Let There Be Light!
‘Tis the season to celebrate: Dress fancy. Eat & Dance till you drop. LIGHT.IT.UP! (with diyas of course). No folks, I’m not talking about Christmas or Thanksgiving. It’s DIWALI !!
For those wondering what I’m tripping about….DIWALI aka festival of lights, is an Indian holiday. It’s the year’s biggest & brightest celebration, marked by lit, colorful votive lamps: diyas. There’s larger than life fireworks & gift exchanges. Think Christmas meets July 4th.
Diwali is a celebration of victory: of good over evil, with light washing over dark. I personally think it’s a celebration of hope – of all good things to come.
When you have a festival of this epic-ness, it’s incomplete without food. I know folks like to get dressed up fancy, but let me tell you, BRING YOUR SWEATPANTS! Allow me to explain the Diwali equation:
Infinite food buffets + mouth watering delicacies + Indian hospitality
(“What do you mean you just ate? You only had 3 helpings!”)
= Deadly Exploding Pant Syndrome (DEPS)
Symptoms include heavy breathing, drooling & light headedness induced by food coma. At it’s peak, one eats so much, one’s pants simply explode, resulting in embarrassment that cannot be undone. There is no known scientific cure for DEPS. Only two treatments exist:
a) Don’t wear pants b) Have a back up plan to get home.
This is my ride home this year.
In trying to set the stage here, I might have derailed off topic completely. Let me attempt a comeback. We’re talking Diwali food: there’s nothing quite like Diwali DESSERTS!
This year, I’m combining my love of Western fall foods with a classic Indian dessert. Payasam, is a South Indian dessert, a milk pudding infused with cardamom, nutmeg & pistachios. Its beauty is in its rich flavor paired with simple ingredients. It’s versatile enough to work with vermicelli noodles, tapioca or even carrots. I figured why not Pumpkin?
Here’s my take on what happens when an Indian classic dessert meets a Western fall staple. Prepare to fall in love!
Also published on Medium.