The people of Kerala form a well educated and mature society. Keralites are popularly called 'Malayalees' for the language they speak (Malayalam). The women mostly dress themselves in those wonderful six meters of silk / cotton called 'saree'. The men mostly attired to trousers and shirts like the rest of the world. However you should not be surprised if you find them dressed in the traditional 'Mundu' at home.
The Hindus account for nearly 60% of the population. The rest of the 40% is
almost equally divided between the Christians and Muslims.
Malayalam, the local language is considered to be a very complete language
it has 56 alphabets and many more vowels, making every word and accent in
the world easily pronounceable to the Malayalee. English is well understood
and is taught in schools and colleges.
BREAKFAST Puttu : ( A kind of steam cake made of rice flour and
coconut), customarily accompanied by a spicy curry made of Bengal gram and
fried pappadams, makes for an authentic Malayalee breakfast. Another is
vellayappam ( a pan cake made with a batter of rice flour and yeast) which
goes well with potato stew. Substitute the stew with a meat preparation and
what you have is a filling. From fluffy idlis, crisp dosas, and uppmavu ( a
porridge like dish made with semolina) can be severed with coconut chutney
and sambar with a cup of hot, sweet tea lending a perfect finish to your
morning repast. Keralites are also justifiably proud of their seafood.
Anyone who has experience Kerala seafood will readily agree to its great
variety and racy taste. Fish, prawns, crabs etc. all are always available
and all will find them most palatable .
SADHYA : Steaming hot rice is served on plantain leaves accompanied
by kallan (spiced up curry made of vllarikya and ripe mangoes in butter
milk), Olan (white pumpkins, potatoes, and coconut in a wheyey gravy), and
erisseri (jackfruit in a thick peppery gravy). The dishes are made
predominantly using gourds and pumpkins, mangoes, jackfruit, and coconuts
which are found in abundance during the season. Crisp, fried jackfruit
fingers and pappadams supplement the typical feast, with payasam made of
rice and milk, ending it on a sweet note
MARRIAGE CUSTOMS : Kerala has evolved through the ages its own
marriage customs and code of morals . The different communities and castes
of Kerala have developed over centuries their own typical marriage
ceremonies. The Hindus belonging to all castes generally compare the
horoscope of the boy with that of the girl and satisfy themselves of their
compatibility before the proposal for the marriage. 'Tali tying' and
presentation of cloth i.e., pudavokoda in South Kerala and pudamuri in North
Kerala have become and essential part of Hindu marriages.
The Christians and Muslims have their own characteristic marriage
ceremonies. The one thing common they have with Hindu marriages is the tall
- wedding badge - tying ceremony. The tali of the Christians is a
cord made out of 21 threads from the marriage cloth or mantrakodi which is
also presented to the bride.
the Muslims, the actual ceremony is called 'Nikkah'. The father of
the bride sit face to face with the bridegroom, clasping each others hands.
The musaliar, the priest, then announces the conditions of the marriage
contract and the bridegroom gives his consent. The mahar or the amount the
bridegroom has agreed to pay to the bride will also then be publicly
announced. The women do not generally take part in the nikkah but they
assemble in ceremony.
Agriculture is the mainstay of the economy . Rice is the staple food of
Keralities. Kerala is unique and probably the only region in the world where
farming is done below sea level.