5 World Holidays for the Culture Lover

There is no shortage of colorful and exciting holidays around the world, and there’s no reason why we shouldn’t be celebrating it together with the locals and even our neighbors who come from the countries that observe those festivities. With that in mind, here are 10 holidays from around the world we believe should be on your “Holiday Bucket List” for years to come!

1.) Holi

India’s most popular holiday and one celebrated even in the furthest reaches of the Indian diaspora despite differences in religion, Holi is a spring festival known as the “Festival of Colors” that is meant to symbolize the love between Radha and Krishna, supreme deities within Hinduism. During Holi, celebrants whisk and splash colored powder and liquids on each other, meant to show the colorful romance between the aforementioned gods, and the colors that spring brings now that the winter has passed. Holi is often held in the last days of March.

2.) Songkran

Songkran is celebrated around April 12-15 annually and is known worldwide as the Thai New Year, which has deep ties to the country’s Buddhist heritage. You know it’s Songkran when you’re walking down Bangkok and all of a sudden people splash you with a bucket-load of water. Songkran is all about whacking each other with a thick splash of fragrance-laced water meant to purify someone or something for the coming year, and no one is safe; not Buddhist monks, statues, and even elephants!

3. Sham el-Nessim

Sham el-Nessim, celebrated annually after Easter Sunday, is similar to Songkran and Holi in two aspects: it is a New Year’s celebration specifically for the Egyptian people, and it predates many of the world’s largest religions, so it is celebrated regardless of religious affiliation. It is one of the oldest holidays in the world, with proof of celebrations dating back to as early as 2,500 BCE. During Sham el-Nessim, families get together for picnics, eating fermented fish called Fesikh, and coloring boiled eggs which is eaten later in the day. Because of the custom of coloring eggs, it is widely believed that the concept of Easter eggs was derived from Sham el-Nessim.

4.) Africa Day

Celebrated on May 25 annually, Africa Day celebrates the achievements, contributions, innate love, and solidarity among the people of the African diaspora and with the world. Additionally, Africa Day is also indicative of the continued fight for all people of black descent to rise above preconceived notions of race that many in the Western world still possess. Celebrations of Africa Day mostly revolve around public gatherings and feasts filled with African specialties from all around the continent.

5.) Eid al-Fitr

Eid al-Fitr | Definition & Facts | Britannica

Eid al-Fitr, celebrated annually in the early half of mid-May, is known as the “Festival of Breaking the Fast”. It is celebrated by Muslims worldwide, and one of the best holidays you can ask for after a grueling sacrifice. Ramadan, which begins in early April, marks the start of a month-long fast where Muslims cannot eat from dawn to sunset. Eid al-Fitr breaks that fast, and as such, Muslims enjoy festive meals while offering Eid prayers in mass gatherings.

Of course, there are so much more wonderful holidays around the world, so definitely expect a part two! We love to be part of these celebrations as much as you do, and Sankara offers Meal Box and Catering from many of the world cuisines related to these holidays to help you celebrate the festivities!

India’s Most Popular Dishes

As India celebrates its annual Festival of Colors, known as Holi, we’ve decided to showcase the diverse array of dishes that have come to define Indian food not just in the Maritimes, but around the world.

There is scarcely any world cuisine as popular and widely celebrated as Indian cuisine. Aromatic, beautiful, and delicious — Indian food is a feast for all the senses. This “HOLIday”, definitely try out the following Indian dishes which are sure to leave you wanting more, even long after you’ve gobbled them down to the last bite

Butter Chicken

Arguably the most popular Indian dishes out there, Butter Chicken is a delicious stew that goes well with both rice and warm naan! Adequately spicy and savory with a silky thick gravy of tomatoes and cream, the dish consists of oven-roasted chicken pieces which sometimes come with vegetables and cashews, and is topped with a slab of butter and garnished with coriander. We speak from experience when we say that an authentic Butter Chicken is one of the best dishes anybody can have!

Vegetable Korma Curry

A tasty vegetarian option that tastes just as good as it looks! The Vegetable Korma is a medley of potatoes, cauliflower, green peas, carrots, and at times whole cashews, creating a hearty and healthy dish. Vegetable Korma is so popular that many regions, and even neighboring cities within those regions, have variants of the dish! One of the most popular variants even contains cottage cheese!

Biryani

There is no dish quite as adaptable in Indian cuisine as Biryani. Popular among Muslim Indians, as well as the entire Indian diaspora, biryani is prepared with a special mix of long grain rice and spices, resulting in a delicious base. What makes this dish so flexible is that any sort of meat and even earthy vegetables can be substituted for chicken (the most popular meat used for biryani). Lamb, beef, pork, and even prawns can be used in a biryani and the end result is still a drool-inducing meal that tingles the taste buds.

Pork Vindaloo

Tangy, spicy, and all-around delicious, Pork Vindaloo is particularly popular in southern India, and one of the more painstaking dishes to prepare. An authentic pork vindaloo requires hours of marinating with a special spice-and-vinegar wet rub being applied to the pork well before the actual cooking process. The result, however, is the perfect partner to rice and fried pastry such as samosa shells.

We have Partner Vendors across the Maritimes who have taken their authentic Indian recipes with them, providing a truly unique experience for your taste buds this Holi. Whether you’re new to Indian cuisine or an absolute fanatic, allows our Indian Partner Chefs to show you how colorful Holi and their cuisine can be when experienced together! Visit our website to order today!

