Rama Navami Naivedyam Recipes: Vada Pappu, Panakam, Chalimidi

Sri Rama Navami (April 15, 2016, April 4, 2017) is the festival that celebrates the birth of Sri Rama. It also marks the end of Chaitra Navaratri, which starts with Ugadi.

In Andhra Pradesh, the traditional Sri Rama Navami naivedyam includes:

For a variation, you could try Carrot Kosambari instead of Vada Pappu. 🙂

In Andhra Pradesh, the Sree Seetha Ramachandra Swamy temple at Bhadrachalam is the centre of some glorious celebrations. This is a temple constructed by Kancharla Gopanna who was popularly known as Bhakta Ramadas, who was a also a great composer.

You can listen to some beautiful renditions of Ramadasu Kritis at http://www.bhadrachalarama.org/ramadasukeerthnaas.html

Shree Rama Rama Rameti
Rame Raame Manorame
Sahasranaama Tat Tulyam
Raama Naama Varaanane||

Carrot Hesarubele Kosambari – Carrot and Mung Salad – Rama Navami Special

Kosambari is a traditional naivedyam for Rama Navami which heralds the end of Chaitra Navaratri. I have already written about the traditional Kosambari which is made from Cucumber and Moong Dal.

Here is a version of Kosambari made with carrot. I make it often through the summer as it is a light, tangy, crunchy salad.

How to Make Carrot Hesarubele Kosambari

Serves: 2


  1. Grated Carrot – 1 Cup
  2. Hesarubele or Moong Dal – 1/2 Cup
  3. Grated Coconut – 1/4 Cup
  4. Green Chillies – 2
  5. Lemon Juice – 1 tbsp
  6. Mustard Seeds – 1/2 tsp
  7. Curry Leaves – 4 to 6
  8. Oil – 1 tsp
  9. Salt to Taste

The Ingredients for Carrot Hesarubele Kosambari



  1. Soak the moong dal in water for about 1 hour.
  2. Drain all the water from the moong dal.
  3. Chop the green chillies to very small pieces.
  4. Mix together the grated coconut, drained moong dal, grated carrot, lemon juice, green chillies, and salt.
  5. Heat the oil.
  6. Add the mustard seeds.
  7. When the mustard seeds start to crackle, turn off the heat.
  8. Add the curry leaves to the hot oil and mix.
  9. Add the tempering to the Kosambari.
  10. Let the Carrot Hesarubele Kosambari rest for at least 10 minutes.
  11. Serve the Carrot Hesarubele Kosambari as a part of a meal or eat like a salad.

Carrot Hesarubele Kosambari - Moong Dal and Grated Carrot Salad from Karnataka


Pachi Chalimidi (Akki Thambittu) – Naivedyam for Navratri, Rama Navami, Nagula Chavithi, and Other Festivals

Pachi Chalimidi - Naivedyam for Rama Navami, Navaratri, Varalakshmi Pooja, Seemantham
Pachi Chalimidi

Chalimidi is one of those traditional Andhra sweets that is made on almost all auspicious occasions. It is a must on festivals such as Sri Rama Navami, Nagula Chavithi, Sharada Navaratri, and Varalakshmi Pooja. It is also given to a bride to carry to her husband’s home when she goes there the first time and to a pregnant lady at  Seemantham (baby shower).

As I was getting ready for naivedyam for the 9-days of Sharada Navaratri, I realised that I had not written about this simple yet important sweet.

Chalimidi can be made in two ways: Pachi Chalimidi (raw) or Panakam Chalimidi (in a syrup). In this post, I am writing about the former as it is easier to make.

My fellow blogger Srividhya of Vidhya’s Vegetarian Kitchen commented on my post that this particular dish was made in Karnataka as well and was called thembittu there. A bit of search on the internet revealed that this was indeed so and that there were other variations of it made with gram flour and wheat flout as well. The version made with rice flour is called Akki Thambittu.

Thanks, Srividhya for this. 🙂

Do visit Vidhya’s lovely blog for a variety of recipes.

