Yomari: Symbol of completeness


Being complete is a bliss. And Nepal’s traditionally unique food Yomari — fig-like bread made of rice flour, sesame seed, and chaku (molasses) — is the symbol of completeness. The festival in which this delicacy is prepared — Yomari Puni — symbolises blissful period of harvest. Every year on Mangsir Shukla Purnima, as per the lunar calendar, Newar community celebrates Yomari Puni, also known as Dhanya Purnima. This year it was celebrated on December 25.

The celebration

Yomari Puni is celebrated by Newar community with much joy. Jyapu (farmer) community of the Valley also celebrate Jyapu Diwas on this particular day. This year, it was the 12th edition of the Jyapu Diwas. To mark the day, the members of Jyapu community — residents of 32 different tole (locality) of Kathmandu — participated in the rally wearing traditional Newari dresses along with troupes playing traditional music.

Anish Maharjan from Bhimsensthan, one of the participants of the rally, shared, “It is an honour to be a part of

this rally celebrated once a year where you get to eat delicious Yomari. This day is also the day to unite with friends and family.”

How to make it

• Fry sesame seeds and grind it without making it powder. Now melt the molasses in water and sieve the molasses in a cloth to separate any foreign material. Then mix the sesame seed and molasses well.

• To make the dough, boil the water and add 50 gm of rice flour. Then stir gently until it is sticky and thick. Now add the remaining flour to the mixture and make dough until it’s smooth and soft. Cover the warm dough with a clean cloth or keep it in a hot case. The dough ought to be warm throughout the making process. “Or else Yomari will crack and break.”

• Take a small amount of dough, using your index finger to create a hollow. Length of that dough should be six inches and slight thickness should be maintained on remaining dough surrounding the hollow. After that pour one-and-a-half spoon of the stuffing and gently close the opening of the Yomari. Steam the raw Yomari for five to 15 minutes and it’s ready to serve.“You can also add other stuffing like paste of green gram or black gram or khuwa (dairy product).”