Makar Sankranti 2021: Enjoy Nolen Gurer Payesh Sans Gluten-Guilt

Here we are sharing a recipe from West Bengal (Makar Sankranti), which is 100 percent gluten-free this Makar Sankranti- nolen gurer payesh.

Somdatta Saha  |  Updated: January 13, 2021 10:55 IST

Makar Sankranti 2021: Enjoy Nolen Gurer Payesh Sans Gluten-Guilt

Makar Sankranti: Nolen Gur is Fresh date palm jaggery which is available only for a limited time

  • Any form of rice is 100% gluten-free
  • Nolen gurer payesh can be a perfect dessert for Makar Sankranti 2021
  • Nolen Gurer payesh takes not even an hour to cook

The never-ending fight between delicious dishes and various health issues has an age-old history. One of such issue is the very prevalent celiac disease. People with this condition cannot eat gluten, as it triggers an immune response that damages the lining of their gastrointestinal tract. Hence, in the present time, we find several people - with celiac disease or not - going for gluten-free options in their menu. Here the question arises, will going gluten-free lessen options from their menu? The answer is no, because every problem comes with a hidden solution to it. And the solution here is replacing the gluten ingredients in a particular dish with gluten-free ones.

The festival of harvest is knocking the doors. The nation is all set to celebrate Makar Sankranti soon, which is also called Ugaadi in Karnataka and Telangana, Lohri in Punjab, Magh Bihu in Assam and Pongal in Tamil Nadu. This festival is synonymous to 'eating'; people from various parts of the country prepare various kinds of foods which remain the most important attraction of the festival. These dishes spell indulgence and hence people look forward to them every year. 

Hence, we are sharing a recipe from West Bengal (Makar Sankranti), which is 100 percent gluten-free. On that note, one of the most important ingredients in the recipe is rice, which is termed to be completely gluten-free. Studies say, all varieties of rice (white, black, brown, red) is gluten free. Asian or sticky rice are termed "glutinous rice" but they are also gluten-free. It is said that the 'glutinous' term refers to sticky nature of the rice and not the gluten protein found in wheat, barley or rye. So indulge in these easy but delicious dishes without any guilt in mind.


(Also Read: Chakli Pitha: This Bengali Crepe Will Melt In Your Mouth In Not Even A Second)

Here's The Recipe -

Gluten-Free Nolen Gurer Payesh (Rice Pudding with Date Palm Jaggery) from West Bengal:

Serving: 4 people

Cooking time: 50 minutes


  • Gobind bhog rice (non-parboiled rice): 50 gm
  • Milk: 1 ltr
  • Date palm jaggery: 150gm (can add more as per taste)
  • Cashew: 20-30gm (crushed: can avoid if you want)
  • Almond: 20 gm (sliced)
  • Ghee: One tea spoon
  • Salt: a pinch (to enhance the taste)


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  • Soak the rice for an hour and rinse it twice/thrice with clean water (do not over-wash). Spread it to dry.

  • Coat the soaked rice with ghee and set aside.
  • Cut the date palm jaggery into small pieces and set aside.
  • Take a heavy pan to boil the milk on medium heat. Once it comes to boil, stir it regularly for 15 minutes on low/medium flame, so that the milk does not stick to the pan.
  • Add the ghee-coated black rice and keep cooking on low heat, till the rice is fully cooked (well cooked rice is when you can mash it with your finger).
  • Switch off the flame and add the jaggery, along with a pinch of salt. Give it a stir and close the lid. Allow the residual heat to melt the jaggery.
  • Pour the payesh in a serving bowl and top it with cashew and almond.

The rice pudding (nolen gurer payesh) is ready to be served. You can have it hot or cold, as per your preference. Just remember, if you don't find gobind bhog rice, kalijira or jeera samba varieties will also do well as alternatives. Enjoy!


(This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.)

About Somdatta SahaExplorer- this is what Somdatta likes to call herself. Be it in terms of food, people or places, all she craves for is to know the unknown. A simple aglio olio pasta or daal-chawal and a good movie can make her day.

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