Celebrations in Bangladesh and Food

Imagine you in your home on Eid Day morning. Everyone returned from Eid Prayers, getting ready for the day-long celebrations. What is the first thing you think of? We can make a cultured guess that you might just go to the kitchen to look at the plethora of delicious food your mother has been preparing since the day before. That is one of the many instances of our social, familial, and national culture entwined with food. Festivals are also synonymous with our culture. The Bangla saying goes “Baro Mashe Tero Parbon” which means 13 festivals in 12 months. That is how festivities are ingrained in our cultural spirit.

Bangla Culture is an old one and its festivals have a lineage that dates back to the start of the Indo-European civilization. The Mughals, The European Merchants, and of course the English Rule made significant contributions in changing the overall food culture. But the “Bangaliana” remains the same. Whenever we celebrate anything of national, religious, cultural significance we celebrate with food.

Let’s take a journey through festivals and food of Bangladesh and see how things have changed in both perceptions and observance of our festivals.

Bangla New Year

The quintessential Bengali celebration is the Bangla New Year or the Pohela Baishakh. This is the celebration of the beginning of the Bengali New Year on the first day of the first Bengali month, Baishakh. This has been a festival since the days of Mughal Emperor Akbar and has been observed with pomp and splendor ever since. Ilish Fry with Panta Bhaat is the signature dish that people love to eat. Many variations of Bharta (mash of potatoes, dried fish, beans etc.) is also one of the staples of this time. The Baishakhi Mela or fair is a yearly gathering where music, small rides, and of course many types of food are on sale in specific places. Although this tradition is fizzling out in the urban areas, the Baishakhi fair is a regular fixture in the rural and suburban areas. Many types of sweets like muri murki, jilapi, and street food like fuchka are sold to the public in these fairs. The Ramna Batamul and the Dhaka University Charukala institute area are the two places in Dhaka that still arrange something resembling a Baishakhi Fair. You can find variants of street food along with Baishakhi sweets here. Baishakhi Festival infuses culture with food in such a way that we are able to preserve our culture every year.

Ramzan Time Food

Probably one of the most spiritual months of the whole year is the month of Ramzan. In this month, Bengali Muslims fast during the day. They keep bad thoughts and bad intentions at bay. Also, they refrain from food and water. At Iftar time they break their fast. Because people have fasted during the day, they look for special and vibrant mixes of food in the iftar time. Piyaju, Beguni, Halim almost become a regular fixture in daily iftars. Then there is also a host of drinks like isop guler bhushi, labang, sharbat made from Gur, lacchi, borhani etc. which quench the thirst of the fasting populace. Iftar hubs within the city become crowded because of the unique taste they provide. Fruits like dates, watermelons, apples, and oranges also adorn the iftar table. The whole family sits and waits for the maghrib azan. Ramzan truly spells the time of strengthening spiritual, familial, and societal bonds. And, food plays a major role in doing just that.

Eid Celebrations

After a whole month of spiritual strengthening, people across the country rejoice in Eid-ul-Fitr Celebrations. This along with Eid-Ul-Adha are two of the largest religious festivals in Bangladesh. After the month of Ramzan, Eid-ul-fitr is a celebration after a whole month of restraints from all consumption and purification of thoughts. Eid Day preparations start from the moment the Eid moon signals the day. A storm in the kitchen ensues. Payesh and Shemai preparations are on the way. Children peek in the kitchen asking for a taste test. On the Eid Day Khichuri, Polao, Beef-chicken-mutton dishes along with salads adorn the table. The men of the house perform ghusl, dress up, and eat something sweet before going for prayer, because it is sunnah. When they return from their prayer, the whole family sits together to have an eid feast.

Eid-ul-Adha is a bit different. This Eid symbolizes the sacrifice of the inner beast within human beings. We sacrifice domestic animals like cows, goats to symbolize the ending of our inner turmoil or evil in the name of the Almighty. This is also a prime time when the aromas of beef and mutton dishes permeate throughout the homes. Beef Curry, Kalabhuna, Kebabs, Grill, BBQ are eaten in the Eid-ul-Adha season. The sacrificed animals’ meat are donated to the needy people as well. Not only do family members enjoy delicious food, the marginalized people in the society also get a cut of the enjoyment. A prime example of food being the bridge of social harmony.

Peetha Puli and Nobanno Uthshab

Bangladesh is a land of Six Seasons. The climate vibrancy is unlike any other country in the world. Our food habits and cravings also correlate with the changing of season. Two festivals that signify the nexus of food and seasons. One is the Nobanno Uthshab. The Bengali Months of Kartik and Ogrohayon make up the season of Hemonto. This is a season when the new paddy is cut and brought to the homes of farmers. This is called the Nobanno Uthshab. The new rice from the new paddy forms the basis of tasty homemade food items. Boiled Rice, Khichuri, Polao and other rice items are made in this festival. But, the most popular item during this festival are the Peethas.

