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Saturday, June 1, 2013

Posto-r Mangsho / Mutton in poppy seed gravy



For a long time I have been thinking of doing this post. But never could take time out enough to write this. May be because it is one of my favourite dishes and I wants to allot a long time to write it.

I remember when we were kids, Posto-r mangsho would be a delicacy. My Mom would prepare it especially during Summer when it will be too hot to eat anything that is too rich and not good enough for digestion. Made in a simple stew or rezala kind of gravy, this awesome dish would always make my mouth water.

My Grandmom was a great cook. Born and brought up in North India (Almora, Mussori, Nainital and Allahabad), my Grandmom knew, Continental cuisines, Lucknowee delicacies and of course Bengali dishes. This particular dish was taught to my Mom by my Granny and passed it on to us as well.

This is actually a Bengali version of Lucknowee dish Mutton Rezala with a Bengali twist.

So here we go…

Ingredients
  • Mutton – 1 kg (try to get that fatty kind)
  • Hung Curd – 400 grams ( water completely drained)
  • Onion – 3 large pureed and 4 whole
  • Raw papaya pulp - half cup
  • Poppy seeds – 200 grams (keep one tablespoon separate and rest make a fine paste)
  • Dry red chillies – 4 to 5
  • Whole pepper corns – 1 tablespoon
  • Pure ghee –1/2 cup
  • Salt, Sugar to taste
  • Green chillies – cut in small pieces
  • Garlic paste – 3 tablespoon (I love the taste of garlic so I put more, you can put as per your taste)
  • Ginger paste – 2 tsp
  • Whole garam masala – Star anise, Cardamom, bay leaves and cinnamon sticks (1-2 each)
  • Potatoes – as mentioned earlier, bongs can’t live without potatoes and mutton is unthinkable without them. So I add 5 potatoes cut in halves. I take big ones, you can take as per your choice or availability.
Preparation

I am taking the easier route. However I will be sharing with you both the easy way to cook it and the harder way to cook it. However, no matter what process you follow, you will have to marinate the mutton first for 3 to 4 hours.

Take a bowl. Clean the mutton thoroughly under normal water and pat dry with paper towel. Add salt, sugar, hung curd, raw papaya pulp, half portion of ginger-garlic paste and half cup ghee and mix it together. Close the bowl with a cling wrap and keep it in the fridge for 3 to 4 hours. Make sure you bring the marinated mutton to room temperature for before cooking. This will soften the mutton and bring down the cooking time.

Cooking in the Pressure cooker:
Take a big pressure cooker. Add ghee to it. (By the way, you can also add white oil or mustard oil, but for that Lucknowee taste, I use ghee.

Heat ghee. 

Add the whole garam masalas and dry red chilies. When the flavor comes out, add onion paste and sauté it in medium heat. Once the onion is light brown or pinkish in color, add the ginger-garlic paste and keep stirring, add green chilies

Add salt and sugar to taste followed by pepper corns. Cook till the raw flavor of ginger-garlic is gone.Add the marinated mutton and mix. Keep stirring from time to time. Add the poppy seed paste and whole poppy seeds.

Now comes the ‘testing your patience’ part. You will have to keep on stirring the mutton from time to time and let it cook on medium heat. Here you need to make sure that the mutton does not stick to the bottom of the pan.

This dish will have quite some amount of gravy so you will have to add water. In a separate pan heat water and keep aside. Cook the mutton till the outer fat has melted and has got mixed with the masala. Now add the potatoes, whole onions and hot water an d give it a nice mix. Taste the salt and sugar consistency. Put the lid on the pressure cooker and cook the mutton for 3 whistles or 25 minutes, whichever comes first. Open only when the pressure has gone out.

Cooking in the handi:
Take a big deep-bottomed vessel with a lid. And follow the steps till you add mutton and cook. Once the mutton starts to leave oil along with the other masalas, add potatoes and onions. Separately knead atta / wheat flour with water into tight dough. Take a big portion of aluminum foil wrap, big enough to cover the mouth of the vessel. Cover the mouth of the vessel with the foil wrap and put the lid on.

Now seal the mouth and the lid together with the dough. On a low flame cook the mutton for 1 hour. You will hear a “chit-pit” sound once the mutton is done.

Serve hot with rice or tandoori roti. I prefer it with plain steamed rice and raw chunks of onion on the side.

Please try this at home and do let me know how it came out at: kolktatakuisine@gmail.com

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Daab Chingri (Jumbo Prawn in Tender Coconut)


Today I will be writing the recipe of Daab Chingri.

Chingri, i.e, prawn is a delicacy among we, Bengalees. We simply love it. There are other preparations like lau chingri, done with (bottle gourd)lauki or lau; or jhinga chingri done with jhinga.

And perhaps the most favored is the Chingri Maccher Malai Curry or Prawn Malai Curry.

But today I am going to share with you all a different recipe, something that will make your mouth water...

Ingredients:
  • Daab (Tender Coconut) with a layer of malai in it) - 1 Big
  • Tender Coconut water or Daab water
  • Jumbo Prawns (cleaned and deveined)- 500 grms
  • Mustard Oil - 1 cup
  • Mustard Powder - 2 tsp
  • Onion paste - 4 tbsp
  • Garlic paste - 1 tsp
  • Ginger paste - 2 tsp
  • Green chillies (fine paste) - 5 to 6
  • Poppy seeds (grounded) - 1 tbsp
  • Turmeric powder - 2 tsp
  • Red chilli powder - 2 tsp
  • Homemade curd - 1/2 cup
  • Sugar - 1 tsp
  • Salt to taste
  • Atta flour dough
  • Cashew paste - Optional (grounded into a paste) 3 tbsp
How to make Daab Chingri (Jumbo Prawn in Green Coconut): Cut out the top of the big tender coconut with a fine knife in a small round shape (2 inch diameter) and keep the cut out part aside. Make sure the tender coconut is full of kernel. Pour the coconut water in a separate bowl.

Add salt, turmeric powder and red chilli powder to the uncooked prawns and keep it in a cool place for an hour.
In a pan pour mustard oil and lightly saute the prawns for not more than 2 minutes. Let it cool.

In that same pan add onion paste and saute. Add ginger-garlic paste, grounded poppy seeds and keep stirring. Add green chilli paste, a pinch of turmeric and red chilli powder. Add the curd and stir. You can also add Charmagan paste to add volume and taste.

Important: Please note that if your tender coconut does not have a soft kernel inside then while cooking the curry add coconut paste into the mixture. Without this there will not be any taste at all!

Add salt and sugar and stir till the mixture turns into a paste. At last add the coconut water. Cook for a few more moments.

