Monday, January 23, 2017

"YAJJI" A KASHMIRI SNACK OF YORE


                                                                            



YAJJI......

Yajji was a snack  speciality of our past. It was generally prepared and consumed during July-August months corresponding to Rainy season or Vahraat in kashmir . Like Maalpurees of Jammu , this delicacy was quite popular during rainy season. Yajji was consumed with


Many kashmiri Pandit families offered  it to Shiva or Bhairva . They also prepared Yajji on shivratri day or Gadda Bataah  ( fish and rice ritual ) Ritual  in winter .

Yajji was  consumed with a vegetable commonly Lessa- Gordaeil ( Green Leaves with  Hard Green Plums Both sour )  , Obbijj  ( Green leafy vegetable having sour taste )  and Tso'kk Wangun ( Brinjals  with Tamarind ).

The word Yajji became a part of popular Kashmiri metaphors /phrases like:


Guss khe/Tsaap yajji...Go and idle away your time by eating Yajji


Su chhu Yajji Maadhav..He is a good for nothing fellow.



Even Lalded uses the word Yajji in one Vaakh and says..


“Moodus Gyaaneitch Kath no vanizeh
Kharrus go'rr deun raavi doh
Seiki shhaatus Phal no vovizeh
Raavi komm yaajjein teel.."
                          

"To a fool, say not a word of knowledge,
Waste not your day in making a donkey eat sugar candy,
Plant not fruit trees in a desert
Waste not cooking oil on Yajji prepared from rice husk (when these needed rice powder)."


 Noted scholar Dr. Shahi Shekhar Toshkhani adds:



“It was a kind of fast food which Kashmiris in not so distant a past enjoyed for its yummy taste. It could have been promoted very much like the South Indian Idli-Dosa, but Kashmiris have given it up like several other indigenous dishes which with slight improvement could have become a hit.”


Yajji is prepared by making a dough of powdered rice mixed with zeera ( Cumin seeds ) , Ajwain ( carom Seeds ), crushed walnut kernels ,common salt and a little Curd. This dough is moulded on hands to give it a shape of small cups or something like half coconut.It is finally fried.

Grandma's method of making yajji was wonderful; Dum Pukhta fried in Leijj or earthenware cooking pot with a lid over it.

Probably  word yajji got identified with lethargy, lack of initiative, poverty and backwardness and  gradually vanished from our kitchen.

  Presently , it is  being prepared in some households in Pressure Cookers  and consumed with  Kehwa Tea instead vegetables .

(Autar Mota)y

PS

Kashmir Pandits  are shaivites  and  Rudra is angry shiva . To please him , Rudra puja was done. It was   always performed  during rainy season since vedic age. Yajji was also offered to Rudra  during Rainy season to protect the crops , life , dwellings  from floods and  Devastation of  Rain water . 


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CHINAR SHADE by Autarmota is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.5 India License.
Based on a work at http:\\autarmota.blogspot.com\.

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