Let's Learn About Pongal
The only thing I knew about "Pongal" before I married my Tamilian husband was that it was a delicious sticky rice dish. I was treated to some as a teenager while visiting an Aunty's home in Southern India and I must admit, I probably ate more than I should have!
Pongal is a 4 day Harvest Festival celebrated in mid January, in Tamil Nadu and other South Indian states. It's a wonderful way of marking a season of renewal with several rituals symbolic of "out with the old, in with the new." Here is a summary of each day:
Day 1: Bhogi - Get rid of useless household items
Day 2: Thai Pongal - Cook and serve sakkarai (sweet) pongal
Day 3: Maddu Pongal - Celebrate cows
Day 4: Kannum Pongal - Family reunions (visit and "see" your family)
Here are some kid-friendly resources you can share with your family, to help them learn more about Pongal.
- A basic overview of Pongal (2 mins, English with Tamil words)
- Song about Pongal for kids, made by Magic Box Animation (90s, Tamil with English subtitles)
- The mythological story of Pongal by Professor Brenda Beck (6 mins, English with Tamil words)
- Why are Pongal, Lohri and Makar Sankranti on the same day? Jalebi street episode (5 mins, English)
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Living in the US, how can we bring this holiday home to our kids? What rituals and traditions do you celebrate in your home? Do you have a favorite recipe to share? Leave a comment below or message us on IG .
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