Our Guarded Golu

Today is the first day of Hindu festival Navrathiri(9 nights of festival), also called as the festival season of Dussera(end of navarathiri or the 10th day).Since I grew up in Tamilnadu, my family had the tradition of keeping bommai golu(story telling through toys/dolls) to celebrate the victory of good over evil.The entire story of navrathiri can be found here.

Usually, the dolls are kept in tiers(called as padis in tamil), each tier will represent some aspect of life- stories of gods and goddess, events that happen in day to day life,places like zoos,parks, grocery shops will also shown through dolls.My sister and I will be planning for days for navrathiri when we were young, as that was an excellent opportunity to show our creativity and imaginations through the way we decorated the toys at home.My sister was an excellent kolam(rangoli)artist and she would draw some natural scenes or animals in front of the golu.

This year though with lil R crawling all over the place, our golu became the most guarded item of the house. See it for yourself :) N thought of the idea of guardrailing the golu!!

The first two tiers consists of deities and the last tier has the hand made beadwork toys made by my grandmother- these toys are about 60-70 years old. It consists of a setting of a home with a cradle, well,chairs, wedding orchestra, kitchen and gas stove(I am told gas stove was just bought at home at that time and it was a craze).The golu also has two wooden toys called marapachi(the bride and groom),carved out of wood and is a must for every doll display.

And the offering for golu? Sundal, ofcourse!!
Sundal is made with beans(kidney beans,garbanzo, black eyed peas, peas etc). The offering today at home was black eyed peas sundal and this is how I made it.

Black eyed peas- 1 cup
Salt- 3/4 tsp
Tuemeric powder- 1/2 tsp
Mustard seeds- 1/2 tsp
Cumin seeds-1/2 tsp
Urad dal- 1/2 tsp
Curry leaves- few
Dried red chili-1
Hing- 1 pinch
oil- 1 tsp
Coconut- 4 tbsp

Soak the dried beans in water over night. Pressure cook the beans the next day. Drain and discard the blackish water.Heat oil in a pan, add hing and mustard seeds.When the seeds splutter, add cumin seeds, curry leaves, urad dal, red chili and stir fry for a minute. Add the cooked beans,salt and turmeric powder and stir fry for 2-3 minutes.At the end, add the coconut and mix well.Switch off. Offer it as a prasad to the golu/deity first before tasting.

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16 Comments to “Our Guarded Golu”

  1. sayantani says:

    this is what happens in my family too. its difficult to keep toddlers away from anything. give us a bigger picture of your grandmom’s dolls. they must be exquisite looking.

  2. Nice golu and delicious recipe…

  3. Priti says:

    Beautiful Golu setup …and sundal looks yum

  4. indosungod says:

    Happy celebrations Sowjanya. I love the guarded golu :)

  5. Hyma Bala says:

    lovely golu and sundal…:-) guarding it is the best way given ur lil kid playing around :-)

  6. That’s funny S to guard golu, but totally makes sense and I can understand. The sundals look great, happy navaratri to you too :)

  7. Priya says:

    Beautiful golu, sundal looks excellent and nutritious..

  8. Cham says:

    U don’t have the Chettiar Bombai? So each year, they increase the padi right?
    Sundal is yummy with black eyed peas. I can’t hear u singing….

  9. Padma says:

    Happy Navarathri to you S and family. How is the little one doing?. Can the see how you have guarded :)

  10. Srivalli says:

    Happy Navarathri!..Golu looks great..:)..I know how much fun the lil ones will have!

  11. PJ says:

    Happy Navrathri. Golu looks nice and I can totally relate to your situation :).
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  12. Raks says:

    LOL so so sweet :) I appreciate that you took effort to keep the kolu in a guarded way 😉 Hope you all are doing fine!

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  15. rani says:

    Nice and beautiful Guard Golu, i too have my grand ma’s times dolls,they are so precious.Sundal recipe is delicious!

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