Hayagreeva Maddi is a very famous dessert made with bengal gram/ channa dal and jaggery. It is often confused with the Kamala paruppu payasam or with the Pooranam/ sweet stuffing used to make puli and Modakams. But these are definitely different from both of them. The consistency of this hayagreeva Maddi is more of a halwa and can be scooped with a spoon. Hayagreeva Maddi is a very famous dish among the Madhwa brahmins and in the surroundings of Udupi. This maddi is served in the Udupi temple even today as an offering to God.
The story behind how this dessert became famous is definitely interesting. Being an avatar of Lord Vishnu, Hayagreeva ( The Horse God ) is worshiped for knowledge and wisdom. Lord Hayagreeva has a human body and a horse head. It was said a goldsmith failed multiple times when he tried to make a gold statue of Lord Ganesha. Every time he ended up making a horse headed Idol. In despair, he threw the Idol away. The same night, Lord Hayagreeva appeared in the dreams of Sri Vadiraja and reminded of this incident. Lord Hayagreeva also appeared on the goldsmith’s dream and asked him to become Sri Vadiraja’s devotee. The next morning, Sri Vadiraja met the goldsmith and revived the horse headed Hayagreeva’s Idol from the goldsmith and both of them worshipped it. Since Horse’s loved channa dal/ bengal gram, Sri Vadiraja offered this maddi made with Kadala Bele (Channa dal) and Bellam ( Jaggery ) to Hayagreeva every day.
It is also known that while Sri Vadiraja offered this Maddi to Lord Hayagreeva every day, some mischievous people added poison in the offering that Sri Vadiraja carried to the Lord. Lord Hayagreeva out of the love that Vadiraja had on him, ate the offering knowing it had poison. The white horse headed Hayagreeva immediately turned blue. The people accepted their fault and Vadiraja ordered them to find the special variety of Brinjal in the area and offer it to Lord Hayagreeva. This Hayagreeva Maddi is very famous in many Udupi households and they can be made with the simplest ingredients available in pantry. Try this divine Hayagreeva Maddi and get the blessings of Lord Hayagreeva.
- I have used fresh grated coconut in this recipe. You can also add grated dry coconut too.
- Remove the hayagreeva Maddi when it is still in a halwa consistency. it will thicken as it cools down.
- I have used three table spoons of ghee. You can increase or decrease them.