About Banaras, Uttar Pradesh

Banaras, also known as Benaras, Varanasi, Kashi is a city on the banks of the river Ganga in Uttar Pradesh, India. It is considered to be the amongst the longest inhabited city in human history dating back to c.800 BCE.

A major religious hub in India, it is the holiest of the seven sacred cities (Sapta Puri) in Hinduism and Jainism, and played an important role in the development of Buddhism and Ravidassia. Several other major figures of the Bhakti movement were born in Varanasi, including Kabir and Ravidas. Guru Nanak visited Varanasi for Maha Shivaratri in 1507, a trip that played a large role in the founding of Sikhism.

Historically, Varanasi has been a centre for education in India, attracting students and scholars from across the country.

The city of Varanasi grew as an important industrial centre, famous for its muslin and silk fabrics, perfumes, ivory works, and sculpture.

To this day, it is reknowned for its Banarsi Silk Sarges that is a pride of many a trousseau of Indian brides.

In the present political scenario, it is a parliamentary seat contested and won by the current   Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi.

The Cuisine

The city has it own unique food culture – famous for its streetfood eateries that feeds millions of piligrims, its rich culinary style of ‘Benarasi Dum’ cooking, and also ‘satvik food’ – which is diet based on foods in ayurvedic and yogic literature.

This weekend at Daana, we present some unique dishes that are range from simple to exotic to addictive, and you will need to be here to find out which one is which!


Thali Menu


Recipe of the week

Mung ka Halwa

A delicious work of love and stirring!

  • 1 cup Mung Dal or Moong Dal (split- yellow moong)
  • ¾ cup Ghee
  • ½ cup Sugar
  • ¼ tsp Green Cardamom Powder
  • 10-12 nos Almond Slivers
  1. Soak the mung dal in water for 3 hrs or overnight  and grind it in mixie to make a smooth paste, you'll get about 2.5 cups of mung paste.
  2. heat ghee in a large thick base pot and coat the pot well with ghee all over, keeping the flame very low, pour the mung paste in it and stir well.
  3. It may form lumps, but keep keep stirring after every few minutes.
  4. The key to a perfect Mung ka Halwa is in the stirring, it needs continuous stirring, then spread the paste to the base of the pot in a layer in the kadai and let it brown for a while. Then turn it scraping the paste from the base, and spread again to let it become golden brown again.
  5. Keep repeating the process until the mung mixture becomes nicely and evenly golden brown and aromatic.
  6. Add sugar and put off the flame when it is eevenly golden brown. Mix well and cover with a lid and let the sugar melt into the halwa.
  7. Mix well and throw in the slivered almonds. Serve hot.

You may need to sprinkle a little milk or a bit more ghee if the mixture if it has become too dry.