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Origin of Sabarimala Aravana Payasam

One of the most important offering made at the famous Sabarimala Ayyappa Temple is the Aravana Payasam. Millions of tinned Aravana Payasam is sold at the temple in year. The demand for payasam in special can increases during the Mandala Makaravilakku season. Origin of Aravana Payasam is attributed to Aravana Rishi.

There are two theories regarding the origin of Aravana payasam. One of the most popular versions is that the offering was first prepared by Sage Aravanan. He made the offering in the temple in the dense forest. In olden days people used to carry dry rice (unakkalari) for cooking while visiting the temple. Dry rice is the main ingredient in the Aravana Payasam. So this theory might be true as people might have started preparing the payasm with minimum ingredients.

Another theory is that ‘Aravanan’ means God and as it is cooked and offered to Ayyappa, the sweet got the name Aravana.

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