Sankrant symbolizes the onset of the harvest season and the end of winter. It has been celebrated as the harvest festival right from the times of the Aryans. The Sun God, Surya, is said to turn his back on winter with his chariot of seven horses marching forward. In Mahabharata too, the auspiciousness of this period is mentioned. Bhishma Pitamaha, in spite of being wounded and lying on a bed of arrows, waits for 'Uttarayan' to set in before breathing his last. It is believed that a person who dies in this period attains 'moksha' (salvation) and escapes the cycle of birth and death.
In Maharashtra this period is called as sankraman kal. On the Sankranti day sweets are prepared from Til (sesame) and Gul (jaggery) which again warms your body. Its an occasion to visit near and dear ones and distribute tilgul saying "Tilgul ghya, god god bola" that means "Take a tilgul and talk sweet as it". The under-lying thought in the exchange of tilguls is to forget the past ill-feelings and hostilities and resolve to speak sweetly and remain friends.
In this 'sankraman kal' you have to do 'Daan' so, this is a special day for the women in Maharashtra when married women are invited for a get-together called ‘Haldi-Kumkum’ and given gifts of any utensil or any useful items. This is the only day when black colour is auspicious. So married woman wears black sarees and for infants also Maharashtrian people purchase a black dress.
[Black Rangoli by my Sister Sneha on the occasion of Sankranti Haldi kumkum]
So here is my recipe for Sankrant….
Sesame seeds- 2 cups
Groundnuts - 1/2 cups
Grated dry coconut - 1/2 cup
Grated Jaggery - 1 cup
cardamom powder - 1/2 tea spoon
Take a kadai and first roast sesame seeds and keep aside. Roast groundnut and keep aside to cool. Lastly roast grated dry coconut. When all the three ingredients get cooled mix it and grind the mixture to powder. Because of the oil in Sesame, Groundnut and coconut, this mixture will become moist. Add cardamom powder. Now make a small small balls (ladoo) of it. These will keep easily for 2 weeks.
Give this Ladoo, 'Sweet balls' to your near and dear one and say '' TIL GUL GHYAA GOD GOD BOLA''
I want to contribute this to Preeti's Festive Food.