When done, pour the entire mixture over the prawns and mix it well.

Make a soft dough out of a cup of atta.

Pour the entire prawn curry mixture into the big green coconut, place the cut out lid back into the coconut and seal the mouth with the atta dough.

Take a 5 litre size pressure cooker and fill it half with water. Place the entire coconut inside and close the lid and cook for 15 to 20 minutes until steam comes out. (In case have a microwave: Place the entire coconut inside the microwave. And cook at medium range for 10 minutes.)

When done take the coconut out and cut open the lid.

In a serving dish pour out the entire curry (gravy and all) and serve hot. You can eat it with plain rice or polau.

The flavor and taste of kernel mixed with the prawns and other seasonings gives a different taste that enhances the taste buds.


Another shortcut method is:

Marinate uncooked prawn in:

Medium sized prawns 500gms
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
Tender coconut water
4 tbsp coconut milk
2 tbsp cashew nut paste
2 tbsp mustard paste
4 tbsp raw mustard oil

Preparation

Marinate all the ingredients together. Cut open the tender coconut as told earlier.

Ensure the tender coconut is full of malai or tender kernel or coconut meat.

Put all the entire marinated prawns in the tender cocconut and seal with a dough. 

You can steam cook in a pressure cooker 20 minutes (without putting the whistle) or microwave for 15 minutes.

Hope you have liked this recipe. Do stay tuned for Posto-r Mangsho (Mutton with poppy seeds) if you are a Mutton freak!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Durga Puja Special: Kosha Mangsho

It has been a wile since I had posted last time. Work in office and at home makes one tend to give importance to other priorities of life. However on the day of Mahalaya, 2012, I want to start posting again.

Since Durga Puja is just a few days away, I would share some interesting recipes with you... Durgostav Special.
kosha magsho

Kosha Manghso

Kosha manghso or Mutton curry in semi-gravy is one of the most loved food in the bengali household. From the age of 9-90, everyone loves it. It is usually eater with luchi / puri, plain white steamed rice or even polau. I prefer plain white rice. Nothing like a Sunday afternoon, plain white rice, mutton curry served with quarter of a raw onion, 1 green chilli and a small slice of lemon.... awesome!

Anyways, coming back to the recipe today, lets start with the ingredients. I shall share with you the easiest way to cook it.

You need:
  • Mutton: Fresh Goat meat 1.5 kg
  • Onion: 3 big or 5 small (thinly sliced) / you can also take half kilo onion
  • Ginger paste: 2 tbsp
  • Garlic paste (mutton needs lots of garlic so, use liberally): For marination 6-7 cloves paste and for cooking 5-6 cloves paste
  • Tomato puree: 3 medium sized tomatoes
  • Green chillies: 4 large
  • Turmeric powder: 1 big spoonful
  • Red chilli powder: 1 big spoonful
  • Kashmiri mirch powder: 2 big spoonful
  • Salt and sugar to taste
  • Whole Garam masala: 1 Bay leaf, 3 green cardamon, 3 cloves, 2 cinnamon sticks
  • Jeera powder: 1 small spoonful
  • Dhaniya powder: 1 small spoonful
  • White vinegar: 1 small spoonful
  • Garam masala powder: 1 big spoonful
  • Potatoes: 4 / 5Medium sized, cut in halves
  • Mustard oil
  • Hot water
How to make:

The best way to start is the the day before. You need to marinate the mutton pieces properly. So overnight is better. If you want to get the taste of fresh mutton, you can marinate it from morning. However, please ensure that you give at least 3-4 hours time to marinate.

Take a big bowl. Put all the washed pieces of mutton in it. I like bigger pieces so I fork them a bit so that the juices go inside. Put 1 tsp of turmeric powder, 1 tsp of chilli powder, 4 tsp of ginger-garlic paste, salt to taste and  1 tsp of white vinegar. Mix well. Cover it with a cling wrap to seal all the flavors and put it in the refrigerator.

Once the mutton is properly marinated, take it out and keep it out for sometime to bring it to room temperature.

How take a big pressure cooker. My sister cooks in in a handi and then later shifts it to a pressure cooker. I cook directly in the cooker. You can take your pick.

Put oil liberally. And I mean it. I know people are health freak these days, but once a year you can use a little more oil. My dad says, in mutton curry, the mutton should float in oil and fat. We don't want that here but we can use a little bit more oil.

Anyways, once the oil is hot and smoking switch off the gas. Once it is cool switch on the gas again and let it get re-heated. Once it starts smoking again, put the whole garam masala: 4 green cardamon, 2 bay leaves, 5 cloves and 2 cinnamon sticks. Once the garam masalas start to crackle, add the thinly sliced onions. Let it fry properly. Keep stirring. Add a pinch of salt to keep the onions from burning.

Once the onion is cooked, add ginger and garlic paste. Mix well. Once the raw smell of ginger and garlic goes away add the tomato puree. Take the green chillies and smash them coarsely in a pestle. In case you don't have one, you can do it with the back of the knife. This adds to the flavor. Add the green chillies once done. Let the masalas fry on medium flame. Now add the mutton.

Mix well. And keep cooking.

Now add the dry powders: 2 tsp of Kashmiri red mirch (this will give color but not the heat), 1 tsp of cumin powder, 1 tsp of dhaniya / coriander powder and sugar to taste.

Mix well.

Now comes a long process of cooking the mutton in low-to-medium flame to take away the rawness and burn the excess mutton fat. In a separate pan, fry the potatoes and keep them aside.

Heat 1 cup water in a pan till it boils and keep aside.

Once you notice that the mutton has started leaving oil and it is semi cooked, add the potatoes followed by water.

Mix well.

If you are cooking in a handi you can continue cooking the mutton in medium to low heat, stirring occasionally. This process will take you 45 mins to 1.5 hours. You can take a big foil wrap, cover the handi's mouth with the wrap and then put lid on it. This will seal the flavors inside and quicken the cooking process.

In case you want to cook it in pressure cooking, check the taste in case you need to add salt or sugar. It would be purrrrfect! Once you put the pressure cooker lid wait for 2 whistles on high flame. Then turn the flame to low and let the mutton sit for 10 mins. Switch off the flame.

DO NOT OPEN THE COOKER IMMEDIATELY. Let the pressure build inside the cooker die down slowly.

Your mutton curry is ready to eat. I personally prefer mangsho-r jhol (mutton curry in watery gravy). The curry should be red in color and hot.

