Indian Curd-eating Contest Keeps Traditions Alive
Posted on April 24, 2012
In the city of Patna in India’s eastern Bihar state, a curd-eating competition involving more than 300 people took place the day before the sacred Hindu holiday of Makar Sankranti, a Punjabi festival that takes place on the eve of winter solstice.
This competition is as old as India itself. But in recent years, it hasn’t been performed often. It was Sudhir Kumar Singh, director of a curd-making company, who decided to revive this old village tradition.
The competition was held at Arvind Mahila College. Students, faculty, staff and student guardians all took part.
The Provincial minister for animal husbandry and fisheries department distributed the winning prize in this unique contest.
The first-place winner was Dr. Ajay Kumar, a math professor, who gobbled three kilograms (6.6 pounds) of curd (yogurt) in 15 minutes! Other prizes went to the chief librarian, Prita Jha, who lapped up two and a half kilograms (5.5 pounds) in the stipulated time, followed by retired J.D. Women’s College professor Anjana Ganguli, who consumed one kilogram (2.2pounds).
This year marked the debut of the curd-eating competition at the college.
In addition to curd, the menu included a large piece of tilkut, chura, and a spicy vegetable curry, to offset the sweet taste of curd.
Curd has many health benefits, some of which include increasing the body’s capacity to absorb nutrients and minerals from other foods, improving the digestive system, providing calcium for strong bones and teeth, and strengthening the immune system.
So, my friends, the word in Patna, India, is “curd.”