The present generation of Odia children are perhaps deprived of enjoying a bite of Poda Pitha on the occasion of the Raja Festival, which the elders were privileged with. The traditional way of making Poda Pitha in a make-shift Chullah in which charcoal and dried cow-dung cake is used as fuel, is now a thing of the past. Modern day households would rather use a pressure cooker and the gas chullah, even though it means being deprived of the unique feel of the traditional kind of taste and flavor that Poda Pitha is associated with.
300gm Rice (chaula)
150gm black gram - without outer skin (chopa-chhada biri)
1 cup finely scrubbed coconut (nadia kora)
10-15 small pieces of thin coconut slices (nadia khandi)
200gm sugar (chini)
50gm chopped ginger (kata ada)
½ bowl of cashew nut – broken into pieces ( khandi kaju)
1 table spoon ghee or refined oil (ghia / refain tela)
½ teaspoon salt (luna)
1 teaspoon baking powder (baking powder
Soak the rice and black gram in water in separate bowls for about 4 hours. Wash them thoroughly. Put the black gram with water in the grinder and form a fine batter. Do the same with rice too but keep in mind that the batter should be coarse and not as fine as the batter of black gram. Mix both the batters and add coconut slices, grated coconut, chopped ginger, salt, sugar, cashew nuts and baking powder. Mix all the ingredients well and keep it covered for about 2 hours for self-fermentation. Pre-heat the pressure cooker. Form a thin layer of oil on all the inner surface of the cooker. Now pour the mixed batter into the cooker and close the lid (without mounting the whistle-weight). Place the pressure cooker in simmer flame for about one hour. Now your hot poda pitha is ready. When the cooker comes to normal temperature take out the pitha carefully, and cut it into desired shapes and serve. (Note: Instead of pressure cooker, oven may also be used).
You may also see a video of the recipe at the following link.
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