Serve it with:

White rice
Polau
Roti / Phulas
Parathas
Luchi / Puris made of maida

Try this at home and let me know how it came out. You can ping me @ kolkatakuisine@gmail.com

Coming up next in the line is: Lau chingri.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Local Eateries at Kolkata


First I need to confess that the idea of this reference section is not mine. This was started by my uncle, (Pranam Roy) in Facebook where he requested all his friends to name 3 of their favorite eating joints of Kolkata. He was particular to mention that we should not name the posh or expensive restaurants. Only the local, roadside joints that draws thousands and thousands of Kolkattans everyday. I have taken all of them and made a foodictionary for all the eateries. This is the English version. Click here for the Bengali version. You are free to add yours. You can mail me at: kolkatakuisine@gmail.com or simply leave a comment. I will add your favorite in the list.

Reference List: (A - Z)

A
• Arsalan biryani
• Sharma’s beside Ashutosh College
• Anadi’s moghlai porotha – it’s so soft that it melts in your mouth. They give a spicy potato curry with that. Awesome.
• Aminia (Esplanade) =Tandoori roti and Chicken curry 

B
• Bobo Shambo VP’s phuchka walla
• Bedwin’s fish roll
• Bhawanipur Sharma's Kachauri
• Fowl cutlet of Chacha's on Beadon Street
• Benfish eatery[Open air] at karunamoyee, fried-rice[35-40Rs], gravy chowmin etc.]
• Bura Bazar’s Lassi
• Bhojohori Manna
• Benfish’s Fish fry,
• Bijoli grill’s fish fry
• Bancharam’s sweets

D
• Decker's lane - Chittoda’s toast & chicken stew
• Deshapriyo Park - Maharaja or Maharani’s Kachauri-aalu sabji with jalebi
• Dacre's Lane’s - Ruti & Mutton Stew
• Beside Deshopriyo Park Bus Stand - Mashima's Ghugni (simple Ghugni / Mutton Ghugni)

E
• Elgin Road Gurudwara - Dhaba Tea... 
• Esplanade - cholle batore
• Exide - momo
• Esplanade - MANGO LASSI
• Ekdalia - Tasty corner’s Kachauri 
• Eliot Road - Suruchi's Lau-chingri (lauki with prawns), Ilish Shorshe (hilsa in mustard curry paste), etc
• Esplanade - Rallis Kulfi-Phaluda & Firni. In fact any sarbat
• Exide - Haldiram’s Chinese bhel

G
• Gariahat - Campari’s roll, 
• Gangotri[AC] at CF block veg cutlet (10Rs) coffee(10Rs)
• Gariahat - Das Cabin Moghlai Paratha
• Gariahat – Sonali’s masala dosa...
• Grub club at Gol Park  
• Golbari’s kasha mangsho r ruti (spicy dry mutton with phulkas)
• Gariahat - Bedwin’s double egg double mutton roll

H
• Hajra - Biryani (1/2 plate )

• Haji Saheb’s Roll and other Biriyani stuffs

J
• Back of Jadavpur 8B Bus-stand - Phuluri & Tele-Bhaja (fried pakoras)

K
• Mutton roll at Karnani Mansion
• Kidderpore - Bread & Kosha Maangsho (spicy dry mutton)

L
• Lord Sinha Road - Mayaram's Paw Bhaji, 
• Lake Market - Komala Villa’s South Indian Thaali
• Lake Market - Radu babu’s Chicken Kabiraji and tea

M
• Mandevilla Gardens - Tasty Corner’s Radhaballavi (daal puri), alurdom (dum aalo), kachauri

N
• New Market - Nizam's - jeta khaabe sheta
• New market - phuchka,
• New Market - Nahoum’s cakes and breads

P
• PARK CIRCUS - ROLL CORNER 
• Park street. - Hot Kati Roll
• Purno Cinema - Sangu-Valley'te Fish Kobiraji
• Paramounter sorbot (specific dab sorbot) 
• Princep Ghaat - Pav bhaji
• Peep-n-Inn Roll

R
• Royal = Chicken chap
• Rashbehari - Punjabi Dhaba's Tandoori Roti & Butter Chicken
• R. N. Mukherjee Road – In front of Birla House “Chilla-Chutney”
• Rabindra Sadan - momo

S
• SHREEHARI ‘s KACHORI
• Scoop[AC} opposite to salt lake swimming pool: As you like it ice cream 5 scoop of icecream with lot of cashew nut  dry fruits etc.[130Rs], momo[70Rs],sandwitch[60-70Rs], funky roll[35Rs]
• South calcutta - (mind it not kolkata) bhabanipur cabin’s Kobiraji cutlet with kasundi (Indian mustard sauce) 
• Saltlake Karunamoi – bapida’s chicken fry
• Shiraz-r Biriyani
• South Indian Club (Purnadas road) Masala Dosa, Mysore Bonda

T
• Tiwari brothers’ lassi
• Triangular park – Minibox’s hakka chowmein; 

U
• Vadas at Udipi

V
• Vivekananda Park - Puchka, Dahi-Phuchka, Alurdom phuchka;  & Batata-Puri. 
• Vaardhan market - Pav Bhaaji

Z
• Zeeshan Tikia Roll

Friday, July 29, 2011

Bhetki Fry / Bhetki maacher fry


Bhekti Fry or rather commonly known as fish fry among bengalees is a favorite among all. From old to young, from kids to adults, almost everyone likes fish fry. It is basically pure bhetki fillet that are marinated for hours and then coated with breadcrumbs and deep fried.

Attend any Bengali wedding ceremony or any other occasion and fish fry will be there. People will just hog on it. I myself have always love this item. I don’t know why it took me so long to post about fish fry.

There is another version of fish fry, known as fish batter fry. Here the only difference is the batter and the coating. I love fish fry more. It is more of the American version of fish and chips. At Bengali households you eat it with plain daal and hot boiled rice or polau or even plain French fries and tartar sauce. Your wish. But do try this at home. You can try this with other variety of fish fillet like Pomphret, Sardines, etc, but I would suggest that go for Bhetki fillet. You will love it.

One important point – start the preparation a day early. You need enough time to let the fillets marinate. If you want to eat them for dinner, marinate them the night before for best results.

Ingredients:

• Bhekti fillets – 10 to 12 thin slices
• Onion – 1 (grind to a fine paste)
• Ginger paste – I tsp
• Garlic paste – 3 tsp
• Egg – 1
• Pepper powder – 2 tsp
• Oregano seasoning – 2 tsp (you can use pizza seasoning as well. This is purely optional)
• Sugar – ½ tsp
• Green chilies – finely chopped
• Lemon juice / vinegar – 2 – 3 tsp
• Coriander leaves – finely chopped
• Salt to taste
• Breadcrumbs & semolina – Remember you need double coating so keep enough handy.
• Oil for frying

How to prepare:

Wash and clean the bhetki fillets and pat dry with a paper towel. Now add lemon / vinegar juice and salt. In a separate bowl beat egg and mix pepper powder, green chilies, ginger-garlic paste, onion paste, sugar, oregano seasoning and coriander leaves. Pour the entire mixture into the bhetki fillets and mix well. Marinate overnight and put it in the refrigerator. You can put a cling wrap so that the flavors stay locked.

