Mostly I feel more thirsty than hungry. But somehow it feels good to fast on the day. Its not just 'fast for your husband's long life' as is mostly portrayed, its also about celebrating your wedded life and marriage.
According to traditional custom, a married woman takes the 'sargi', which is prepared specially for the ocassion by the mother-in-law, and leaves on the previous day to go to her mother’s house. In the wee hours of the morning she eats it with her mother and other aunts that have gathered there. The fast begins at twilight, and women fast from food and water.
When the day starts, the women folk spend decorating themselves with henna and getting dressed up in their wedding apparels, and pretty much look like brides. In today’s times they go shopping, they especially buy decorated bangles and sometimes spend the afternoon at the movies!
Ive always heard the one that Ive shown below, “kudiye karwada....”. Here in Africa, we gather mostly at the local temple hall and do this ceremony. Then one of the elder lady tells us the ‘katha’, the story behind the fast. The hardcore ‘pindi’ punjabi (village accent) becomes a foreign language to me and I’m lost after a few lines into the story!
I just enjoy the whole ceremony of seeing so many women all dressed up. Its like seeing all your friends, aunts, and all women as brides all on the same day! We admire each other’s jewellery, mehndi and wedding gowns etc. :D
A lot of woman take their first sip of water after this ceremony, and have some form of liquid to relieve themselves. They have food only after the moon comes out. Some (really dedicated wives) wait with thirsty throats up until the time the moon comes out.
And because some of us are in the southern hemisphere… we waited till 10:30pm and there was no sign of the moon… After another gruelling, half an hour…the moon was sighted at 11:00pm and we finally broke our fasts and had food. By then I wasn’t even hungry, but nevertheless ate to replenish the energy I had lost! My malayalee husband still doesn’t get why I need to do all this… I know I do it for the fun of it!
Karva chauth ki sargi
What you need:
- 250 gm wheat vermicelli
- 50 gm ghee (can completely zero the ghee, if you want to make it fat free)
- 1 Lt full cream milk (can easily use 2% reduced or even skim milk to make it ‘lighter’)
- 200 gms sugar (again, this amount gives the kheer a mild sweetness, up or own the amount to suit your palate). Here sugar can also be substituted for brown sugar or jaggery for more flavour.
- A few pods whole elaichi
- Saffron strands
- Chopped nuts of your choice ( I did not put any in this version)
What you need to do: