Wednesday, September 30, 2009

538:K C Das

The _______ is a very popular cheese based, syrupy sweet dish that originated in Orissa.It is supposed to have been a traditional Oriya dish for centuries. Arguably, the best _______ in Orissa are made by the Kar brothers, the descendants of a local confectioner, Bikalananda Kar, in the town of Salepur, near Cuttack.Another variant of this dish that is made in the town of Pahala, located between the cities of Bhubaneswar and Cuttack, is also very popular locally. One theory pinpoints the origin of the _______ to the town of Puri in coastal Orissa, where it is a traditional offering to the Hindu goddess, Lakshmi, the consort of the Puri temple's main deity, Jagannath. In fact, it is an age-old custom inside the temple to offer _______s to Lakshmi in order to appease her wrath for ignoring her, after the commencement of the annual chariot festival.The recipe for making _______ eventually made its way from Orissa to neighboring West Bengal. This was during the Bengal renaissance when brahmin cooks from Orissa, especially from Puri, were routinely employed in richer Bengali households. They were famed for their culinary skills and commonly referred to as Ude Thakurs.As a result, many Oriya delicacies got incorporated into the Bengali kitchen. It is widely believed that in 1868, Nobin Chandra Das of Bagbazar, Kolkata, modified the original recipe to extend the shelf life of the highly perishable sweet and make it marketable.Nevertheless, Das earned the sobriquet, "_______'s Columbus" within local circles. His son, K. C. Das started canning _______leading to their even wider availability. These became known as the sponge _______.