Next day morning take out marinated fish fillet. Pour breadcrumbs on a flat dish. Add semolina as 4:1 ratio. For best results add 2 tsps of semolina only. Mix well. add a bit of salt.

Take each fillet along with the coriander leaves, green chilies, and other ingredients and put them on the breadcrumb mixture. Put on both sides. With the flat of your palm press each fillet on the breadcrumbs so that they stick to the fillet well. On a flat plate place each coated fillet one by one.

Once all are coated well, refrigerate again.

Just before you want to serve, take out the fillets. Take some more breadcrumbs (this time no need to mix semolina).

Heat white oil in a frying pan. Oil should be enough to fry the fillet properly. Once the oil is hot enough to fry, take one fillet, gently pat on each side of the fillet with breadcrumb and slowly slip it into the oil.

Let it fry on one side and then slowly turn it into the other side. Wait till it is golden brown in color on both sides. Place the fillet on a paper towel to drain out the excess oil.

Serve hot, with hot rice and daal, or polau. Best had just like that with crispy fried potato fries and tartar sauce.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Rui Macher Kalia (Spicy Rohu Curry)

Rui Mach or Rohu fish is suppose to be one of the regular staple diets of every Bengali household. Rohu is easily available in any Bengali fish market and also it is one of the most affordable fish you can find. There are a number of preparations for rohu such as:

Rui-er jhal – Rohu extra-spicy curry with thin gravy
Doi Rui – Rohu in curd gravy. This one is a sweeter variety. My father likes it a lot. You add raisins and cashews in it.
Rui-er jhol – A simple rohu gravy with veggies like cauliflower and lots of coriander leaves
Rui Bhaja – Plain fried fish marinated in salt and turmeric (some prefer to add lime juice and red chili powder) and deep fry it in mustard oil. Devour it with rice, daal or khichuri.
Rui-er Dom – A steamed rohu preparation in mustard, poppy seed and curd paste.
Rui-er Kalia – A spicy preparation in tomato and onion gravy.
Many other preparations are there. There is no end to it. But for today I have taken up Rui Macher Kalia, rohu in a spicy curry. Yummy….

By the way, before I start I must mention that always prepare Bengali fish curry in mustard oil. And fry the fish in mustard oil as well. Otherwise you will not get that true essence.

What you need:

• Rohu Fish – 500 grms cut into medium sized pieces
• Potatoes – 3 large, cut into long thick slices (many prefer to dice it in round shapes even)
• Tomato – 2 medium sized finely chopped
• Onion – 1
• Ginger paste – 1 tbsp
• Garlic – 2 to 3 cloves
• Jeera – ½ tsp (some even use Panch Phoron – it is a mixture of 5 whole spices, jeera, fenugreek, mustard, fennel & radhuni)
• Turmeric powder – 3 tsp
• Red Chili Powder – 1 tsp
• Kashmiri Mirch Powder – 1 tsp (for color)
• Mustard Oil – For frying the fish & cooking
• Green chilies – 3 to 4
• Coriander leaves – finely chopped
• Salt & sugar to taste

How to prepare:

Wash the fish pieces thoroughly in water and pat dry. In a bowl put the fish, add salt and turmeric and rub the spices in the fish pieces. Keep aside for 30 mins.

Meanwhile, grind onion and garlic together, keep aside.

Once the fish pieces have absorbed the turmeric and salt, heat mustard oil in a kadai. The oil should be adequate enough for frying.

Once the smoke starts coming slowly slide the fish pieces one by one. Make sure you don’t crowd them in the kadai. Also make sure the oil is well heated otherwise the fish will stick to the bottom of the kadai. I would suggest you take a non-stick kadai.

Fry both the sides of the fish in medium heat. Once done, take the fish pieces out, drain the excess oil and keep aside. Now in the same oil add the potato pieces and fry them till they are light golden brown in color. Fried potatoes add a special flavor.

Pour out the excess oil from the kadai in a separate dish and keep 4 tbsps of oil in the kadai. Rohu Kalia is a spicy and oily dish. So if you have excess oil, it doesn’t matter. I don’t use fresh oil because, the smell & taste of the fish remains in the oil and makes the dish tastier.

Now re-heat oil in the same kadai. Add whole jeera and let it splutter. Now add ginger paste, fry for some time. Add onion and garlic paste and fry till the rawness of the onion is gone. Add finely chopped tomatoes and fry again. Here you can sprinkle a little bit of water. Once the tomato starts to cook, add turmeric, salt, sugar, red chili powder, slit green chilies, and kashmiri chili powder.

Fry the entire mixture for few minutes and keep adding water from time to time. Once the entire mixture has cooked add the potatoes and fish pieces. Add adequate water. Usually Rohu curry will have a spicy thick gravy. It is to your liking how much gravy you will want.

In a medium heat let the fish and potato cook. Cover the kadai with a lid. Check from time to time and stir occasionally. Once the potato is soft and fish is done sprinkle chopped coriander leaves and stir once. Turn off the heat.

Pour the entire content in a big dish. Garnish with coriander leaves and slit green chilies.

Serve hot with white rice or polau. Your Spicy Rohu Curry or Rui Macher Kalia is ready to eat.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Kacha Posto Bora (Poppy seed small cakes)

Posto bora is a rare delicacy cooked in the bengali household. Also known as poppy seed cakes, these posto (poppy seed) boras (small round cakes) are yummilicious.

It is rarely made may be because poppy seeds are expensive and these boras are so mouthwateringly tasty that you need to make lots of them. Easy to cook and make here is the recipe. Can be eaten with steamed rice and plain daal.

What you need:

• Posto / poppy seeds – 1 cup
• Green chilies – 3 finely chopped
• Green chilies – 2 for grinding
• Onion – 1 finely chopped
• Maida / besan – 3 to 4 tbsp
• Salt & sugar to taste
• Mustard oil for frying

Preparation

Soak the posto in water along with a pinch of salt for 30 minutes. Now in a grinder add the posto with the water and 2 green chilies. Make sure the mixture turns in to a smooth paste with no grains visible.

