Makara Sankranthi is a widely celebrated festival in different parts of India. On this day, Lord Surya or Sun is worshiped. It is also celebrated as a harvest festival in many parts of India. On this day, Sun begins his journey to the Northern Hemisphere, most commonly called as Uttharayana. As with all other festivals, this festival also has many legends, two such commonly told legends are:
1. Lord Surya or Sun visits Shani on this day.
2. Bheeshma Pithamaha, who was able to choose when he will die, chose this day to end his life.
The house is cleaned, and decorated with fresh green mango leaves tied as thorana to the front door. Beautiful, and colorful rangoli is drawn at the front of the house. After performing the pooja, yellu(Sesame seeds) and Bella(Jaggery) is offered to God. Usually it is prepared by mixing Till, finely chopped Jaggery, roasted groundnuts cut into small peices, with finely chopped dried coconut, and Putani, also called as Hurigadale.
I have added the recipe to make Yellu Bella here.
They also prepare Sakare Acchu for this festival. And the combination of Yellu, Sakkare Acchu and Sugar cane, Bananas are disrtibuted to Married Ladies.
Most dishes prepared during this day are made out of Yellu or Sesame seeds and Rice. It is also tradition to prepare Sweet and Khara Pongal during this festival. The recipes are posted here in the blog and are attached below for your convenience:
And you can find various Rangoli designs here: