KATHMANDU, Jan 10: With a drop in the mercury and arrival of Maghe Sankranti, the demand for molasses has skyrocketed. The entire town of Tokha is now full with the aroma of molasses as businesses go round the clock preparing it to meet the rising demand.
Nepalis celebrate Maghe Sakranti (first day of Magh) by consuming different tuber crops mainly yam and sweet potato. They did so this year too. Normally, people boil the yams in the evening of the last day of Poush and relish them the next morning with ghee and chaku. Generally, sesame seed Laddus, molasses, ghee, sweet potatoes and yam are included in the menu. It is widely believed that the boiled yams taken on the morning of Maghe Sakranti staves off cold-related ailments. People in Kathmandu also celebrate this festival with delicacies made from yam, ghee and chaku. That is why mountains of yams are seen in Kalimati and Balkhu wholesale markets every year during Maghe Sakranti. It has also a cultural and religious importance in Nepali society.