Now in a bowl add chopped onions, green chilies, ground posto and mix well. Add salt and sugar. Some like it sweet and some like it salty. Add the seasoning as per your taste. Add the besan or maida so that it binds well and the mixture no longer remains runny. Now add a little bit of mustard oil and mix well.

In a non-stick pan, heat little bit of oil. Make small round cakes and gently put them in the pan one by one. Fry them in the medium heat so that they don’t burn. Turn the boras once they are done to cook on the other side.

Once done, drain the boras in a paper towel. You posto bora is ready to eat. Serve hot.

Karaishutir Kachuri (Green Peas Kachori)

Green peas kachori is a Bengali delicacy, specially for morning breakfast or dinner. It can be eaten with aloo dum, any mixed veg sabzi or even kosha mangsho (dry mutton curry). There are other varieties of green peas kachori such as dal kachori, hing kachori, etc.

Green peas kachori is basically puris with green peas stuffing.

So here goes the recipe:

For Kachori:

• Maida – 2 cups
• Ghee – 3 tbsp
• Salt – ½ tsp

For filling of the Kachori:

• Green peas – 500 grms
• Grated ginger – 1 tsp
• Green chilies – 3 to 4
• Jeera – 1 tsp
• Hing- 1 pinch
• Amchoor Powder (optional) – 1 tsp
• Sugar & Salt to taste
• Oil/ghee for frying the kachori & filling

Preparation:

Take a mixing bowl and add maida, salt and mix well. Add the quantity of ghee and water to make it into a soft dough.

Wash the green peas. In a mixer add the green peas, ginger, green chillies and a pinch of salt and a bit of water and grind it into a fine paste.

In a kadai, add a bit of ghee. Add a jeera and hing and wait for it to splutter. Add the mixture and stir till the green peas mixture is cooked. You will notice that the color is turning to light brown. Stir constantly to avoid the mixture from sticking to the bottom of the kadai.

Once done, keep it aside and let it cool. When the mixture cools down divide the mixture into small round balls.

Divide the maida dough into medium sized balls. Don’t make the balls too small otherwise the green peas mixture will come out. Press with the thumb in the middle of each ball to flatten it a bit. Take each green peas mixture ball and place it in the middle of the maida ball and cover it with the maida dough. Close it well and with a rolling pin flatten the ball into a puri. Use dry maida to roll each ball so that it does not stick.

Heat oil or ghee in a kadai enough to deep fry the puris. Once the oil is heated, slowly slip one puri. Press gently with the frying spoon so that each becomes puffed. Slowly turn the puri to fry the other side. Fry till the puris are golden brown in color.

Remove and drain in a paper towel. Serve immediate with any mixed vegetable curry, dum aloo or mutton kosha.

Your green peas kachori is ready to eat

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Chingri-r Jhal with a twist (Spicy prawn curry)

Chingri or prawns are a favorite among most bengalees. We love prawns in any form – deep fried, shallow fried, in coconut milk gravy (malai curry), plain jhol/gravy of potato and tomato.

This preparation is done with prawns but with a twist. Those who really love it hot and spicy should try this out. And if you love the taste of coriander, then you might love this.

Here’s what you’ll need:

• Jumbo prawns / tiger prawns – deveined and de-shelled about 1 kg
• Tomato – 2 finely chopped
• Onion – 1 big finely chopped
• Ginger paste – 2 tsp
• Garlic cloves – 5 finely chopped
• Coriander leaves – 1 bunch finely chopped
• Turmeric – 3 tsp
• Red chili powder – 2 tsp
• Kashmiri kal mirch (Red capsicum powder) – 2 tsp
• Green chilies – 4 to 5 finely chopped
• Mustard oil – 2 cup
• Lemon juice – ½ lemon
• Salt to taste

Clean, devein and de-shell the prawns and mix in ½ lemon juice, ½ tsp of salt and ½ tsp of turmeric powder for 30 minutes.

Take a big bowl pour in the prawns. Now one by one add all the ingredients together to the prawns. Mix well. Keep a bit of coriander leaves and green chilies for garnishing.

Cover with a cling wrap or a lid and marinate for 2-3 hours.

Heat a kadai. Non-stick pan should work better. Once it is medium hot, pour in the entire ingredients. Now in a low to medium heat cook the entire prawns in the kadai. Cover occasionally and stir from time to time so that the masala does not get stuck at the bottom. With time, all the oil and other ingredients will start to mix together and soften.

It will taken 45 mins to 1 hr for the entire masalas to mix together. Add a little water if you want it to have gravy. But make sure it is not runny. You will notice, owing to all the tomatoes and kashmiri red chilies powder along with the coriander leaves and green chilies, you prawn curry will have a unique bright red and green look.

Once done, pour the entire curry in a bowl and garnish with coriander leaves and green chilies.

Serve hot. You can eat this spicy chingri / prawn curry with white rice or polau.
Prawn on FoodistaPrawn

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Mishti Mukh - Ras Malai

Ras Malai is basically small cottage cheese dumplings in flavored milk. It is available at any sweet shop but it becomes more special if you make it at home. My Boudi (bhabi/co-sister) taught me to prepare this and I tried it out. It really came out well. I am sure you will like it too. It is the simplest recipe ever.

Here it goes…

What you need: 

  • Milk – 1 ltr
  • Tinned Rasgullas – 1 tin (you can avail MTR, Haldiram’s or any such tinned varieties. They come in a pack of 20 rasgullas)
  • Kesar strands – 2 to 4
  • Dry fruits such as almonds, pistachios, cashews, raisins – a handful.
Preparation

Take half cup of milk and soak the kesar strands for 30 mins. You can use kesar color or food color. Take the almonds, pistachios, cashews and coarsely chop them. Keep aside.
In a big pan or kadai heat milk. Bring into boil. Then lower the flame and wait for the milk to get thickened. Make sure the milk has reduced to half its quantity. Keep stirring so that the milk does not catch the bottom of the pan. You will notice that the malai has started to form in the milk.

Ras malai is usually not that sweet to taste therefore you can avoid putting any sugar in it. But if you like it real sweet, you can pour in 3-4 tbsp of sugar syrup into the boiling milk.

Add the kesar soaked milk and stir gently. If you want to add food color or kesar powder then also do not add it to the milk directly. Soak in a small amount of milk and then pour it into the milk once it has reduced.

Take each rasgulla from the tin and squeeze out the excess sugar syrup so that only the fluffy rasgulla is left. One by one pour them into the milk. You will see that the rasgulla will immediately start to soak the milk in. Bring into one boil and switch off the gas immediately. Remove from heat. Don’t keep the milk too much in the gas after you put in the rasgullas otherwise they will break and dissolve in the milk.

