I still have a vague memory of all the three aunts of mine during 1970’s when I was around 6-7 years of age. Those days a Rajasthani wedding ritual will was a 21 days long affair. My grandmother used to stitch traditional Gaghra and choli for me studded with beads and golden laces.
Each days will be reserved for specific rituals and functions. Women members of family of both sides involve themselves in making beautiful patterns with Henna on hands, rub turmeric & chickpea flour on bodies and tie a special ornament called Rakori on their head.
Entire hotel was booked for the members of bridegroom. And girl's side made sure that everyone is accommodated well and is comfortable.
Evening before the marriage when children were anxiously waiting for the Baarat to start to the marriage venue with the live band and the bridegroom riding the horse
The lush green lawns and the artistically decorated lobby with a red carpet welcome to the Baaratis was overwhelming.
I asked my uncle if I can reach the spot early before the Baaratis arrive and the venue become overcrowded.so that I can take a few pictures of the beautifully decorated place. We were the first from the groom's side to arrive.
Entire ground was covered with a colourful Shamiana or tent and had about 60-70 food stalls with authentic Rajasthani cuisines. A small portion from every dish is first presented to lord Vinayaka which is placed in the center of the ground.
These are the food stall for main course. There are traditional curries, Chaat dishes and savories from all parts of Rajasthan. We were literally lost in the sea of delicious dishes and could not make choice as to what to eat and what to avoid.
A busy flat bread maker with clay hearth or tandoor to bake the breads. Each line of rolled out dough placed on the table represent breads from different parts of Rajasthan. There were Missi rotis, channa daal rotis, corn breads, Jowar rotis, Khasta rotis, Rabadi ke malpue, Mawe ke kachori........phew.....
You choose the flat bread ball you wish to eat and they bake it instantly for you.
These are the popular Jodhpuri Kachoris, large flat breads stuffed with lentils and spices and deep fried before breaking into smaller pieces and fried again...sheer indulgence.
This dessert was quite new to me, I was informed that this is made with fresh cream and mango puree. The dessert needs to be kept on large slab of ice. Yum is the other name for this dessert....
Close family members with colourful lehengas and decked up in traditional precious jewellery are ready to welcome the arrival of Baaratis.
Kamarband (wrist band), Kandora, Baju band (arm band) and Rakoris (head gear) are the most important Rajasthani jewellery worn by women during important functions. These are gold jewellery which are passed from one generation to other during marriages.
I could not take more pictures as the Baaratis arrived at aounrd 10.30 PM and the venue was completely taken over by the colourful and noisy Baaratis, shouting, dancing and making merry.
After eating dinner children were exhausted and felt sleepy. Mom asked if we could leave before the ceremony starts as I had to leave Udaipur the next day.
The actual marriage ceremony starts late in midnight and goes on till the wee hours of morning.
I don't have pictures of the sacred rituals performed late in night of the latest marriage I attended.
Here is a file picture of my brother's marriage in 2004 from my album, offering prayers to fire God, one of the many rituals performed during marriage.
Fire god plays atmost important role and the entire marriage ceremony revolves around taking vows and performing homams it.
A file photo from the year 2004 of me and my son at my brothers' marriage. One thing which still pinches me is that I could not wear traditional Ghagra chunri on my brother's marriage. I had just delivered my daughter and was not comfortable wearing the heavy attire.
Papad ki subji, dry fruit chutney methi dana subji, gatte ki subji, Missi roti, Moong dal halwa, Gewar, Rabdi, Jodhpur Kachori are some popular dishes without which any wedding is incomplete.
Here is a recipe for Motichoor Ladoos we often make during festivals, wedding ceremonies and to celebrate other important days in Rajasthan.
Moti choor Ladoos are different from the usual Besan ladoos, the Boodis (chickpea flour balls) prepared for the former are smaller in size and look like pearl, hence the name Moti which means pearl in Hindi.
The recipe looks intimidating though it has very few ingredients in it. You just need to master the technique to get the correct consistency for the batter for making Boondis and the recipe is effortless.
- 1 cup Chickpea four or Besan
- 1/2 cup water
- Oil to deep fry
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup water
- 3-4 cardamom pods
- A pinch edible orange food colour
- Crushed pistachios
- Slivered Almonds
- Rose petals