Ugadi. The name came from Yuga +Adi. In sanskrit Yuga means era, Adi means beginning. Ugadi means beginning of an era. Ugadi is the new year's day for few parts of India like(Andhra pradesh, Karnataka). The same festival is celebrated in Maharashra with different name as Gudi Padwa. Ugadi is celbrated based on the Hindu Calendar. The calendar begins with Chaitra masam(Month).
Meaning/Importance behind Ugadi Pachhadi:
In Andhra and Karnataka Ugadi is celebrated by praying to god and eating a special pachhadi called Ugadi Pachhadi. This pachhadi is a mixture of Shadruchulu(6 tastes).
My mom used to say,when you first taste the ugadi pacchadi whichever the taste you feel first is how the most of the year will be.
Example: If the first taste is sweet then that year will be full of happiness.
So each taste has different meaning which is related to our daily life experiences.
For eg: Sweet symbolized for Happiness.
Bitter is symbolized for Sadness etc.
In the evening we used to listen to Panchangra Sravanam by my parents or the elders of the family. Panchanga Sravanam is nothing but Forecast of the year.
We used to eagerly wait for this day to eat tasty Ugadi Pachhadi and to hear about our future for that year. I really miss those days.
Today I tried to make few of the dishes( like Ugadi Pachhadi, Poornam Boorelu, Mango Pulihora) which my mom used to do on Ugadi day and went to Livermore temple. I am so thankful to god. Till now I am able to get Neem flowers for every Ugadi even after coming to U.S.A.
Here is the recipe:
1 cup of tamarind juice/pulp
1/2 cup grated jaggery
pinch of salt
1/4tsp red chili powder
1 raw mango
1/2tsp neem flowers
Grate Jaggery, remove tamarind pulp. chop bananas and raw mango.
Mix all these ingredients along with salt, red chili powder and neem flower. Delicious Ugadi Pachhadi is ready to be served.