by Ilhak Tantray
SRINAGAR: Dudran, situated 14 kilometres from the Boniyar, between Baramulla and Uri, is aptly named the ‘Milk Village’. Famend for its dairy merchandise, together with milk, cheese, and butter, the hamlet holds a definite fame.
On the coronary heart of Dudran’s dairy legacy is the customary apply of Doud Khots, a convention that has spanned centuries. This distinctive technique includes the preservation of milk in small, pure cave-like buildings generally known as Doud Khots. With roughly 70–80 households residing on this remoted village, the importance of Doud Khots can’t be overstated. The residents see it as a refrigeration system bestowed upon them by nature.
These buildings, strategically constructed on high or near pure springs, serve to keep up a recent and chilly environment. Comprising picket roofs and stone partitions, the Doud Khots are geared up with picket planks encircling the caves, performing as a protecting barrier towards animals and safeguarding the saved milk and dairy merchandise. The meticulous craftsmanship of Dudran’s Doud Khots is a testomony to the neighborhood’s dedication to preserving its wealthy dairy heritage utilizing no synthetic means.
Following a number of days of storage within the Doud Khots, locals curdle the milk—a convention that endures regardless of the developments of the fashionable period. This apply stays related resulting from its means to protect dairy objects with out reliance on electrical energy, guaranteeing the longevity of milk for a number of days. It serves as a sensible demonstration of a conventional or natural refrigeration technique, permitting modern inhabitants to maximise the utility of their caves.
“Each household right here produces about 15 litres of milk day-after-day,” Arif Ahmad, a 29-year-old resident of Dudran, stated. “That is common however there are various households whose manufacturing is greater than this.” The milk is extensively used for the preparation of curd, butter, and cheese. The Doud Khots, diligently maintained by the locals, function the fixed cupboard space for these dairy merchandise.
For quite a few years, Dudran village girls have saved dairy merchandise in Doud Khots. Gulshan, a 32-year-old resident, displays on this custom, stating, “Our ardour for Doud Khot spans generations, from late customs to rising incomes.”
Manzoor Khan, a shopkeeper in Boniyar, who continuously purchases Dudran items, stated the households promoting milk earn between Rs 10,000 and Rs 12,000 monthly. They don’t have further prices for electrical energy or refrigeration.
Rehman Khan, a 46-year-old milkman, pays Dudran locals Rs 30 per litre for his or her milk, utilising the excess to provide butter, cheese, and curd. Subsequently, he sells the processed milk to close by villages and cities.
Throughout summers, nearly all of Dudran village households make buttermilk, domestically generally known as Gurus. That is required for changing curd into butter. Gurus, a coolant has been a high consuming dairy product in Kashmir for hundreds of years and remains to be an in-thing in summers within the periphery. This whole conversion course of takes place in these Doud Khots.
Rubeena, 45, shared, “We used to retailer three to 4 pots of milk within the cave for making butter and curd. Folks take the milk house after 4 days, and inside an hour, it transforms into butter with using a picket churner.”
Dr Irshad from Animal Husbandry reported that whereas Uri division generates 19,000 tonnes of milk month-to-month, Dudran hamlet persistently produces 1,800 litres (1.8 tons) of milk per day.
Dudran residents imagine within the well being benefits of consuming pure milk and its by-products. Within the absence of recent medical companies, they depend on selfmade objects to deal with varied diseases. Ghulam Hassan, 49, shared, “Diarrhoea is among the digestive points that may be handled utilizing the liquid leftover after producing butter. My father instilled this in me, and I do the identical for my youngsters.”
Villagers assert that milk and its by-products are pure, devoid of chemical substances or preservatives, making the milk natural with a number of well being advantages.
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