As Hemonto rolls into the winter season, the new rice and other ingredients are used to make a plethora of peethas. Whenever the winter season begins the preparation of peethas begins. Bhapa, Patishapta, Chitoi, many variants of the puli peetha, pakon, tal peetha, tel chitoi are some of the most popular peetha variants that every true bengali enjoys. We are still able to preserve these traditions because of their affiliation with food.

Puja Festivities

The Bangladeshi Hindu community observes many puja festivals during the year. Two of the major Puja festivals are Durga Puja and Saraswati Puja. There are specific food items that are prepared for the Puja rituals. One of the special “Bhog” Item is the Vegetable Khichuri that is a staple of the Puja festivals. Another must-have is a Luchi and vegetable combo during the festival.

The Shift in the Food and Festival Culture

In the last decade or so there has been a visible shift in how we view festivals and food as a culture. Life has become busy and catching up with festivals has become quite a challenge with our hectic metropolitan lifestyles. With limited time in this mechanical life enjoying the flavors of celebration relies on how much allowance the industrial life gives us. But rapid globalization has enabled more flavors to enter our food culture. Famous franchises like KFC, Pizza Hut, Burger King, and more have entered our food vocabulary. Italian, Indian, French, Mexican, Chinese cuisines are regulars among our favorites. Technology has made it possible for us to enjoy the flavors of festivals even from the comfort of our homes. With the advent of online food delivery services, you can enjoy exquisite Ilish fries on Pahela Baishakh at your home even if you had to attend an office event for the whole day, for example.

HungryNaki ushered in the era of online food delivery in Bangladesh. They are the first online food delivery service in Bangladesh who started operations in 2013. HungryNaki celebrates the foods of festivals even now with every major festival, HungryNaki provides their customers with convenient food delivery, vibrant menus, and popular restaurants in every festival season.

As we move on through this digital life, we have to cope with the changes in lifestyle and technology. This became apparent in the global pandemic as we had to depend on online delivery services. But one thing is for certain, festivals and food will always bounce off of each other and provide us a reason to celebrate the Bangladeshi culture.

The History of Spaghetti

The History of Spaghetti: The Pasta Supreme

The world of cuisine and eateries Italian items have a special place. There are quite a few food items that have become international hits. Pizzas have become a staple of fast food that has been adopted by the world’s biggest fast food franchises after hitting the U.S shores. But this one is not the only one. The Spaghetti item is one of the most iconic dinner items that has caught the attention of the world’s foodies. While a new foodie might think, “it’s noodles”, It has a further reaching effect. Let’s see the History of Spaghetti to get an idea of this Italiano Import.

Historical Origins

The Roman Empire became a force that conquered a huge area in the ancient periods. Through war, they came in contact with many types of cultures. One of the cultures they got acquainted with was the Arabic and Mespotamian cultures. In Arabian cultures flour based foods such as “Itriya” were quite popular. As a part of a conquest, the Arab empire managed to take over Sicily at a certain period of time. It became a base for the pasta dishes that eventually became Pasta.

After the first and second world wars, there were many Sicilian inhabitants who immigrated to the U.S. . If you follow the history of some of the most popular foods spread after coming to the U.S shores. Similarly, Spaghetti and other types of pasta also became quite popular. 

Spaghetti Like Many Italian Dishes, Spaghetti was also made popular by Italian immigrants

Textural Origins

Unlike French Fries, the origins of Spaghetti starts from the popular belief. Italian Spaghetti is the alpha version, without a doubt. We in Bangladesh like to label a certain type of dish Pasta. Whereas,  pastas are special flour based food items that exist in Italian cuisine. 

While there are many types of pasta, Spaghetti is special in its size, shape and texture. Pasta in itself may have been brought from China by Marco Polo. Then, the formula morphed into many variations. Spaghetti is one of those variations. In terms of the Spaghetti meaning, the word comes from the Italian word, Spago which means “string”. Unlike the soft pasta variations, its texture is more chewy. 

The originators made Spaghetti especially to be with Tomato sauces and virgin oil. At present, spaghetti goes with vegetables and also meatballs. Meatballs, though, have a special history themselves. 

Currently, January 4th, Spaghetti day is celebrated all over the world. It has become one of the most recognizable Italian dishes in the world. That is true for Bangladeshi restaurants as well. You can order your favorite Spaghetti dishes from your favorite restaurants from Hungrynaki!

Top 10 Grocery Apps in Bangladesh (2021 Updated)

The pandemic has changed a lot of things but perhaps one of the biggest changes is the growth of online grocery shopping in Bangladesh. People now turn to the top 10 grocery apps in Bangladesh when they want to get essentials, snacks, and last-minute emergency items delivered, and going out is not an option. Want to know which apps make our top 10 list? Check them out below!

What are the top 10 grocery apps in Bangladesh?

Our picks for the best online grocery shopping apps in Bangladesh are rated in the table below!

