Naag Panchami food is prepared to celebrate the auspicious festival of snakes known as Naag Panchami in India. The food on this day is mostly fruits, milk, milk products and specially prepared sweets, all of which are made without frying as the Hindu tradition forbids frying of any food item on this day. Conservative devotees go to the extent of keeping friend food completely away from their homes.
Naag Panchami Recipes and Food Menu
Naag Panchami food, as mentioned earlier, is prepared without frying anything and therefore, traditional recipes do not require any frying, but this does not make the preparations any less elaborate. Black Sesame Ladoos, Narial Mithai (sweet made from Coconut) and Patholi are the important preparations on the day of the festival and generally prepared by womenfolk in households.
Although it is not absolutely necessary, some people keep fast on the Naag Panchami day and as per the tradition followed, only one meal is consumed in the evening. This meal is generally an elaborate preparation inclusive of sweets and non-fried food. As the festival generally comes during the Indian Summer season, refreshing drinks are an important part of Naag Panchami food.
Significance of Naag Panchami Dishes
Naag Panchami food items, most of them at least, are specially designed to pay a tribute to the various snake-Gods worshipped during the occasion. As the festival was traditionally celebrated to honour the snake-Gods and snakes, most food preparations included milk and milk products. Traditionally, milk and cooked rice was offered to snakes carried by snake charmers. These two food items have now managed to become an important part of the food prepared and served during the day of Naag Panchami.
Modern Naag Panchami Recipes and Their Variants
Naag Panchami food preparations mostly consist of sweets, milk, milk products and rice. It is, however, common to buy these from sweet shops and restaurants nowadays and they don’t necessarily have to be made at home. Preparations have also become healthier in terms of preparation methods and ingredients used. As Naag Panchami food mostly consists of sweets which are very high in fat and sugar content when made the traditional way, low-calorie and low-fat versions of these preparations are now commonly prepared.
Also, many now do not have many qualms about consuming fried food items or making them at home. Traditionalists, however, insist that sticking to traditional methods of preparation and ingredients and following all rituals, especially the Naag Panchami recipes, is the only way to celebrate the festival.
Customary Ways to Serve and Eat Naag Panchami Food
Naag Panchami preparations are first offered to snake charmers and in temples and then consumed. Those who fast pray first and then break their fast with milk or milk based drink and sweets. Devotees offer milk to snakes and pray to the snake Gods before settling down to enjoy the special Naag Panchami food. Friends and family get together and enjoy the preparations together.