Simple dishes to ring in Ugadi

Simple dishes to ring in Ugadi

Mangoes are the main ingredient in dishes prepared in households during this festive season.


Ugadi, the New Year’s Day for the people of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Telangana, is here.

It is the mark of the first day of the Lunar New Year. This joyous occasion brings together family and friends of the Kannada and Telugu households,
celebrating with bevu bella the bitterness and sweetness of life.

Apart from celebrating the new beginnings, this time of the year is also much-awaited for the delicacies prepared.

Obattu/holige, mavinakayi chitranna (raw mango rice), mango pachadi etc. are some of the specific dishes prepared for the festival.

Metrolife spoke to a few Bengalureans celebrating Ugadi to get some insight into what the festival and its food mean to them.

Nayantara says that they try to cook something seasonal, “We make food with mango as the main ingredient, either seekarane or mavinakayi chitranna.”

Apart from the usual obattu/holige with holige saaru, and chitranna, some households also feast on a traditional south Indian meal, which includes payasam, aambode, kosambari.

The festival at Nishant Srinivas’s house has influences of both Andhra and Karnataka. Their Ugadi menu also includes pachadi and mango chutney.

Talking to Metrolife, he shares that people forget to relish the good food even during the festive season as they have become health conscious, “If you have everything in limits and are happy, you will be fit and healthy.”

The preparations

To begin the new year afresh, the preparations for the festival like cleaning the house and cutlery, shopping start a week in advance if it is a big household.

The food is cooked either one day in advance or on the same day. Nayantara notes that if there are too many sweets involved they start early.

The tradition

Ugadi falls at the beginning of the Chaitra month of the Hindu calendar, coinciding with the arrival of the mango season. Symbolising it, a string of mango and neem leaves is hung to the frame of the main door or the door of the puja room. Oil bath, new clothes, offering prayers to the Gods are part of the celebration. Since it is the first day of the Kannada/Telugu new year, a puja is offered to the panchangam (almanac) as well.

Serving bevu bella (a mixture of neem and jaggery) is considered the most important tradition of Ugadi.

Shares Nayantara, “We start sharing bevu bella in the evening; that’s when our family and friends visit, it is something that we look forward to. As a tradition, we also catch a glimpse of the moon that night.”

Mango Chutney


- Raw Mango, 2 nos

- Dry red chilli

- Mix of cumin, fenugreek, mustard and fennel seeds, 1/2 teaspoon.

- Crushed jaggery

- Vegetable oil, 1 tablespoon

- Ginger, small piece

- Chilli powder, 1/4 teaspoon

- Salt for taste


- Grate the raw mangoes, and keep it aside.

- Heat oil in a pan. Add the mix of seeds and red chill, and saute it. Add a small piece of ginger.

- Add the grated mango to the pan with some chilli powder and a pinch of garam masala.

- Stir for a few minutes and add the crushed jaggery and salt as per taste.

- Cook for few more minutes until it reaches the right consistency.

- Remove it from heat and store the chutney in a jar. 


Recipe credit: Nishant Srinivas