Sprinkle the dry fruits liberally so that all the rasgullas get coated equally. 

Once cool put it inside the fridge. Serve cold. 

Your ras malai is ready to eat.

Shukto - The Mixed Veg Delicacy


Shukto (mixed vegetable delicacy) is one of the most common items in Bengali household. It is said that in the older days a newly married girl’s cooking skills were judged based on the taste of Shukto. However, each Bengali family will have a different taste to the shukto they prepare. But whatever it is, it should have a unique blend of bitter and sweet combination. Shukto one can say is more of a Bengali version of South India food Avial.

It is also said that you must eat shukto first before you start any other course. Shukto is usually eaten with white rice and eaten during the lunch time.

Shukto is the first item served followed by a fried vegetable, daal, mixed veg curry, then a non-veg fish/mutton/chicken and lastly chutney and sweet. It is said that the bitter ingredients present in shukto aids our digestive system to work better.

Ingredients:

You can add any vegetable you want. But make sure all the vegetables are in equal shape. So here is the list:

Bitter gourd – 1, finely sliced in round shape
Ridge gourd (jhinge) – 1 chopped
Bringal (begun) – 1 chopped
Raw Green Banana (Kancha Kola) – 1 chopped
Beans – 5 to 6 chopped
Potato – 1 chopped
Carrots – 1 chopped
Daaler vadi (dried nuggets made from ground lentil) – 10
Fenugreek seeds (Methi) – 1 tsp
Bay leaves / Tejpata – 3
Asafetida / Hing – a pinch
Mustard seeds – 2 tbsps soaked for 1 hour in water and a pinch of salt
Poppy seeds – 1 tbsp soaked in water for 1 hour
Ginger paste – 1 tbsp
Sugar – 2 tsp
Milk – ½ cup
Ghee
Salt to taste

Preparation:

Grind mustard seeds and poppy seeds with a pinch of salt and a little water and keep aside. Do not use mustard paste immediately otherwise it will be bitter to taste.

Chop all the vegetables in similar shapes. If you chop them long then all should be long, if you diced them in big chunks, make sure they are all diced.

Pour 2 tbsp on ghee in a frying pan and fry all the vegetables one by one and keep aside. Make sure the bitter gourd is fried last. Next, fry the vadis until they are crispy and light brown in color.

In a separate kadai, heat 2 tbsp on ghee. Add fenugreek seeds, bay leaves and hing. Wait it the smell of hing reaches you and the seeds start to sputter. Put the vegetables together and mix well. Add the mustard-poppy seed paste followed by the ginger paste. Fry in a medium flame. Add sugar, salt, milk and a little water. Shukto is never runny. It should not have much gravy. Cover the kadai with a lid and cook in a low flame till the vegetables are cooked. Before taking it out of the flame add the vadis. Mix well.

Your shukto is ready to eat. Eat it with plain hot rice.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Shorshe Chingri / Prawns in Mustard Sauce

Shorshe Chingri is a typical Bengali delicacy. We also know it as bhapa chingri or steamed prawns. It is jumbo prawns in mustard paste. It is suppose to be hot and extremely tasty. For me you eat with steamed rice that’s it.

Ingredients
• Jumbo prawns / Tiger Prawns – 1 kg
• Mustard seeds – ½ cup
• Green chilies – 7 to 8
• Turmeric powder – 3 tsp
• Sugar – 1 tsp
• Cashew paste – 3 tsp
• Mustard Oil – ½ cup
• Salt to taste

Clean, de-vein and cut the head and tails of the prawns. Mix it with turmeric and salt. Keep aside. Soak mustard seeds in water and a little bit salt for more than 1 hour otherwise it will be bitter to taste. Now grind the mustard seeds along with 4 to 5 chilies and a pinch of salt. Keep aside.

Gas version:In a tight lid box grease mustard oil. Mix in the prawns, mustard paste and cashew paste. Add raw mustard oil and one or two slit green chilies. Pour water in the pressure cooker. Put the box inside the cooker in a stand. Make sure the water doesn’t go inside the box. Wait for two whistles.
Garnish with slit green chilies. Serve hot.

Microwave version:Take a microwave safe bowl. Grease a little with mustard oil. Mix in the prawns, mustard paste and cashew paste. Add raw mustard oil and one or two slit green chilies. Cook the prawns for 12-15 minutes on a High.
Garnish with slit green chilies. Serve hot.

Eat with basmati rice or even polau.

Jhaal Moori - Another version of Bhel Puri

Well Jhaal Moori is basically very tikha/hot puffed rice mixed in mustard oil, raw onion, cucumber and all those tikha khatta masala along with peanuts, green chillies and fried grated sewai.. The meaning of Jhaal Moori is jhaal in Bengali means very tikha/hot. And Moori in Bengali means Puffed Rice. This particular item is very spicy and tasty. Thus where the name came from.

Since I am into typical Bengali cuisine, I wanted to make it sholo aanaa Bangali, meaning, 100% bengali. Keep in mind that the entire thing should be very spicy and full of green chilies. In bengali "jhaal" means tikha or chili hot. So you can well understand.

Thus is post goes like this:

Ingredients:

Puffed rice (moori) - 1 cup
Half Onion - finely chopped
Half Cucumber - finely chopped
Coconut Slices - finely chopped
Tomato Slices - finely chopped
Green chili - finely chopped
Roasted peanuts
Chopped cilantro/dhaniya
Red chili powder - 1 tsp
Black Salt - 1 tsp
Aamchur Powder - 2 tsp
Common salt to taste
Mustard oil - 1 tbsp
Meetha chutney - 1 tbps
Lemon juice - 1 tsp
Fried Sewai/Sev - A handful

How to make Jhaal Moori: In a bowl add puffed rice (moori) along with chopped onion, cucumber, coconut, tomato and green chilli. Add red chill powder, salt, black salt and aamchur powder. Mix well. Add peanuts and mix again. Add mustard oil, meetha chutney and lemon juice. Serve in a bowl. Sprinkle with dhaniya/cilantro and sewai/sev. Eat immediately before the onion and cucumber leaves its water. Your Jhaal Moori is ready to eat.

Keemar Shingara (Keema Ka Samosa)

Samosas! God knows how many addas (chit-chat) it has seen over hot cups of tea, how many evenings it had filled people's stomachs and how many times it has made people salivate for that one crispy bite....

Samosas are perhaps the favorite bengali snacks.

