Utkal Divas, also known as Odisha Day, is an annual observance in the Indian state of Odisha, celebrated on April 1 to commemorate the formation of the state. Originating from the historical significance of the region's linguistic and cultural identity, Utkal Divas marks the day in 1936 when Odisha was officially recognised as a separate province, distinct from the combined Bihar and Orissa Province during British rule. As you observe Utkal Divas 2024, we at LatestLY have compiled a list of Odisha cuisine dishes you must try. Utkal Divas 2024, Places To Visit in Odisha: From Chilika Lake to Udayagiri and Khandagiri Caves, Top Tourist Attractions in the State.

Utkal Divas serves as a reminder of the state's unity, diversity, and enduring spirit, inspiring pride and camaraderie among its people as they reflect on their past achievements and look forward to a bright future filled with prosperity and cultural vibrancy. It is celebrated with various cultural events, performances, and ceremonies across the state, fostering a sense of pride and unity among the people of Odisha while reaffirming their commitment to preserving and promoting their rich cultural heritage.

1. Pakhala Bhata

This traditional dish of Odisha consists of fermented rice, known as pakhala, served with water and seasoned with spices like cumin seeds, green chillies, and garlic. It's often accompanied by side dishes like fried or curried vegetables, fish, or fried fish.

Pakhala Bhata (Photo Credits: Wikimedia Commons)

2. Chenna Poda

A popular dessert from Odisha, Chenna Poda is made by caramelising sweetened cottage cheese (chenna) and baking it until it develops a rich brown crust. The result is a deliciously sweet and slightly smoky flavoured cake, often flavoured with cardamom and garnished with nuts.

3. Dahi Baigana

This dish features fried eggplant (baigana) served with a seasoned yoghurt sauce (dahi). The eggplant is typically fried until crispy and then mixed with a tangy yoghurt sauce flavoured with mustard seeds, curry leaves, and spices, creating a flavourful and creamy dish.

4. Macha Ghanta

Macha Ghanta is a traditional seafood dish from Odisha made with a variety of fish and seafood like prawns, crab, and fish heads cooked together with lentils, vegetables, and spices. The mixture is simmered until thickened and flavourful, resulting in a hearty and nutritious stew enjoyed with rice or bread.

5. Dahi Bara Aloo Dum

A popular street food in Odisha, Dahi Bara Aloo Dum consists of lentil dumplings (bara) soaked in seasoned yoghurt (dahi) and topped with spicy potato curry (aloo dum). The dish is often garnished with tamarind chutney, chopped onions, and a sprinkle of spices, creating a delightful blend of flavours and textures.

Odisha cuisine offers a delightful array of flavours and textures, reflecting the region's rich cultural heritage and culinary traditions. From comforting classics like Pakhala Bhata to indulgent desserts like Chenna Poda, each dish tells a story of tradition, creativity, and community. Wishing everyone Happy Utkal Divas 2024.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Apr 01, 2024 12:01 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).