Janmashtami is celebrated as the birth of Lord Krishna, the eight incarnation of Lord Vishnu. In many parts of the country it is referred as Gokulashtami and Shri Krishna Jayanti. This festival is celebrated with great charm and enthusiasm by Indians throughout the country and even overseas. Devotees welcome Bal Gopal (Newly Born or baby Krishna) with great love and devotion.
They celebrate the festival with fasting, singing devotional songs and prayer throughout the night, offering special food called as Naivedyam to Lord Krishna and sharing it with devotees, friends and family. People visit Krishna’s temple at night to get Lord Krishna’s blessings. Many communities also organize dance and drama depicting Lord Krishna’s life, called as Raas Leela or Krishna’s Leela. Devotees are also seen chanting, “Hathi Ghoda Palki, Jai Kanhaiya Lal ki” which means Elephants, Horses and cradle, all are ready to welcome Lord Krishna. Hail Baby Krishna.
Lord Krishna was born in Mathura, a city in Uttar Pradesh state of India. It is believed that he was born at midnight on the eight day of Krishna Paksh (dark fortnight) in the month of Shravana. Lord Krishna was Vasudev’s & Devaki’s eighth child. Right after his birth, Vasudev took Krishna across Yamuna River to his foster parents named Nanda & Yashoda at Gokul. Devaki’s brother Kamsa was a tyrant ruler. He knew that Devaki’s eighth kid will be the reason of his death, so he imprisoned Devaki and Vasudev after their nuptials and killed all the seven kids that were born. But before he could know the birth of eighth child, Krishna was taken to Gokul. Kamsa sent many demons to kill little Krishna but no one could stand Krishna’s power and were crushed. Finally, Krishna arrived to Mathura and killed his uncle Kamsa.
Lord Krishna was born with all super powers of Lord Vishnu. He was born to spread love and peace on earth, and end the evil. His preaching includes compassion and to evade sins, to think positive and keep doing our good deeds without thinking of the outcome. This festival is celebrated as the victory of good over evil.
As Janmashtami is around the corner, we will share with you the very famous Naivedyam which is offered to Lord Krishna called as Dhaniya Panjiri. Dhaniya Panjiri is made with coriander seeds powder roasted in little clarified butter, to which sugar is added for sweetness. And to make it rich dry fruits and nuts are also added. Normally, Panjiri is made with wheat flour, but as any grains or flour is not consumed during fasts, coriander seeds powder is used to make Panjiri. This Panjiri is made with few ingredients and is very nutritious. Coriander seeds are rich in copper, magnesium, iron, potassium, manganese, and zinc. These essential minerals help in increasing red blood cell count and improves metabolism. It helps in keeping blood pressure and diabetes in control. It is helpful to soothe acidity, and ease constipation, clear toxins and prevent indigestion. It is also believed that coriander seeds help to increase lactation. Dhaniya Panjiri is a must on the day of Janmashtami at my house. It is offered with other Naivedyam like fruits, sweets, and panchamrut, and offered to Lord Krishna.
- 1 Cup Dhaniya powder/ Coriander Seeds powder
- 3/4 Cup Powdered Sugar
- 3 Tbsp. Ghee/ Clarified Butter
- 2 Tbsp. Slivered Almonds
- 2 Tbsp. Cashews halved
- 2 Tbsp. Raisins
Heat a pan with a tbsp. of ghee and roast almonds and cashews separately till it changes color. In the same pan take the remaining ghee, to it add coriander powder and roast it for about 3-4 minutes till the raw smell of the coriander goes away, stirring continuously. Once done, transfer it to a big bowl and let it cool completely. Now to it add powdered sugar, almonds, cashews, and raisins. Mix it well. Dhaniya Panjiri is ready to be served as Naivedyam to Lord Krishna.
We wish all our readers a very Happy Janmashtami . May the love and blessings of Lord Krishna fill your life with peace and happiness.