Report by Rtn. PP Mukund Chiplunkar
31st August 2023
After weeks of learning Malayalam language through audio lessons and few meetings focusing on the theme of Kerala state and its culture, when Onam arrived at the end of August, it was quite natural to plan a celebration based on the grand feast of Onam Sadhya.
It was decided during a zoom call of August Sarathis that a three-member team including admin director will go around various restaurants nearby to check availability of appropriate food items and preparations for this purpose. accordingly, Madhav, Mohan and Mukund went around eating joints to check availability of items, rates and space for all the club members to come together enjoy Onam sadhya. after visiting and sampling food at a couple places and talking to a couple of caterers, the team zeroed down on The Sea Secret in R Deccan Mall, first floor. after we explained the purpose of our visit and impressed on owner the efforts taken by club members to get a feel of Malayali culture, the owner readily agreed to host all the club members at a reasonable price and offer maximum items of food on the occasion of Onam Sandhya.
In keeping with the theme of the month, which was Kerala state, dress code of common wear in that state was chosen. Almost 60 people registered for the gala dinner.
The Sea Secret also decorated their front hall with a tall brass samai, flower decorations etc. Hotel Management was screening various documentary films showing the life and festivals of Kerala on the TV screen in the centre of the hall. All the people assembled by 7:30 pm. Almost all ladies wore Kerala saree. A few gentleman chose to wear dhoti or lungi. After people had arrived and everyone was seated, a banana leaf was placed in front of them. The Onam Sadhya is an elaborate preparation with almost 28 traditional items. Majority of them are to be eaten using rice as a staple food. However people were also served with Appam and harbhara usal. This was followed by a serving of RICE, Rasam SAMBAR, Avial and payasam in the end. Everyone enjoyed thefeast and relished all the tasty preparations with multiple servings or portions of their choice. The dinner lasted almost an hour and a half. There were many photo sessions. AG Rotarian Vasavi Mule also attended the dinner and enjoyed it immensely.