App NameCity
#1 Daraz Online Shopping AllAll 64 districts in Bangladesh
#2 ChaldalDhaka city, except certain parts of Oldtown
#3 MeenaclickDhaka, Chattogram, and Narayanganj metropolitan areas
#4 FoodpandaAll the major areas of 64 districts
#5 PathaoDhaka, Chattogram, and Sylhet Metropolitan Areas
#6 EvalyDhaka and all the major cities
#7 HungryNakiDhaka, Narayanganj, Chittagong, Sylhet, and Khulna
#8 SodaiHutSylhet Metropolitan
#9 OthobaDhaka city
#10 JogaanDhaka Metropolitan

Why are these the best grocery apps in Bangladesh?

These apps are the ones that operate the most widely in Bangladesh from major to remote cities offering delivery services ranging from essentials to household items to even fresh baked goods. Some of these, like Daraz’s dMart have a wide network, multiple payment options, and wide discounts running at all times. Others are relatively new but still offer timely deliveries and are great for ordering when you are in a pinch and need something immediately even if it’s slightly pricier due to delivery charges.

Which Top 10 Grocery App Should You Use?

1. Daraz Online Shopping – dMart

Darazlk Sticker by Daraz Sri Lanka

Daraz Online Shopping is Bangladesh’s #1 e-commerce app which already makes it one of our favorite apps to indulge with our online shopping habit. But as an added bonus, it also provides you with a complete online grocery shopping experience with their signature dMart.

The best part of shopping from dMart is you are guaranteed to get the best prices, discounts, bundle deals, credit card discounts, vouchers, and promotional offers in the country which means if you’re shopping for a family or for the entire month’s groceries, your bill is likely to be slashed significantly.

You also have the option for express delivery with exciting discount vouchers as well as complete quality assurance of the products you are buying. This, coupled with the widespread availability of Daraz in a large number of Bangladeshi cities makes it our best grocery app in Bangladesh!

Top 10 Grocery Apps in Bangladesh

2. Chaldal

Chaldal is a renowned online grocery shopping app for Dhaka, Chattogram, Narayanganj, and Jessore. They have a good assortment from fresh and frozen food to daily staples, personal care, OTC and wellness, and home care and cleaning products. If you’re a regular shopper of Chaldal, you can also avail yourself of some exciting discounts.

Top 10 Grocery Apps in Bangladesh

3. Meenaclick

Meenaclick is based in Dhaka, Chattogram, and Narayanganj metropolitan areas and lets you shop from your nearest Meena Bazar. Along with grocery items you can also shop for other food categories like dairy and beverages.

Top 10 Grocery Apps in Bangladesh

4. Foodpanda

Foodpanda is a great addition to the online grocery shopping space in Bangladesh. It operates in all the major areas of 64 districts of Bangladesh like Dhaka, Chattogram, Khulna, etc. The selection of products includes all your basic grocery needs but also provides some cooked foods from your favorite restaurant too. 

Top 10 Grocery Apps in Bangladesh

5. Pathao

Pathao Tong is an online grocery store app besides its ride-sharing service. Pathao Tong grocery delivery is operating in Dhaka, Chattogram, and Sylhet metropolitan areas. It helps save users from the hassle of going out and delivers all the essentials they might need to their doorstep.

6. HungryNaki

Currently, HungryNaki covers Dhaka, Narayanganj, Chittagong, Sylhet, and Khulna district for food and grocery shopping. Along with quality products and quick delivery service, reliable payment method like cash on delivery is one of the great reason that made HungryNaki popular among the grocery customers of Bangladesh. Moreover, HungryNaki is also the best online food delivery service in Bangladesh.

Top 10 Grocery Apps in Bangladesh

7. Evaly

Evaly provides food and grocery items to customers at their doorstep along with many more products of almost all categories. Evaly Grocery Express gives the customer cash on delivery service on grocery within 1 hour.  You can find any type of grocery in Evaly with minimal effort. 

8. SodaiHut

SodaiHut grocery shopping is operating in the Sylhet Metropolitan area. It’s a local popular grocery shopping platform. You can use SodaiHut app to order grocery in Sylhet. They are doing some good work in terms of customer satisfaction. SodaiHut is also has many varieties of products that you can order if you live in Sylhet city.

Top 10 Grocery Apps in Bangladesh

9. Othoba

Othoba is a reputed e-commerce platform in Bangladesh that has its own online grocery delivery system in Dhaka city. Othoba has a standard delivery system and payment method. Many customers are using Othoba for grocery shopping at a reasonable price.

Top 10 Grocery Apps in Bangladesh

10. Jogaan

Jogaan is a relatively new e-commerce platform in Bangladesh that has its vast grocery items variation along with other category products. However, it is also a Dhaka metropolitan-based grocery shopping platform that is getting popular among grocery shoppers in Dhaka city.

Which of these online grocery apps in Bangladesh do you use the most? Let us know below!
Here are some other things you’ll be interested in reading!

[Previously posted on Daraz Life blog under the “Top 10 Grocery Apps in Bangladesh” title ]

You can also check: Using Voucher Code on HungryNaki