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amma enrazhaika enna thavam seidhanai, Yashodha...

amma enrazhaika enna thavam seidhanai, Yashodha...

Vishnu, the preservative aspect of the universe and one of the Hindu Trinity, is said to take birth in this mortal world of our’s, whenever it is overburdened with evil-doers and sinners, who by their wicked actions upset the equilibrium of the earth. One such incarnation is the birth of “Krishna “as the son of king Vasudeva and his wife Devaki and his story is recorded in the famous work of the Hindus known as Bhagavatam. Born to rid the world of the wicked, he was secretly brought up by the chief of the Yadavas (cowherds) to whom he was taken as soon as he was born, since his uncle Kansa considered him an enemy and wanted to get rid of him as soon as he was born, by putting him to death.

Sri Krishna Jayanthi is the auspicious day Lord Krishna, (an avatar of  Lord Vishnu), was born in this world. It is also called Krishnashtami, Saatam Aatham, Gokulashtami, Ashtami Rohini, Srikrishna Jayanti, Sree Jayanthi, Janmashtami, Dahi Handi. While the festival is celebrated in north India as Janmashtami, in the south, the festival is celebrated as Sri Krishnajayanthi, Janmashtami or Gokulashtami.

The idol of Lord Krishna is placed in a decorated Mantapa on which the Bhakshanam (snacks and sweets in Tamil) that are specially prepared for the festival are offered along with fruits considered the favourites of Lord Krishna. The pooja is performed late in the evening, because as Krishna was born at midnight. Generally, most of the sweets and savouries are prepared on that day. Normally, a kolam (rice flour drawings on ground) drawn specially for the occasion, called ezhaKolam decorates the front yard. Kolam in Tamil, also called Rangoli in the rest of India, is drawn using soaked rice ground to a fine paste and mixed with water. A white cloth is used to soak the paste and draw. Footprints representing those of Krishna are drawn from the front yard to the pooja room, representing the GOD entering the devotee’s home.

Kutti padams drawn using my hands with rice flour

Kutti padams drawn using my hands with rice flour

After the decorations are over, the pooja will be performed with Ganesha poojai as the start, followed by Krishna pooja, Ashtothram, Neivedhyam, Arthi and songs can be sung. 



I typically fast the whole day and would start making the bakshanams. Uppu seedai( deep fried rice flour marbles), Vella Seedai ( sweet version of the previous one), Appam( wheat and banana dumpling), Puli Avil( Poha), Dhal Paayasam, Thenguzhal or Mullu muruku, butter, Ghee and Curd can be offered.

Neivedhyam for Lord Krishna

Neivedhyamfor Lord Krishna

The little ones are thrilled about Janmaashtami, as it is a baby God’s Birthday. My husband and I had a hearty laughter, when our daughter at age 4 asked, “Where is the birthday cake for lord Krishna? ” On Janmaashtami day, I also dress up my little girl as Krishna or Radha and adore her. Krishna is also called “Makhan Chor” or “Butter stealer”, as Butter and Avil (Poha or beaten Rice)  are his favourites. king of avil, let me narrate you, quickly the story of Sudama( Kuchela) and Krishna.

Sudama (Kuchela) and Krishna were good childhood friends. Sudama was from a poor brahmin family and Krishna was from a Royal Family, but their social status never affected their friendship. As they grew up, both went their ways and Krishna became the Ruler of Dwaraka and Sudama lived a humble life of a poor brahmin in the village. Sudama was going through difficulty, that he did not even have money to feed his children. His wife reminded him of Krishna’s friendship and urged him to get some help. Initially reluctant, sudama finally agreed to meet Krishna for help.

Sudama wanted to give his friend some gift, when he sees him. There was nothing at home except a small amount of beaten rice (Poha in Hindi or Avil in Tamil). He remembered that it was Krishna’s favorite and took that in a small cloth, tied with a  knot. Overwhelmed with joy, the two friends, hug each other and talk all old stories and all the small mischievous deeds. Krishna treats Sudama royally with lot of Love and affection. Sudama hesitates to give the small gift he had brought, but Krishna actually grans it from his hands and starts eating the Poha with great relish. Sudama feels happy and returns home, forgetting the purpose of his visit to ask help. But to his surprise, he returns home to see his hut had been transformed into a Mansion and his wife greets him with silk clothes and fine jewelry. Krishna  had transformed the poor brahmin’s life to a royal life.

This story is told to illustrate that the Lord does not differentiate, people based on their social status and he will reward devotion always. Another moral is not to trade bhakti for anything in return. Sudama did not ask Krishna for anything. Despite being poor Sudama had given Krishna everything he had (poha) hence in return the Lord gave Sudama everything he needed.

A beautiful Sari of mine with Krishna

A beautiful Sari of mine with Krishna

Let me tell you, how to make a simple dish with Poha( Krishna’s most favorite Avil). Even if you cant do the elaborate neivedhyams, a simple Avil(Poha) offered, with a lot of Bhakthi and devotion, will be gracefully accepted by GOD.

Puli Avil: ( Poha Upma with tamarind and spices)

Puli Avil Upma

Puli Avil Upma

Ingredients:                                                                      Krishna

  • Avil(Poha)- 2cups.
  • Tamarind paste(Imli)- 3/4 tsp.
  • Curry powder-2tsp.
  • Salt- to taste.
  • Shredded coconuts- 3tsp.

