Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Enduri Pitha and Prathamashtami

Prathamashtami is one of the most popular festivals of Orissa, peculiar to the region. This is the eighth day in the month of Margasira in which the eldest child of the family is honoured. He or she is given new clothes to wear and which was a big sorrow of mine.When i was small as im the yonger child,i dint get new clothes as my elder brother.But my mom used to bring back smile on my face by giving me enduri pitha soon after the puja...It tastes heavenly awesome,so i used to 4get my sorrows.....

Main Ritual

The elder child is made to sit on a wooden pedestal (Pidha). In fornt of him/her an earthen pitcher, full of water is placed on handfuls of paddy. Above it a branch of mango leaves and a cocoanut is placed. Then, the mother wishes him /her long-life and good health by praying Sasthi Debi, the Goddess that protects children.

The social significance of this festival is that the first-borns are brighter and it is ultimately they who take up the burden of the family after the death of the parents. According to psychologists the first-borns are mostly healthy, obedient and tradition-bound. Therefore, the family tradition is maintained through them. For such obvious reasons the eldest child is honoured to occupy the respectable place in the family after the death of the parents.

Enduri Pitha/Haldi Patra Pitha

A special variety of cake is prepared on this occasion which is known as 'Enduri'.In some places it also known as Haldi Patra Pitha. The cake is offered to the Goddess of Sasthi and then taken by all. In the temple of Lingaraj at Bhubaneswar, the festival is observed with great devotion. On this day the repesentative deity of Lingaraj is taken out in a palanquin to a tank called "Papanasini" which is situated just behind the temple.

This has been a part of the traditional Oriya festivities. There is a striking similaity of the pitha with patholi, a popular dish of Kerala. It is surprising how this recipe found common acceptance in two different remote culinary cultures centuries back.

I made enduri pitha with ghughuni(another yummy delicacy of orissa).You can have it with dalma or even with mutton curry .


1 cup rice
1 cup black gram
1 cup grated coconut
100 gm cottage cheese
If u can use Dahi chhena, it'll be better.
150 gm jaggery
3 small cardamoms
6 black peppers
Green turmeric leaves (haladi patra)
Salt to taste


Soak rice and blackgram Overnight.
Use only the skinless blackgram for the purpose.
Wash the same thoroughly and then grind into a thick batter.
It need not be a very fine paste. Grind leaving a little coarseness in the rice. Whip well.
Leave the batter for fermenting for about 2 hours.
Add salt and mix well.
Now to prepare the stuffing, place a frying pan on medium flame.
Put the coconut, cottage chheese and jaggery. Stir and fry the same till it becomes a little dry.
Then add powdered cardamom and blackpepper. Mix well and keep aside.
Now to prepare the pitha take one whole green turmeric leaf (If the leaf is of bigger size you may trim it).
Put a little batter on the leaf and flatten the same.
Then put the required quantity of stuffing on the batter and fold the turmeric leaf lengthwise in such a way that the stuffing gets sandwitched in between two layers of batter.
Now we are going to steam it in the traditional way.
It is similar to the way we steam idli. But the round shaped moulds found inthe idli stands won't do.
Because our pitha is long shaped. So if you are using an idli stand instead of using the round shaped moulds make suitable modifications.
Other wise to follow an age-old Oriya method take a wide mouthed pot. Fill it upto half with water.
Then tie a muslin cloth tightly around its mouth.
Carefully place the folded leaves containing stuffed batter on the cloth. Cover it with a concave shaped lid. Steam it till done and fork comes out clean. This way go on steaming pithas .
The delicate aroma of turmric leaf is a special feature of the pitha.
In case of non-availability of green turmetic leaf, you could also alternatively use banana leaf.
But in that case the aroma of turmeric leaf would be missing.


  1. Dear Mughdha
    Thank you so much for this great recipe. I dont know from where to get turmeric leaf in Noida or Delhi.
    Regarding cultural similarity between Kerala and Orissa / Bengal, People have many theory.The one theory I like is ...There was sea trade route between Malabar cost and east coast of Orissa and bengal. There were lot of social exchanges 1000s of years back.
    Have a nice day.

  2. Hi Ushanish,
    In this matter i was lucky coz(my n laws came some days back from Orissa and they brought turmeric leaves with them)...here i dont have idea where you can get them.....and abt the similarity n cultures,im also agree with u...nywayz try this recipe whenever u'll get the leaves or try it wid banana leaves...Have nice time...TC

    1. hi people, you can get turmeric leaf from the Puja Stall of Hauz Khas Jagannath Mandir, 2/3 days prior to Prathamastami.

  3. In odisha,many use ratio of rice floor 90 n 10percent black lentil,or urad...
    Or this is as per convenience


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