We celebrate Dashain for a lot of reasons. Growing up, Dashain was synonymous with spending time with family and eating good food, especially meat. Despite the passage of time, the situation has remained the same. As part of Dashain, you get almost seven days off from work. Everyone gets together during this time of year and enjoys a couple of hours with their favourite people.
On Dashain, we usually drink, play cards, and eat varieties of meat items. Unlike other festivals, no requirement to keep fasting on Dashain. When you are participating in this 15-day festival, one thing you generally do is eat.
Dashain Diet in Nepal aims to provide you with a taste of Nepali food. At the Dashain festival, visitors can enjoy several types of food. The Dashain food cuisine primarily consists of goat meat. Goat meat is the main component of Nepalese Dashain food. Special Dashain Food recipes include Dal, Bhat, Tarkari, Chatani, Achar etc.
Listed below are a few of Dashain food recipes that we typically eat during Dashain. Such foods are much popular in Nepali households during Dashain.
Dashain food recipes: Mutton Curry
In Nepal, brahmins, Kshatriyas, and other cast members eat mutton as an official Dashain food. Each family raises a goat in the house to keep it for a few days.
On the eighth day of Dashain, i.e., an animal offering takes place. Dashain begins with the sacrifice of an animal to God and the receiving of its meat as prasad. Everybody’s freezers are stocked with enough meat to last them through the entire celebration of Dashain. Mutton is eaten daily during this period. Dashain is adorned with unique dishes, one of which is curry. You can find the recipe for mutton curry below:
Essentials required for preparation of Mutton Curry
Mutton – 1 kg
Garlic & ginger paste – ½ tablespoon
Cumin powder – 3 tablespoons
Salt as per your taste
Garam Masala powder – 2 tablespoons
Ghee – ¼ cup
Mustard oil – ½ cup
Cinnamon – 2 pcs
Clove – 4 pcs
Green cardamom – 2 pcs
Bay leaf – 2 pcs
Black cardamom – 2 pcs
Onion – 5 pcs finely diced
Coriander powder – 2 tablespoons
White pepper – 1 tablespoon
For marination of the raw mutton
Ginger paste – 1 tablespoon
Yoghurt – 4 tablespoons
Mustard oil – 2 tablespoons
Garlic paste – ½ tablespoon
Salt – ½ tablespoon
Step by step mutton curry preparation process
Step 1 – Running water should be used to wash cubes of chopped mutton. Drain in a separate bowl. The marinade ingredients need to get added after the water has dried. Blend the spices using your hands, rubbing them into the meat. Marinade it for about an hour or so, or you can also leave it overnight.
Step 2 – Now heat a heavy skillet on high heat. It is best to have a lid that fits tight. Then add the oil and ghee. Adding whole spices once smoke begins to come out of it is a good idea. Mutton turns very red when you add a little sugar.
Step 3 – Approximately ten minutes later, add chopped onions and cook on low heat. Salt needs to get added at this point. Onions will begin to cook immediately after this step.
Step 4 – Reduce the heat once the onions become transparent and wait for them to turn pink. Mix well with turmeric. If you’d like to add it later, you can. However, the spice can be added at the beginning of the recipe to eliminate that raw texture.
Step 5 – Stir continuously for 5-7 minutes while adding marinated mutton and ginger garlic paste.
Step 6 – Allow it to simmer for a while, covered with a lid and at a low flame. Mix all the ingredients after the mutton is almost done cooking. Add coriander, cumin, and black pepper.
Step 7 – The meat should be cooked uncovered until oil begins to separate from it. Afterwards, add half a cup of water and garam masala powder and cook until oil rises back to the surface. Thereafter, transfer the mutton curries into a bowl, adjust the seasoning, garnish with juliennes of ginger, and serve with hot chapatti.
Dashain food recipes: Mutton Sekuwa/Mutton Pakku
Also popular during the Dashain season is mutton sekuwa. The delicate meat pieces in mutton sekuwa separates from a whole goat, which then marinated and grilled.
It tastes good because of the smoked part of the meat. Hence, throughout the day we play cards while eating and drinking.
