If there is anything that Odisha Parba 2017 established without an iota of doubt, it is the love of Odias for their traditional cuisine, especially sweets. At the annual festival held in New Delhi last year, thousands lined up to have a taste of the lip-smacking rasogolla and chhenapoda. Those who could get their hands on the delectable sweets were seen drooling over them, while the angst of the anxious queue when stocks ran out had to be seen to be believed. Each day, the karigaras kept increasing the quantity made, only to see them disappear within hours of sale.

While it is a fact that Odias love both rasogolla and chhenapoda with almost a religious fervour, do they have a favourite? What if they were asked to cast their vote in favour of either rasogolla or chhenapoda…would one of them be a clear winner? The rasogolla has been in the news recently over Odisha’s tangle with West Bengal regarding its GI status. The squabble brought to the fore avid Odias who presented ample documentation about rasogolla being a part of the ancient culture of the state since time immemorial. It also demonstrated how fond all Odias are about the sweet which has earned the distinction of being a favourite of the Supreme deity, Lord Jagannath at Puri.

The chhenapoda too occupies an equally important place in the heart of every Odia. Ask any Odia staying outside the state, or even any non-Odia who has ever tasted it, ‘which Odia sweet would you like to have when you visit Odisha’ and the answer would be almost unequivocal – chhenapoda. The simplicity of the recipe along with its heavenly taste puts it way up on the wish list of every foodie.

By the way, which one of these is your personal favourite? Rasogolla or Chhenapoda – if you had to crown one as the undisputed king of Odia sweets, what would you choose?

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