For Seasoning:

  • Oil- 1tsp.
  • Mustard seeds- 1tsp.
  • Urad Dhal-1tsp.
  • Channa Dhal-1tsp.
  • Red chillies-2.
  • Curry leaves- 1arc.
  • Asafoetida- a pinch.
  • Turmeric powder- a pinch.

Curry Powder:

Dry roast Coriander seeds 1/2 cup, channa dhal -1 cup and  4 red chillies and powder them coarsely.


  1. Wash the poha and soak it in tamarind paste for 10 minutes.
  2. Take oil in kadai and add one by one, all the ingredients mentioned in the seasoning.
  3. Add salt, turmeric, curry powder and soaked Avil(Poha).
  4. Stir everything and let it cook in low heat for 5-10 minutes.
  5. Add shredded coconuts for garnish.
Tulsi plant

Tulasi plant in my deck, (tulsi leaves can be used for pooja)

My Krishna Collections

My Krishna Collections

My Krishna collections has been growing like my Ganesha collections. I have close to 16 Krishna’s in the form of  Iskcon paintings, Silk fabric painting, kalamkari, Tanjore paintings, glass painting, idols, sculptures etc.

Sending this to Purva Daawat’s festive food event



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Everybody cooks at home……. But some, turn every dish they cook  into magic. They have the Kaipakkuvam to turn almost everything they cook delicious. My mom is an exceptionally good cook. I guess,she adds a lot of love to the dishes she makes. The best part is being an active career woman, she never compromised on cooking. We lived in a small industrial town called MetturDam, where there weren’t many fancy restaurants. So my mom had to cook almost everyday of the year. I am amazed at her time management skills. She can cook an elaborate meal within an hour.

People say it’s really difficult to do traditional indian sweets. My mom is too sweet!. She can do Baadhusha, Mysorepak, BadamCake, Cashew Cake with great ease. My daughter ananya is a big fan of her Cashew Cake. Ananya calls it “Square sweet”. When she is on the phone with grandma, she always asks when is she gonna make her the square sweet.

She doesn’t just cook tasty. She cooks healthy too. Every sunday my dad would go to “Sandhai” -bazaar and buy loads of veggies and fruits. His shoulders would ache sometimes. We always had 2 or 3 vegetables and a salad in every meal. The salad cutting would be done by my dad. He helps my mom cutting vegetables for avial and helps her with sevai making etc. She had excellent friends who would motivate and help her if she is doing bakshanams in huge proportions. And Of course Me and my brother Hari would help her in eating all the dishes she makes. When she makes vadams in the summer time, we would offer to help her watch them, so that the crows dont  take them away. In the process of watching them, we would have eaten, most of them. I remember waking up on sunday mornings from the aroma of the vegetable biriyani she makes…. Awesome Days!

My Mom and Dad

My Mom and Dad

Her background:

N. Jayalashmi(My mom), is one among 8 siblings. She was born and brought up near Pudukottai. Educated in Chennai (formely Madras). Moved to MetturDam with my dad ( V. Subramanian) after she got married.

Her Hobbies:

She is very talented and skilled. She is good at doing  handicrafts-dolls with beads which we use for Navrathri golu,wall hangings and images of God with beads, wire baskets and does a lot of Knitting and crochet. She has made hats, mufflers,baby blankets, sweaters & booties for my lil one. She does excellent Kolam-Rangoli. There is nobody that would not stop to admire her Yezha kolam with kaavi-which is a traditional rangoli of south indian brahmins. I would call her my official dress designer. She is always brimming with new ideas and creative ways to stich a dress material. She has kool color choices and a flair for elegant cotton sarees. I have officially stolen a lot of her lovely cotton sarees. She also does part time clothing business.

Her Motherhood:

I still remember, how i felt When her Visa  to the US got rejected. I couldn’t possibly imagine my delivery without her by my side. Thank God, she got her Visa , the second time. She did 1008  kozhakatttais for Pillayar(Lord Ganesha) for being able to be by my side when I most needed her in my life. After I became a mom, I even more realize how sacrificing mother’s are. On those rainy “Kunuku days”, she would give us even the single piece she had saved for her. She shaped us into good individuals. She used to dress me and my brother in different costumes. Ready made costumes were not available then. So she would make everything on her own. My dad would make the Flute, kireedam-Crown and Vel  and my mom would take care of making a small panchakacham,garlands, make up etc.

Her career:

 She has M.Sc,M.Ed, M.Phil. She is a teacher by profession. She taught in Ethiraj college before she got married. She taught Higher Secondary Chemistry in Malco Vidyalaya Matriculation Higher Secondary School. I was in her class. I have never seen her while away her time. She is either doing  paper evaluation, question paper setting, taking tuition classes,preparing question banks, going on supervision(when students give their examinations) or running to take morning special classes for 12th students. Even in the weekends she would go to school for taking entrance preparation classes. She has published her own question banks and guide booklets. She is such an efficient and Hard working individual.

After being in a Rewarding career as a teacher for almost 35 years, As she gives her Voluntary Retirement , I salute her for all her hard work and devotion.

To speak of her in one sentence-A very good Wife, a great Mom , a devoted Teacher and a super adorable grandmom( To ananya)

Amma-I love you!

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