Bihu is the most beloved and festive harvest festival celebrated in the northeastern state of Assam, India. The celebration encompasses music, dance, cultural performances, and of course, delicious culinary delights. The festival is divided into three different occasions – Rongali or Bohag Bihu, Kongali or Kati Bihu, and Bhogali or Magh Bihu. Out of all the festivals, Rongali Bihu or Bohag Bihu is the most grandiose and elaborate one.
The fiesta brings people together to celebrate the bountiful harvest season and offer thanks to the gods for the harvest. Bihu is incomplete without aromatic, bold flavors, and signature sweets that depict the state’s ethos and serve as an essential part of the tradition. We have got you covered with the five most scrumptious sweets that you cannot afford to miss during the Bihu celebrations.
Pitha is a must-have sweet and savoury delicacy during Bihu. Pithas are rice flour dumplings prepared with sweet and savoury stuffing. It is steamed or fried and served with ghee or curd. Various types of pithas like til pitha, narikol pitha, ghila pitha, and xutuli pitha are available in the market. Pithas are associated with winter since they are primarily made during Bhogali Bihu.
Larus are small, round, and bite-sized sweets made by kneading a mixture of ground sesame seeds or khua, rice flour and jaggery. These sweets melt in your mouth and leave you asking for more. Unlike various other sweets, Larus are not restricted to a specific Bihu, and you can indulge in them all year round.
Narikol Laru or coconut laddoos is another quintessential sweet during the Bihu festival. These bite-sized treats are made by combining coconut, sugar, and a pinch of green cardamom powder. Narikol Laru is a perfect blend of sweet and nutty flavors that will leave an aftertaste on your palate, making you indulge in one too many.
Kesa Mithoi is a sweet and sour blend of rice flour, coconut water/milk and grated coconut. It is sweetened with jaggery and flavored with cardamom and with a dash of camphor. The beautiful golden color of the sweet comes from turmeric. Kesa Mithoi is consumed primarily during Rongali Bihu.
Chira Doi or beaten rice and curd is a traditional Assamese breakfast dish that doubles up as a dessert during Bihu. It is considered the perfect sweet dish to beat the summer heat. Chira Doi is made by mixing beaten rice or poha with sweet curd and garnished with fresh fruits and nuts.
Bihu is the soul of Assamese cultural heritage and these sweet delicacies are an integral part of the festivity. Enjoy these sweets while celebrating the harvest and take in the collective joy of the people of Assam during Bihu!