But here is a small twist in the tale. Being a non-veg bengali, I would want to add a bit different touch to this typical aloo samosa. My recipe deals with mutton keema samosa or as it is known in bengal, shingara:

Ingredients:

Mutton Keema - 500 gms
Potato - 250 gms finely chopped
Green Peas - 250 gms
Maida - 500 gms
Curd (optional)
Dabur Homemade Ginger-Garlic Paste - I pouch
Onion - 1 big, finely chopped
Ghee - 1 cup
Cooking soda - 1 tbsp
Milk - ½ cup
Red chilli powder - 2 tsp
Aamchur powder - 1 tsp
Whole Jeera - 2 tsp
Heeng - 1 tsp
Ajwain - 1 tsp
Green chillies - 3 to 4
Salt to taste
Oil for frying

For the coating: To make the Shingara (samosa) coating in a bowl pour the maida. Add cooking soda, ajwain, heeng and salt to it. Mix well. Then add ghee and again mix. You can also add curd/dahi into it. But that is optional. Then with the help of milk and water make a tight dough. Keep it aside for 2 hours, covering it with a wet cloth.

For the Keema filling: Boil green peas and chopped potatoes separately. In a kadai heat oil. Add whole jeera, heeng, chopped onion and fry till brown. Add ginger-garlic paste. Keep stirring. Add the washed keema and boiled potato and peas and cook well. Add red chilli powder, aamchur powder and green chillies. Add salt to taste. Stir till its cooked. The mixture will be a dry one. Keep aside to cool.

How to make it: Punch the dough a few times. Then make round semi-big balls out of it. Flatten them with a belan as you do while making puri or kachuri or luchi. Make sure the flattened puris are not too thick. Then take a spoon full of keema mixture and place it in the centre of the round puri. Cover the mixture in all side with the help of water till its sealed inside. Bring the shape of a Shingara (samosa). Heat oil in a kadai. Deep fry the Shingaras (samosas) till they are deep brown in color. Serve hot with tomato ketchup or chutney.

Your Keema-r shingara (Keema Ka Samosa) is ready to eat.

Kacha Keemar Bhaja Bora (Keema - Bread pakora)

This is a snacks my mother makes for evening snacks. Or some guest comes or my friends comes. This is fast, tasty and very easy to make. For Kacha Keemar Bhaja Bora (Keema-Bread Pakora) you will need:

Mutton keema - 500 gm
8 bread slices
4 eggs
2 grated onions
Ginger garlic paste - 4 tsp (Best will be 1 whole pouch of Dabur's Homemade Ginger-Garlic paste)
Termeric - 1 tsp
Red chilli powder - 4 tsp
Cooking soda 1 tsp
Green chillies chopped according to taste
Salt to taste
Mustard Oil for frying

The pakora mixture: Wash the mutton keema and keep it aside. Dip the bread slices in water, take in out immediately and squeeze out the excess water. Add the bread slices to the keema. Then add eggs and mix well. Then add onion paste, ginger-garlic paste, termeric, red chilli powder, green chillies, cooking soda and mix well until its a thick mixture. Keep it aside for 30 minutes.

Heat mustard oil in a kadai. See to it that the oil is perfect for frying pakoras. Make small balls of the pakora mixture and pour them one by one in the heated oil. Fry till they are deep brown. Serve them with Maggie Hot & Sweet Tomato Ketchup or Meetha Chutney. But always serve hot.

Your Kacha Keemar Bhaja Bora (Keema-Bread Pakora) is ready to eat.

Dhokar Dalna - A complete veggie delight

Imagine the situation here: a hot summer afternoon, someone's getting married and you're invited for the wedding-day lunch. On such occasions you are bound to come across Dhokar Dalna or the Daal Burfi Spicy Curry. The best part is, dhokar dalna is always red in color and the spicier the better.

Ingredients:

Chanaa Daal / Cholar - 200 gms
Potato - 2 big diced in cubes
Dhaniya paste - 1 tbsp
Jeera paste - 1 tbsp
Garam masala powder – 1 tsp
Red chilli powder - 1 tsp
Turmeric powder - ½ tsp
Curd - ½ cup
Dabur Homemade Ginger paste - 2 tbsp.
Green chilies - 4
Ghee – 2 tbsp
Cooking soda – 1 tsp
Sugar to taste
Salt to taste
Mustard oil - For frying and cooking

How to make Dhoka / Daal Burfi: Soak the channa daal overnight. In a grinder, grind the daal with ½ tsp of ginger, salt, green chillies, and cooking soda. Add a bit of chilli powder and turmeric powder as well. When the paste is made keep it aside. Heat mustard oil in a pan. And add the daal mixture. Fry till the water gets dried but it still remains like a paste. Grease a round plate with a bit of ghee or oil. And spread mixture in a fine layer. When it sets down, cut the mixture into diamond shapes and take them out. Heat oil again and deep fry each cubes till they are golden brown in color. Make sure they don't break.

How to make the curry: In the same oil add jeera, ginger and dhaniya paste. Stir the mixture. Add turmeric powder, red chilli powder, curd, a pinch of sugar and salt. Stir well till then curd starts leaving water and oil from it. Add the potatoes and mix again. Add required quantity of water and stir till its a thick curry paste. Add garam masala powder and mix well. Add the fried slices of dhokas and cook till the dhoklas soak the gravy properly. Add ghee. Serve hot. Can be eaten with rice or luchi or puri. Its a complete veggie dish without onion and garlic. Your Dhokar Dhalna is ready to eat.

Begun Bashanti (Baingan ka Kalanji)

This can be treated as the sequel to the Khichuri recipe. Brinjal goes great with khichuri. Brinjal fry, beguni (brinjal dressed in a besan coating), begun bashanti are all great tasting food. So here goes the recipe for Begun bashanti or baingan ka kalanji.

Ingredients

Big eggplants - 4
Ground poppy seed paste - 250 gms
Ground mustard seed paste - 250 grms
Whole red chillies - 5 pcs
Green chilli paste - 2 to 3 pcs
Dhaniya - chopped
Red chilli powder - 3 tsp
Turmeric powder - 2 tsp|
Sugar - 2 tsp
Jeera powder - 2 tsp
Curd - 1 cup
Mustard Oil - for frying
Salt to taste
Chopped tomatoes and tamarind pulp (optional)


How to make it: Wash the eggplants. Cut them vertically in to long slices so that each gives the shape of a boat. Apply turmeric, red chilli powder, sugar and salt to the eggplant slices. Keep it aside and let the eggplants soak the seasoning. Heat oil in a pan. Fry each eggplant slices till they are cooked and golden brown in color. Keep them aside.

