Today’s post is about Ghenja.Ghenja is a festival in Garhwal which is celebrated in the poosh month(in english calendar December mid to January mid).Every-year celebration date is different, based on the Indian hindu panchang (panchang is an Indian hindu calendar where different festivals and occasions are marked).It is always 27 gate(date) poosh(Hindu calendar) and this year it was on 12th January.
The word Gheja came from dish name called Ghenja.We prepare ghenja from flour. We grind wheat, rice, corn and barnyard millet (Jhangriyal in local language)together in chakki (Mill) in order to prepare flour of ghenja . In hill the flour is called ‘Mota anaj’ and flour of mota anaj is good for health. Jhangriyal, which can be easily digested, is a rich source of calcium, protein and iron.
First mix flour with sweet water if you are making sweet Ghenja and normal water if making some stuffed one. Make a dough and leave it for 5 minutes. After 5 minutes roll the small dough like round bread. It is prepared in steam you need big lemon leaf covered both side of bread so that it will not stick with each other. One more additional use of lemon leaf is to get flavour of lemon. Now you can put bread inside steam vessel, it will take 10-15 minutes to prepare and you are ready to eat. If you do not have steam vessel just keep it in normal big vessel with some dry grass at bottom to avoid burn and put little water for making steam in vessel and I am sure it will work as this is traditional way of preparing it.
Ghenja is prepared with steam and no oil and other ingredients are required.This is the main reason that it is considered healthy food in winter. It looks like missi roti and prepared like idli in south India or dumpling in china. After 10~15 minutes in steam you can serve it alone or with yummy yogurt of Himalaya. Festival is big in its celebration and represent strong relation of farmer with family.
One thing I am still researching is about why we celebrate this festival ? Is there any ancient story behind it? Currently I can see only health benefit behind it, which can easily understood by seeing its recipe and the way we prepare this.If you have any further details about this festival or you know the story or any interesting fact about the festival please share with all.
Last time we asked that why we celebrate GHENJA and here is the story behind it.We got information from some other people and identity is Confidential and if the will allow us we will disclose the name.
There was a saint in old time who has three son. First one was educator a spiritualist, while second one warrior. Third one was music lover and he become a music instrument player.
All the time when second son won any battle the first one always celebrate it with big level which make them prosperous as well as famous in the surrounding. Third son was a charm of all festival , traditional events due to his high value of musical instruments. Whenever there is discussion about big things , saint always make his first two son as representative.
slowly slowly saint third son feel this inequality and become sad. He stoped to visit any festival and any events in the city.Due to continuous absence of his third son, all festival glory charm was disappearing slowly slowly.
When saint seen this he called all three son and asked youngest one why are you so sad?He said that I am an artist and not have firm interest in name and fame but i need opportunity time for all of you to celebrate my art of instrument and music.
Saint feel his mistake of neglecting his third son so he gave him blessing that we all will celebrate a festival named GHENJA dedicated to you are your work in the month of Poosh(English month Dec mid ~ Jan Mid) when there is no festival just two days before Makar Sankranti. This was the way Ghenja came in existence.
Note: All the facts are imaginary taught by elders, and we make it as story to keep entertaining readers. There is no relation of this story to any reality.
Happy belated Ghenja festival to all beloved 🙂