Racism: The Absence of Empathy and Logic

Sankara stands united with every BIPOC and Asian community in condemning all discriminatory acts against people of color, especially hate crimes and violence. This comes in the wake of the Atlanta shooting on the evening of March 16, 2021, perpetrated by one man against eight individuals, six of which were women of Asian descent.

The most emotionally taxing aspect of this despicable crime was the context behind the suspect’s actions. Reports state that the suspect carried out the shooting due to “sexual addiction” and that shooting these women who happened to be sex workers was his way of removing the “temptation” that hounded him.

For a man to feel entitled to the lives of women due to the nature of their work is not only disgusting, but a truly alarming sign of a social devolution, fueled further by the fact that hate crimes against Asians in Canada and the United States are surging. This hits close to home, as one of our team members had also experienced a racist encounter.

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#ROOTS- MULTICULTURALISM

Sankara Team

Sankara is rooted in multiculturalism, empowered and continuously supported by the efforts of strong, like-minded people whose diverse backgrounds bring something new to the team every day. On today’s #ROOTS, we get to talk about the team that comprises Sankara, their experiences with racism in Atlantic Canada, and how our individual strengths help make the Sankara experience genuine.

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The origins of Sai Krishna: How a couple from New Delhi built their business in New Brunswick

Sai Krishna is one of our Partner Vendors who have been providing Indian meals and samosas to New Brunswick people. This food service corporation is run by a married couple, Raman Sobti and Shikha Sobti. Chef Raman started his food journey in 1999 at 17. His first order was to help his senior prepare 150 kg of butter chicken for 1000 guests. At a young age he would cook at events that ranged 200-5000 guests at a time. Everything would be prepared from scratch.

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#ROOTS: A New Series providing a BTS look into building Sankara – Part 1

We’re excited to introduce #ROOTS, our new blog series giving you a BTS look into building Sankara, the multicultural, mission-driven social enterprise we’ve been busily creating. ⁣

#Roots: Part I – On Collaboration

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New Worlds of Flavor: Dishes that Kick Off the New Year Around the World

New Year's Feast

The New Year is seen by many cultures and peoples as a clean slate that allows them to start anew, and it’s the reason why so many celebrate with full-blown New Year’s feasts!

Eating a good feast for the New Year actually is quite a long-standing tradition around the world. In Europe, they often have a dozen grapes ready that symbolize their goals for the upcoming twelve months. Asian countries have a similar practice by having various round fruits on the table which symbolize prosperity and the circular passage of time.

Aside from those traditions, however, there are dishes that are not only extremely delicious, but are a staple of a culture’s New Year’s celebration. Today, we take a look into the dishes around the world that make New Year’s feasts a truly happy affair and some proposed recipes for you to try as you enter the New Year.

Armenia – Gata (Festive Loaf Bread)

Gata is a loaf stuffed full with a thick custard. Its round shape is also representative of the overall theme of New Year’s around the world.

Armenia – Dolma

Dolmas are aromatic and delicious stuffed grape leaf rollups with rice and different nuts and vegetables. These are perfect for vegans.

Philippines – Lechon

A celebratory dish in the Philippines year-round but traditionally a New Year’s delicacy, lechon remains the “star of the show” for Media Noche, the New Year’s eve feast that Filipinos never fail to celebrate! Lechon is an aromatic spit-roast pig with extremely crispy skin and tender meat slow-cooked to perfection.

Philippines – Embutido

Embutido is an awesome surprise for anyone who tries it! It is a tangy, slightly sweet Filipino-style meatloaf made with ground pork, onions, garlic, chorizo, cheese, hard-boiled eggs, and raisins.

Japan – Soba Noodles

Japan has one of the healthier New Year’s dishes in the form of Soba noodles. These buckwheat noodles are known to be high in fibre, manganese, thiamin, and protein. These are typically served with either a hot or cold broth, and the Japanese slurp it down as the new year approaches in hopes of prolonging their life.

Japan – Osechi Ryori

Osechi Ryori is a colorful assortment of seasonal Japanese ingredients stuffed inside a bento-style box called Jubako.

Nigeria (and Spain) – Lentil Soup

Now here’s a surprise! Though in different continents, Nigeria and Spain share a mutual love of lentil soup when celebrating the New Year! Lentils symbolize prosperity and goodwill in both cultures, which is why lentil soup is prepared every New Year.

Nigeria – Obe Ata Dindin

With a deliciously rich tomato sauce and perfectly seasoned beef pieces, Obe Ata Dindin is a staple of Nigerian new year celebrations. The great thing about this dish is that you can incorporate as little or as much heat as you like.

Are there any meals from around the world you know about that makes New Year’s celebrations all the more special? Leave a comment below!

Washoku: Japan’s Culture in One Meal

Japanese Set Meal

Japan is currently tied with Italy for second on Michelin’s list of countries with the most three-star restaurants; the highest honor any culinary establishment can receive. This directly ties back to their culture, as the Japanese seem to have an unrivalled dedication to perfection. 


Japanese food in New Brunswick is extremely popular, most notably in Saint John and Moncton, and it’s all because of the respect and execution of techniques by which Japanese chefs prepare their food. Nothing encapsulates this discipline better than Washoku, a Japanese set meal of five dishes that’s meant to showcase balance and flavor.

Washoku Set Meal with Tempura as the main dish
A delicious-looking set meal complete with two Japanese favorites, Sushi and Tempura.
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