Bombay Sweet Shop is re-imagining the traditional til gud laddoos (sesame-jaggery laddoos). Two layers of dark chocolate have been sandwiched between jaggery, coated with white and black sesame, murmura as well as sea salt. Try their Super Crunch Chikki which contains deliciously roasted peanut, cashew and almond, toasted poppy, black and white sesame, melon seeds, puffed amaranth, and rose petals that are stirred into sticky jaggery. The third Makar Sankranti treat is inspired by the Rajasthani dessert of Ghevar, which has been given a fruity twist. Ghevar Strawberry Tart comes with creamy pista rabri, topped with luscious seasonal strawberries.
Available from January 14-16
Order online at www.bombaysweetshop.com
JW Marriott, Juhu
JW Marriott Juhu brings in the harvest season with freshly made Punjabi chole served with tawa kulcha and achaar, a classic Sarson Ka Saag and Makke Di Roti combination, Chaunka Vegetables with Kalonji, Khumani Ka Kofta (apricot dumplings in rich Mughlai gravy), Tawa Paneer Khatta Pyaaz, Dal-E-Saffron, Murgh Tikka Masala, Alleppey Fish Curry and Dhaba Gosht. Sweet desserts on the menu include Moong Dal Halwa, Kesar Rasmalai and the evergreen Gulab Jamun.
Available from January 13-16
Call +91 22 6693 3344 or +91 90046 16506 to order
St. Regis Mumbai
St. Regis curates a flavourful feast of South Indian delicacies in their Pongal box. Vegetarians can feast on a set-menu which includes Paruppu Vadai (deep fried fritter made from chana dal and spices), Baby Corn Bezule (fried Manglorean snack), Ennai Kathirikai Kazhambu (Tamilian gravy-based dish) and Thengai Sadam (coconut rice). The non-vegetarian box consists of dishes like Kozhi (chicken) Ghee Roast, Meen Kozhambu (Tamilian fish curry), Yera Varuval (prawn fry) delivered by Marriott Bonvoy on Wheels. Indulge in your sweet tooth with Chakkara Pongal (rice, moong lentils, ghee, jaggery or sugar, cardamom and nut dessert) and Elaneer Payasam (tender coconut kheer).
Available from January 14-17
Call +91 8657522956 or 022 61628422 / 022 61628000 to place an order
Tanjore Tiffin Room, Bandra and Versova
Media producer by profession but foodie at heart, Preetha Iyer is bringing the taste of Pongal to Tanjore Tiffin Room. Through her Tambrahm Addukula (Kitchen in Malayalam), Preetha recreates the food from her grandmother’s kitchen.
Available from January 14, 15 and 16
Call +91 9820050591 (TTR Versova) or +91 7303021212 (TTR Bandra)
Head Chef Mahavir Singh and guest chef Sweety Singh have curated a special menu for Lohri at Dhaba by The Claridges Hotel. Authentic recipes such as Sarson Wale Jhinge (Mustard seed and hung curd marinated prawns cooked in clay oven), Pindi Choley, Shahi Maa di Dal Makhani, Peshwari Meat Tari Wala and Nali Saag Meat feature in their menu. Vegetarians can delight in Tandoori Soya Chaap, Chatpata Paneer Tikka, Tandoori Malai Broccoli, Tandoori Bharwan Khumb, Mushroom Takatak paired with Makki Di Roti, Missi Roti, and Lahsooni Parantha. Desserts like Badam Kesri Kheer, Khajur Da Halwa, as well as Gajar Da Halwa are on the takeaway menu.
Winter delicacies and seasonal staples are carefully prepared and delivered safe to your home by ITC’s home delivery service, Gourmet Coach. Dishes such as Dal Bukhara, Shahi Nehari, Subz Miloni (seasonal vegetable cooked in smooth green puree of spinach and fenugreek), Harra Kebab Awadhi and Phirni make an appearance on their menu.
Call +91 11-26112233 or +91 11-66325152 to place your order
Bangalore & Chennai
Taj Connemara, Chennai
A traditional Pongal Thali Box is available for delivery by the chefs at Raintree, Taj Connemara’s South Indian restaurant. In the years past, the thali has featured specialities like Parankikai Puli Kozambhu (curry of shallots and red pumpkin), and Vazhaithandu Porial (tempered banana stem), Sakarai Pongal (rice and lentil cooked in jaggery, tempered with cashews and raisins), Ven Pongal (rice and lentil cooked with south Indian spices) and Pala Pazha Pongal (rice and lentil cooked with fresh jackfruits). Except a similar smorgasbord of flavours this Pongal as well!
Available on January 14 and 15
Call 1800-266-7646 to place an order
Four Seasons Bengaluru
Celebrating India’s harvest season, Four Seasons Bengaluru has launched a special Utsav thali at their CUR8 restaurant. Previous editions of this thali have seen harvest dishes from all parts of India including the Punjabi favourite makke di roti and sarson da saag, the Bihari staple litti chokha, the traditional Tamilian Pongal and khara bhaat and sweet gud ka halwa. “In India, the major harvest festivals are Makar Sankranti, Lohri, Pongal, and Bihu, all of which traditionally fall in mid-January every year. And, while the dishes from the varied regions are diverse, the sentiment of gratitude and joy are the common binding factors,” says Dirham Haque, Executive Chef, Four Seasons Hotel Bengaluru.