Winter’s chief attractions are date juice and date molasses. However, when preparing winter pitha puli, dates and molasses are not combined. Therefore, preparations for date molasses begin in rural Bengal at the start of Hemant.
During this period, gachirs (individuals who collect sap by cutting palm palms) travel from home to home to study the trees and determine which trees to cut for sap. Then, gather razor-sharp shears, small and medium-sized containers, thick rope, lime, etc., for chopping down trees.
The exterior of the earthen pots is treated with lime and sun-dried for several days to gather the juice. Also, at the beginning of winter, prune dead palm tree branches with sharp scissors. The side where the juice will be collected is predominantly triangular.
So that the white portion of the plant’s body is exposed, in kitchens, trimmed sheds are used to construct fences and roofs. Frequently, it is also utilised as fuel. Sap begins to leak from the clipped portion of the tree’s head as winter approaches. The trees are then trimmed daily or periodically (depending on the tree’s age) to gather sap.
The advantage of triangular slicing is that the juice accumulates in the centre as it flows down. In this portion, a bamboo tube is installed so that the juice can collect in the pot via the bamboo tube.
In addition, two sturdy bamboo kanchis or phials are placed into the plant’s upper edges, allowing the selected pot/pot to be suspended by a rope. For climbing or standing in trees, sturdy and durable ropes are utilised.
Small lengths of bamboo are fastened to the tree at a specific height so that it is simpler to ascend to the top. And in order to hoist and lower the juice pot, the Gachis suspend a bamboo ring from a rope behind their waists. He climbed the tree in the afternoon and hung the empty pot on the ring before returning in the morning with the pot filled with juice.
After midday each day, he removed the tree’s bark and hung empty pots, which lasted till dusk. Once more, the full juice pot was carried down in the morning. Typically, sap collection vessels are made of clay. After gathering juice from these containers, they must be washed daily and dried in the sun to prevent infestation by insects or fungi.
A typical and charming picture of the rural township is the gachids gathering on the tops of palm trees in the sweet afternoon sun of winter and dropping their sap bones in the misty dawn.
Winter necessitates the preparation of numerous pitha-puli at home. Date-soaked dhupi pitha, dhupi pitha, chitai pitha, oil-coated pitha, and date-juice pies. Date palm juice is the most appealing thing on a chilly morning. This juice is used to create all delectable foods. The date palm juice khir is among them. Palm juice khir is popular throughout the nation. But traditionally, the pulp of pabna palm juice is tasty. Since there are numerous palm trees. Date palm juice can be extracted easily. Not only jaggery but also a variety of other foods are rendered greasy with palm juice. Nonetheless, palm juice Khir has been a local favourite for many years.
Who does not enjoy drinking this delectable milk? This palm juice lkhir contains few ingredients. This dish may be prepared rapidly.
Whatever it takes to make
Date juice – 5 kg
Atap rice-1 kg
Raisins – half a cup
Cardamom- 6/7 t
Nuts – for garnishing
How to make
First, wash the rice and soak it for 1 hour. Then break the rice in half by hand. Now cook on medium flame with date juice and all other ingredients in a pot on the stove. Please remove the rice from the stove when it is cooked and thickened. When cold, garnish with almonds and serve to everyone.