How to Make Pachi Chalimidi or Akki Thambittu

Serves: 4

Time: 30 Minutes


  1. Rice Flour – 1 Cup
  2. Sugar or Grated Jaggery – 3/4 Cup
  3. Grated Coconut – 1/4 Cup
  4. Cardamom Powder – 1/2 tsp
  5. Ghee – 1 tbsp
  6. Cardamom Powder – 1/2 tsp


  1.  Melt the ghee.
  2. Take off the heat and let it cool till just warm but is still liquid.
  3. Add the sugar/jaggery, cardamom powder, and coconut.
  4. Mix well so that the sugar/jaggery starts to melt.
  5. Add the rice flour and mix well till it comes together as a ball.
  6. Shape into one large round ball or multiple smaller balls.
  7. Offer as naivedyam along with Panakam and Vada Pappu.


  • I prefer sugar to jaggery. My pic shows Chalimidi with sugar.
  • You can use pieces of coconut instead of coconut. If you are doing that fry the pieces in the heated ghee till they just start to change color.
  • I have used both store-bought and home-made rice flour with equally good results. Now-a-days, I stick to store-bought flour as I rarely have the time to make rice flour afresh.

Vada Pappu or Kosambari – Rama Navami Naivedyam

Vada Pappu
Vada Pappu

Today, I am presenting the recipe for Vada Pappu, the essential naivedyam for Rama Navami along with Chalimidi and Panakam. Vada Pappu (also called Kosambari in Kannada) is essentially a healthy salad made with soaked Moong Dal, finely chopped cucumber, green chillies and grated coconut. It does not involve any cooking and is made for most poojas in Andhra Pradesh.

This recipe for Vada Pappu is also a weight watchers delight because it is low-calorie, protein-rich and has no oil. I love to have this light-on-the-stomach dish for lunch in Summers.

You could also add some grated carrot to it to make Carrot Hesarubele Kosambari.

How to Make Vada Pappu or Kosambari


  1. Moong Dal/Pesara Pappu – 1 Cup
  2. Grated Coconut – 3 tbsp
  3. Finely Chopped Green Chillies – 2
  4. Finely Chopped Green Cucumber (Khira) – 2 tbsp
  5. Lemon Juice – 2 tbsp
  6. Salt to taste


  1. Soak Moong Dal for about an hour.
  2. Strain completely.
  3. Add Cucumber, Coconut, Chillies, Lemon Juice, and Salt.
  4. Mix well.
  5. Offer as Naivedyam.
  6. Serve to all with Panakam.


  • You can have Vada Pappu as a salad on a hot summer’s day. It is light and filling!
  • You can add bits of raw mango instead of lemon juice.
  • You can use regular cucumber, if you do not find green cucumber.



I always look forward to having Panakam on Sree Rama Navami. This sweet and spicy drink, along with Chalimidi and Vada Pappu, is the traditional naivedyam on Sree Rama Navami in Andhra Pradesh.

Sree Rama Navami is the birthday of Lord Rama and the culmination of Vasanta Navaratri Utsavam that begins with Ugadi. The 9 days leading up to Rama Navami are filled with visits to temples, kutcheris, and various religious activities.

Sree Rama Navami is very close to my heart because the earliest music I remember hearing is Dr. Magalampalli Balamurali Krishna‘s Bhadrachala Ramadasu Kirtanalu. I was fascinated by the depth of emotion these simple kritis conveyed and they were among the first songs I ever learnt to sing. Amma followed this up by telling me the story of Bhakta Ramadasu and taking me to the Golconda Fort to see where Bhakta Ramadasu was imprisoned.

The first dance-drama I ever participated in was based on the Ramadasu kriti Ikshvaku-kula Tilaka and I was Lord Rama in that. In the immediate next item, I was one of many dancing to the song Sayonara! Sayonara! from Love in Tokyo. I made a seemingly effortless transition from Lord Rama to a Japanese Belle! Laughing Smiley

Panakam is very easy to make and has great cooling effect on the body. As a result, you will find Panakam being served at various occasions throughout the summer as a refreshing cooling drink.

How to Make Panakam


  1. Water – 3 Cups
  2. Grated Jaggery – 1/2 Cup
  3. Black Pepper Powder – 1/2 tsp
  4. Sonti/Chukku/Dry Ginger Powder – 1/2 tsp
  5. Cardamom Powder – 1/4 tsp


  1. Dissolve jaggery in water.
  2. Strain the liquid.
  3. Add pepper, cardamom, and dry ginger powder to the jaggery water.
  4. Mix well.
  5. Serve Panakam at room temperature or cold.

You can add 1 tsp lemon juice as well.