I’ve never celebrated Diwali in my life but when I think of Diwali, I smile. Why? - because for years now, I’ve seen friends in the food world celebrate Diwali and their celebrations just exude excitement. When I planned out episodes way back in the beginning of 2022, I was adamant that in October, I would learn more about the origins and traditions of Diwali.
Today, thanks to Lopa, I finally get to learn so much more, beginning the the fact - Diwali is not one holiday, it’s a 5 day festival. Each day has different meanings and celebrations and the significance of each day varies widely across the 28 states and 1.6 billion people in India.
Lopa’s joy and enthusiasm for Diwali radiates throughout this entire interview and it’s such a fun, fun listen whether you have your own precious memories of Diwali or if your previous understanding was as superficial and limited as my own. Welcome Lopa and thank you all for being here!!
- 1.6 million people - Who celebrates Diwali?
- The 5 Day Festival of Diwali - what each day represents
- The relationship of Diwali to fall & harvest, brothers and sisters, ancient protection from monsoons, shepherding ancestors home, celebrating good over evil
- Diwali decorations - rice paste painted on colors to show the feet of Lukshmi
- Sugar cane lights
- What is a Diya? & how it differs from a candle
- Why you must soak clay lanterns in water
- Worshipping pujas over the 5 days of Diwali
- Diwali FOOD!!!!
- Lopa's experiences of Diwali in Canada
- The Diwali night she saw the Aurora in Whitehorse, Canada
- Chivda mixture - made with flattened rice
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Lopa's Storied Recipe for Diwali
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