Come 14th April, and most of India and all of North India will spend the Sunday celebrating a vibrant and vivid 'Baisakhi' – a Sikh festival to mark the commencement of the Khalsa way of living. It is essentially the Sikh New Year and commemorates the formation of the Khalsa Panth of warriors under Guru Govind Singh. A spring harvest celebration, Baisakhi is celebrated with traditional fervour and grandeur. All Gurudwaras are decorated with painstaking effort and kirtans are held all day long. Sikhs indulge in a holy bath at a river or lake before visiting the Gurudwara where community fairs, performances and processions are held.
While singing, dancing, wearing bright and colourful clothes are all significant to this festival, an important part of any Indian festival or celebration, for that matter, is food. Most festivals have signature dishes attached to them. And in the case of Baisakhi, while non-vegetarian dishes like achari mutton, tandoori chicken and saag meat are made traditionally and sarson da saag, makke di roti, pindi chana and biryani in the vegetarian dishes, sweets are where all the fun lies.
The list can go on to include sooji halwa, mango lassi, coconut laddoos, malai kheer, dry fruit halwa, boondi ladoo or even exotic puddings like apple kheer.
Can't make up your mind as to what to try this Baisakhi? Well, why stop at one – try them all!
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