Essentials required for the preparation of ‘Mutton Sekuwa’
Mutton, thinly sliced – 2lbs
Chopped garlic – 1 tablespoon
Roasted cumin seed – 1 tablespoon
Turmeric – ½ tablespoon
Chili paste – 1 tablespoon
Tomato paste – 1 tablespoon
Chopped ginger – 1 tablespoon
Onion slices – 2 pcs
Sesame oil – 1 teaspoon
Cooking oil – 2 tablespoons
A step-by-step guide to preparing ‘Mutton Sekuwa.’
Step 1 – Blend garlic, ginger, honey, soy sauce, sesame oil, roasted cumin seeds, turmeric, chilli paste, tomato paste, and salt.
Step 2 – The spice mixture gets poured over mutton pieces in a large bowl. Incorporate the onions and bell pepper sliced, along with the oil; mix well, cover, and let marinate for at least four hours.
Step 3 – Preheat the grill. The mutton slices should be tender when you put them on the grill with the vegetables. Grill the sekuwa until it is cooked.
Step 4 – Served with rice pilaf and khursani ko achar, mutton sekuwa is best if arranged on top of it.
Dashain food recipes: Mutton Khaja Set
A popular lunch set of Dashain festival
Newars in Kathmandu Valley enjoy the lunch unique Khaja Set. Usually eaten with beaten rice, it consists of two or three curries, pickles, and fried foods. Among the residents of Kathmandu, this dish is trendy. The Khaja set consists of vegetables, chicken, beef, or mutton. Mutton khaja set, on the other hand, is the most popular during Dashain.
In the following recipe, you will find dishes such as:
- Mutton Curry consists of minced mutton. For the recipe for the Mutton Curry, please refer to the recipe stated above.
- Alu-Bodi-Tama, the next item in Mutton Khaja Set. Lentils, potatoes, and bamboo soots gravy turn out to be the best.
- The pickled meat of mutton, called Chhoila
- Chilli-infused potato gravy
- Mulako achar
- A beaten rice served which “Chiura” add crunchiness on the dish.
Dal-Bhaat-Masu, the ultimate Nepali power
Dal-Bhat-Masu is an essential part of Dashain. Especially mutton is the highlight of every day. For cooking lentils, we use a pressure cooker. Bhat, a type of rice, serves with mutton slices also known as “Masu curry”. In point one, we discussed the Mutton Curry recipe. Refer to it when preparing the Mutton Curry this Dashain season.
Chiura & Bhutan – the fired version of mutton
Bhutan fried dishes use goat’s interior. Among its contents are the intestines, internal organs, etc. The traditionally prepared bhutan delivers on the day of Maha Asthami. Alternatively, it could be Dashain food recipes.
During this day, the family members cook up the internal organs. Because everyone who has contributed in preparing the meat and cutting it can enjoy it. The activity is fun and an excellent way to meet new people.
Essentials required for the preparation of Bhutan Chiura
Stomach pieces from goats
Pieces of goat livers
Intestine pieces from goats
Ground cinnamon powder – 1 tablespoon
Fennel seeds – 1 tablespoon
Lemon juice – 1 pcs
Turmeric powder – 1 tablespoon
Salt – 1 tablespoon
Cumin powder – 2 tablespoon
Red chilli powder – 1 tablespoon
Chopped onion – 1/2 cup
Oil – 2 tablespoon
A step-by-step guide to preparing ‘Bhutan Chiura.’
Step 1 – Clean the goat intestine and stomach thoroughly with cold and hot water
Step 2 – Bring water to a boil and add cinnamon sticks or powder and fennel seeds.
Step 3 – The liver, intestine, and stomach should be cooked in boiling water for 25 minutes.
Step 4 – Clean and re-strain them with water and set them aside to cool
Step 5 – Slice them into bite-size pieces
Step 6 – In a skillet, add the oil and turmeric powder
Step 7 – Saute the cut pieces for 2-3 minutes and add salt, cumin powder, and red chilli powder
Step 8 – Cook for 25 minutes on medium heat until it turns dark in colour
Step 9 – Stir in chopped onion and serve hot
Dashain is a festival that lasts more than a week… that is about 10 days plus 5 extra days. During the holidays, families focus on eating well and being together. Our family enjoys good food and new recipes during this time, and there is something new to try with the family each day. The family always enjoys spending time together, cooking new foods, and eating together. We hope you will be trying out an unknown delicacy every day; however, during COVID-19, stay safe and enjoy the Dashain festival 2021.