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Relish this traditional Ugadi pachhadi, a mix of flavours



On the eve of the New Year Ugadi celebrated by Telugu and Kannada speakers, the Hyderabad chapter of National Restaurant Association of India (NRAI) held a Ugadi pachhadi mixing event at the Spicy Venue restaurant in Banjara Hills. Ugadi pachhadi (chutney) is an integral component of Ugadi festivities, symbolising a mix of all the flavours one must expect to face in the coming year: sweet, sour, salty, bitter, piquant and spicy hot, signifying happiness, sadness, anger, disgust, fear and surprise. The flavours of the chutney come from a mix of seasonal ingredients like raw mango, pulp of the season’s new tamarind, fresh neem flowers, salt, jaggery and pepper/chilli. All ingredients are raw and no cooking is required.

At Spicy Venue, people joined in to make their version of the pacchadi. Shyam Sundar Vadapalli, corporate chef, The Spicy Venue, explained every ingredient to the non-Telugu participants and explained the process. He said, “To the tamarind pulp, all the ingredients are added in small proportions, to balance every flavour. As a result, one can taste the sweetness, tanginess, and hotness of chilli powder and bitterness from the neem flowers. One can add ripe diced banana or sugarcane pieces and other ingredients like roasted gram dal to add a bite to the gooey or liquid mix. ”

T Sampath, owner of Spicy Venue and chapter Head NRAI (Hyderabad) explained that the pacchadi is slightly thick and not runny. Sampath said, “The basic ingredients like raw mango, tamarind pulp, neem flowers, jaggery etc remain constant. Adding a banana or an ingredient like roasted gram dal is optional and depends on what recipe each household follows.”

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