15 June, 2021

Sita's Sweet Tooth

Each spoonful of this ethereal delight is steeped in the history of Bengal

Sanjoy Ghosh
Sita's Sweet Tooth
A monumental gate towers over the dusty, crowded streets of Burdwan in Bengal's rice bowl. It's named after Lord Curzon, viceroy at the turn of the last century who attempted to partition Bengal and is still disliked for it. But, to give the devil his due, Lord George Nathaniel Curzon did leave quite a sweet taste in Bengal's mouth. Had he not deigned to visit Burdwan nearly a century ago, we might never have known the delights of sitabhog and mihidana. Burdwan is justifiably proud of these two sweets, which are no run-of-the-mill mithais. They're served separately, but complement each other, and absolutely must be had the day they're made—refrigeration is taboo.

Don't get taken in by Burdwan's narrow alleys, dilapidated buildings and overflowing drains. It is actually a prosperous town, thanks to the fertile farmlands that surround and sustain it. It also enjoys a special mystique, not only because its sitabhog and mihidana are much coveted by...

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