“Samyabajee” The Newah Ritual and Culinary Culture” Event in Toronto University – Uttam Makaju

इनेप्लिज २०७५ असोज २२ गते २२:४३ मा प्रकाशित

Toronto, Cannadian Newa Guthi recently organized “ Samyabajee: An Evening of Newah Ritual and Culinary Culture” program at Culinaria Research Center of Toronto University. The event was conducted in collaboration with Toronto University, Culinaria Research Center and Robert Ho Family Foundation.

The event was divided into three segments like presentation, demonstration and food taste. The program was started with “Dhime baja”, the popular Newah musical set. Speaking at the first segment of the program Board Director of Robert Ho Family Foundation and Lecturer at Toronto University Department of Historical Studies Dr. Sarah Richardson shed light on the activities of Robert Ho Foundation and expressed her happiness to be able to support the event.

Prof. Dr. Jayeeta Sharma of Historical and Cultural Studies Department appreciated Newa Guthi for involving young generation to preserve culture. She also informed that this event was the first kind of event of Culinaria Research Center working with community organization. Dr. Beatrice Lego of Culinaria Research Center informed that students of the center being given practical experiences.

Mr. Ian Turner, a Ph.D. Student of Newah Buddhism at Toronto University highlighted on the uniqueness of Newah culinary culture. He further explained about his research in Nepal. Guthi President Prakash Pradhan welcomed the guests whereas General Secretary Bimal Shrestha presented the short introduction about the Guthi.

Women and youth members of the Canadian Newa Guthi made presentation about the connection of Newah food and festivals with seasons, nutrition and environment. Ms. Mosuami Tamrakar and Ms. Shreeja Shrestha presented about the food calendar according to the Newah monthly festivals. Guthi’s youth member Ayushna Shrestha presented on the importance of “Yenya “, the Indra Jatra festival’

Guthi’s Vice President Uttam Makaju explained about importance and connection of “Samya Bajee’ items with seasons, nutrition, health and festivals. He further elaborated that “Samya Bajee” as complete set of balanced diet including carb, protein, vitamins, fiber, calcium and so on.

In the second part of the event, women members of the Guthi demonstrated the cooking procedures of various items of “Samyabajee” set. Among them “Chatamari” the rice flour pancake was demonstrated by Sumitra Shrestha and Shreeja Shrestha, “Wo:” the lentil pie was demonstrated by Anu Shrestha and Ayushna Shrestha, “Chhoyala”, the smoked marinated meat was demonstrated by Riddhi Pradhan and Yesoda Shrestha. In the same way, “Aluwala”, the marinated potato was demonstrated by Elvisha Shrestha and Suman Rajkarnikar. “Lakhamarhi” the unique and artistic sweet of Newah heritage was demonstrated by Naresh Tamrakar and Mousami Tamrakar. Guests enjoyed the demonstrations by asking the question during the demonstration.

After cooking demonstration, guests were served the “Samyabajee” a complete set for strengthening immune and digestive system. The set includes more than nineteen items containing carb, protein, fiber, vitamins, calcium and so on. The food were served on “Lapesh”, the stitched sal tree (Shorea Robusta) leave, the traditional way of Newah culture in tune with the environment.

A guest of the event , who was served the “Paun” the Nepalese Hog Plum Soup mixed with black salt and asafoetida during the full course, felt amazed with the taste and remarked that Newah food culture is really scientific. Another guest was also impressed with the last item of the serving of fruit desert like white radish, cucumber, orange, and yogurt remarking as a completely balanced set.

“Samyabajee” is distributed specifically during the Yenya festival (Indra Jatra) in Kathmandu which falls in August/September and the belief is that distribution of “Samyabajee” will bring luck and well being.

Guests were entertained with live Newah songs and instrumental numbers. At the end of the program, octogenarian lady of Guthi Ms. Asta Kumari Tamrakar bade goodbye to the guests by distributing “Lakhamarhi”.

Canadian Newa Guthi assumes that this kind of “Samybajee” event in the University premise is the first ever event conducted by Newah community organizations of abroad. Guthi also anticipates that this kind of event will definitely help promote unique Newah culinary culture and heritage among the researchers, academicians and educational institutions.