A bunch of a hundred flowers can be either soaked in water overnight or boiled in a covered vessel.
By Kuhoo Gupta
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and several other top leaders suggested cancelling all Holi Milan events as India saw a sudden spurt of the novel coronavirus. It is a humble appeal to all the parents to avoid sending their children out in mass gatherings. However, the main concern is to celebrate the festival by ensuring a hygienic Holi at home.
Earlier, the colours of Holi were created from blooming spring flowers. To yield different shades, experts used to dry the petals of vibrant flowers in shade and crush them to obtain the fine powder. The season is also popularly known to be a spring festival and the flowering of palash and Holi both align with spring. So the petals of palash, roses and many other flowers like amaltas (Cassia fistula), marigold or gainda (Tageteserecta), yellow chrysanthemums, black babul (Acacia arabica) can be incorporated to make different colours at home.
Procedure to create Holi powder with flowers
Any colours can be created, but since Holi mainly signifies red or saffron (gulal), which represents fire to reflect the essence of beauty, ritual and tradition, it is known to be highly auspicious. Dry the petals of red rose or palash (or any other flower) in the sun and after they become crisp dry, they can be powdered in a mixer and a little flour can be added to increase the volume. Red hibiscus can be dried in the shade and blended to a powder consistency.
Red wet Holi powder: A bunch of a hundred flowers can be either soaked in water overnight or boiled in a covered vessel. After the procedure, strain the water through a net strainer in a different bowl; you can press the flowers with your hand to get the moisture out. The coloured water can be used to play or mixed with more water in the bucket for a larger quantity. You can have your children fill this in balloons or cannons.
For green colour, you can use various green leafy vegetables to get a deep shade. You can make a paste and mix it or boil it with water, strain well and play!
The petals of palash, roses and many other flowers can be incorporated to make different colours at home.
Dry powders with flour and food colours
Seeking a simpler procedure? Take rice flour, add proportionate food colour and mix with two teaspoons of water to make a thick paste. Leave it to dry in the sun and then blend in a grinder to use as powdered colour.
- Rice flour - 1 or 2 cups
- Food colours
- Mixer grinder
- Take rice flour as per the quantity of colour you want to make. Take separate cups for different colours.
- Add water to the cups to make a thick paste like consistency of the rice flour.
- Add food colours to the cups as per your colour choice.
- Mix it to get a uniform colour in the paste.
- Pour it in different plates and lay them in the sun to dry. In a day or two, you will start seeing cracks in that, which means it has dried up.
- Take that dried paste and grind it in your mixer grinder to get it in powder form.
Your homemade natural Holi dry colours are ready to use!
(The writer is a healer, parenting coach and founder of The K Junction)