Sarsatia: A Rare and Delicious Dessert from Odisha

If you are looking for a unique and delicious dessert to try, you might want to visit Sambalpur, a city in Odisha that is known for its rich culture and tradition. Sambalpur is home to Sarsatia, an indigenous sweet dish that is unlike any other.

Sarsatia: A Rare and Delicious Dessert from Odisha

Sarsatia (Odia: ସରସତିଆ) is a traditional sweet dish of the western part of Odisha, especially Sambalpur. It is a triangular, layered, and crispy mesh of thin strands that melts in the mouth and leaves a sweet and smoky aftertaste.

Sarsatia Image shared by Odisha Tourism

Sarsatia is made with crushed rice, sugar, and the resin of a tree called Ganjer. The rice is ground using a wooden crusher called Dhenki, which gives it a special flavor. The resin is extracted from the bark of Ganjer twigs, which are soaked in water for several days. The resinous water is then mixed with rice and sugar to form a batter, which is fried in a circular motion to create a mesh of thin and crispy strands. The mesh is then folded into a triangular shape and served as a snack or dessert.

Sarsatia Shared by Prajnanandan Giri

Sarsatia has a mild sweetness and a crunchy texture that melts in your mouth. It can be eaten with milk pudding or curry or enjoyed on its own.

Sarsatia Plate served by Anshuman Rath

One of these shops is Sahu Sweets, which has been making Sarsatia for more than 130 years. The owner, Narendra Nath Sahu, says that he learned the art of making Sarsatia from his ancestors and wants to preserve it for future generations. He says that Sarsatia is not just a food item, but a symbol of Sambalpur's heritage and identity.

Sarsatia shared by Tanaya Patnaik

Another shop that sells Sarsatia is Prabhulal Gupta's shop, where he makes Sarsatia with his own hands using a special technique. He says that making Sarsatia requires skill and patience, and he takes pride in his craft. He says that he hopes more people will come to taste Sarsatia and appreciate its uniqueness.

Sarsatia with tea shared by Nitin Jawale

Sarsatia is indeed a rare and exquisite dessert that deserves more recognition and conservation. It is not only a treat for your taste buds, but also a glimpse into the history and culture of Sambalpur. If you ever get a chance to visit this beautiful city, do not miss the opportunity to have a bite of Sarsatia before it goes extinct.

N.B.: All these images are taken by Liman Chandrakar, Prajnanandan Giri, Tanaya Patnaik, Ansuman RathNitin Jawale, and Odisha Tourism.

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