How exactly the famous Juju dhau of Bhaktapur is made?

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How exactly the famous Juju dhau of Bhaktapur is made? image
Image by Khichikka

The Juju dhau

Bhaktapur thus is such a city that is not only recognized for its fine arts but also juju dhau. Ju Ju dhau is not a common course like any other dish of newa cuisine. Conceivably the fabrication process could have made this dish unique from other dishes.

Though, this sweet, custard-like yoghurt as its name is the king of yoghurts. It tastes so good that it made you crave for it. One can get their cup of juju dhau in any local shop near the Bhaktapur durbar square.

Besides the reason for satisfying taste, the local people beget a lot of dependency on this dish. In a typical newa family, every good deed and wishes starts with a Sagun. And, Sagun never gets complete without dhau i.e. yoghurt.

Plus, this sweet dish is used in almost every ritual of the newar community. Perhaps that’s why there is a huge impact of Juju dhau in the newa living series.

Juju Dhau is more similar to potatoes in sense of going well with other dishes. Since it goes thoroughly with dishes like Chatamari, Bara, Yomari, and more like Samyabaji. Whichever dish you prefer to have,  you can have it along with them. Or, you can have it as a dessert.

How Juju dhau actually is made?

Turning regular milk into this frozen, savoury dish is not an easy task to do. Thanks to the Saiju people who devoted their whole life to make and serving this lavishing dish to us. In such a case, today’s generation could possibly give that much devotion as well as have the patience to create such a magical food.

Choose quality over quantity

Firstly, the curd makers collect qualitative milk from different vendors and then arranged it on fire until it boils. Here, quality matters a lot more than quantity. If they got unqualified milk, then it directly affects the taste of the dhau.

Thus, it seems quite difficult to choose good, qualitative milk for curd makers, since they couldn’t distinguish it from their eyes.

Well, setting the milk on fire doesn’t mean burning them down. Which practically is not possible though. But yes, it means to heat them, until they get boils.

A normal curd supplier or manufacturer uses two of the big dishes like karai to boil the milk. In a busy schedule or large demand like in Swanti, they use more dishes as well as engage more workers to make the curd.

The man from the Saiju clan agitating the milk for Juju Dhau.

The man from the Saiju clan agitating the milk for Juju Dhau.

Moreover, it seemingly took half an hour to get a boil for the amount of milk of 60 litres. In between that time series, a person continuously agitates the milk. So that it couldn’t get burned. On the other hand, another person cleans the clay pot called Kataro. And staged them on rice husks which let the warm boiled milk be warm and fermented.

The clay utensils called Kataro

The clay utensils called Kataro

In the meantime, the wood fire now has changed into a gas fire. From which the curd makers are now getting some relief on obeying their tasks.

The secret of Juju Dhau

When the milk boils, the secret element of the Juju dhau is mixed in it i.e some amount of brown sugar. Yes, Brown sugar, it arose the sweetness in this curd. As a result, we allure the taste of curd and want to have it more and more.

Besides, after adding some sugar, they agitate the milk for a while even though there is no need for it. One can ignore doing this too.

You must have the patience to make Juju dhau

Well, the milk is now ready to be filled in the clay pot. But, the clay pot is not simply fill out at once. As mentioned above, it took as well as tastes your patience more than anything else. Following the same process of boiling milk, four more times allow you to fill a clay pot.

Thus, pouring milk into four steps within the same difference of time ultimately made a pot of curd. After that, the pots are covered with plate-like clay utensils. But before that, the curd maker makes sure it is warm enough and thus adds two or three spoons, maximum of plain curd.

That is then covered with warm sheets that could be of anything. But again, the patience of 5-6 hours prompted in between you and this lushing curd. It is the time that it takes to get freeze.

Pouring the warm milk into the clay pots (Kataro).

Pouring the warm milk into the clay pots (Kataro).

Adding plain curd to the milk.

Add plain curd to the milk.

Covered with plate-like clay utensils.

Covered with plate-like clay utensils.

Covering curd to keep it warm.

Covering curd to keep it warm.

Being ready to be a lavishing curd, Juju dhau.

Being ready to be a lavishing curd, Juju dhau.

Finally, the frozen, moon-liked white-coloured plus, shaped curd stands ready. The presentation of the curd simply not only made you purchase it but also makes you relish it. Nonetheless, unless the other dishes of Newa cuisine, it has no colourful textures but is the most beautiful one.

Notwithstanding, nowadays it is also presented in a plastic cup or casters.


Yes, it is.

No, it isn’t. Comparatively, it is cheaper than other cuisines.

You can get Juju dhau in local shops. You can easily notice the shop which sells juju dhau since they have banners writing availability of Juju dhau.

Yes, there is. At the southern corner of Bhaktapur Durbar Square.


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