Those familiar with the traditional Mappila songs of Malabar may have noticed the word 'musara' in their lyrics. Many of the songs are meant to be odes to the culinary versatility of Malabar and describe in great detail the ingredients, appearance, and flavour of the A-listers in the cuisine. 'Musara' is one such dish, the praise of which is sung in many a song, though most of it would be lost even on Malayalis from other parts of Kerala, thanks to the quirky dialect.
Traditional recipes are sadly lost when generations move on to a different food culture. There may not be many people around even in North Kerala who would know what 'musara' is. A special Malabari pudding made of Bengal gram and coconut milk, it used to be one of the attractions on the menu of feasts during the fasting month. As times changed, the fasting-special dishes lost their exclusivity and began doing the rounds as and when someone fancied making some. Musara, too, makes rare appearances like that – at dinners, on cookery shows or blogs, and quite unexpectedly, at Eid or Ramadan.