In another pan heat a bit of oil. Add jeera, red chillies and curd. Stir a bit. Then add ground poppy seed and mustard paste. Cook. Add green chilli paste. Add salt to taste. (In many states they add chopped tomatoes and tamarind pulp as well but that would lose its Bengali identity). Add chopped dhaniya. When the mixture is cooked take the pan off the flame.

In a flat serving dish line up the fried eggplant slices one by one. Then pour the cooked mixture gently above the eggplant slices. Let it settle. When you will serve, make sure the mixture remains settled on the slices. Your Begun Bashanti (Baingan Kalanji) is ready to eat. Serve this yummy dish with khichuri, luchi, puri, or polav.

Khichuri / Khichri - Steamy Combo of rice & daal

Before I start with my Khichuri recipe, I would like to say that Khichuri is something that is a part of the bengali household. You make Khichuri any time you want. We also know a lot about our Khichuri Bhog that is used as a prasadam for God. It is served along with bhajis and sabji.

Other times when you love to eat Khichuri is when it's raining heavily outside. Just imagine those water-logged streets through which only tanga-richshaws can pass, the sun is comfortably hiding behind thick rain-filled clouds, everyone is at home sicne no one could dare to go out. And what you have for lunch? Hot and steamy khichuri and may be along with it you'll have maach-bhaaja (fried fish) or plain brinjal fry or potato fries.

You tend to over eat at such times coz' it is suppose to be so nice with all those green peas and cauliflower florets melting in your mouth and if you are the kid of the family, you might be lucky enough to get that extra spoonful of ghee on top of your share of Khichuri.

Anyways, now getting back to the recipe. Here it goes...

Ingredients:

Gobinda Bhog Rice (small grained rice with aromatic flavor) – 1 ½ cups
Moong Daal – 1 ½ cups
Cauliflower – 1 medium sized, chopped into small pieces
Potatoes – 4 medium sized, diced in small pieces
Green Peas – ½ cup
Carrots (optional) – 3 medium sized, chopped
Beans (optional) – 5 to 6, chopped
Tomatoes – 3 medium sized, chopped
Green chillies – 4, sliced
Dabur Homemade Ginger paste – 1 ½ tsps
Whole white jeera seeds – 1 tsp
Whole dhaniya seeds – 1 tsp
Whole Red chillies – 2 to 3
Red Chilli powder – 2 tsp
Turmeric powder – 1 ½ tsps
Jeera powder – 1 tsp
Heeng – A pinch
Garam Masala powder – 1 tsp
Bay leaves / Tejpatta – 3 to 4
Mustard Oil for tarka
Pure Ghee – ½ cup
Salt to taste
Sugar – 1 tsp


How to make Khichuri (Khichri): Roast moong daal in a dry kadai till they are golden brown. Boil adequate quantity of water to boil rice in a big vessel. Add moong daal, let it boil and then add rice. When the rice starts boiling add the chopped and diced vegetables on by one and keep stirring. Add ginger paste. Stir. Add turmeric powder, green chillies, jeera powder, dhaniya powder, garam masala powder, a bit of sugar and salt to taste. Keep stirring. Cook till the vegetables and the rice is cooked till tender. Keep it in a low flame.
For tarka: Heat 4 tbsp of mustard oil in a a pan. When quite hot add bay leaves, whole jeera seeds. It will start to crackle. Add heeng. Add red chillies. Fry for a few seconds and immediately take it out from the flames and pour the whole thing along with the oil into the vessel full of rice. Stir the whole mixture well for few minutes. Take the Khichuri (Khichri) out of flame. Add ghee for better taste. Serve hot. Your Khichuri (Khichri) is ready to eat.

This type of Khichuri (Khichri) is a typically Bengali dish. We Bengalees eat this Khichuri (Khichri) with various types of fried vegetables like fried potatoes, fried brinjal, fried cauliflower, fried potol/parwal and so on.

You can also add fried fish like hilsa or rohu. We also eat a sabji we called labra with it along with chutney and papad. Khichuri (Khichri) can be best enjoyed during a rainy season. Imagine the scene, its raining heavily outside, everyone is at home, and what is the menu for lunch? Khichuri (Khichri) and fried fish or fried sabji along with labra. Believe me, there is nothing yummier than this!!!!! Simply irresistible.

Phuchka / Paani Puri - Tangy Delights


Hi, I am back. All you guys who had been eagerly waiting for my Bengali recipes, the wait is finally over. I'll start this sequel with the Phuchka.

What is a Phuchka? In hindi we call Phuchka, golgappa or pani puri - Phuchka in Bengali means when, the crispy small rounded fried puris, are broken in the middle there is a "phuch" like sound. From there the word comes. Its really yummy. Unlike other places in India where they pour peas or channa inside each puri, we pour a aalu mixuture. This aalu mixture is simply like a trip to heaven. Here we mix all the tikha and khatta masalas as well as channa and dhaniya. Now the details you'll find below:

For aloo mixture: The masalas for the aloo mixture are aamchur powder, jeera powder, red chilli powder, dhaniya powder, black salt, pepper, red salt and white salt. All these mixture are added to boiled smashed potatoes. Then they are mixed thoroughly. Then add chopped dhaniya, boiled channa daal (this channa daal is boiled with a dash of termeric and salt till they are soft and cooked), chopped green chillies and the last but the most important thing, tamarind paste (tamarind pulp soaked in water). Keep the mixture aside.

For the khatta water: Add tamarind pulp to water along with dhaniya, red chilli powder, salt, black salt, jeera powder. Mix well and let the water cool.

The small puris: You will get these puris at any bhuji shop. Its best to buy them instead of going through the hassle of making them. But still if you want to make them at home, here is what you'll have to do - Mix atta and sooji together in equal proportions, i.e, 1:1 ratio. Add a bit of salt and cooking soda to make the puris real crispy. Add water to make it into a dough. Make small balls and flatten them with a belan. Take a small round steel dhakkan of any container (with a diameter of maximum 2 inches) and cut out small round puris. Heat oil. Fry the puris one by one till they look like small crispy balls. Let them cool a bit.

How to serve: Take a crispy puri, make a hole in the middle with your thumb, pour in a bit of aloo mixture. Then dip the puri into the water mixture and serve it immediately.

Your yummy Phuchka is ready to eat.

Some information on Kolkata Phuchkas: The best Phuchka you will get is in Vivekananda Park (Kolkata). They are expensive but worth it. Another one is in Mudiali. But my favorite place is the Phuchka we get infront of Jadavpur University. Being a student of that place, we used to simply love it. Now I feel so nostalgic about it but still i make sure to go back to JU once in a while and get a bite or two of that marvelous mouth wateringly tasty Phuchka....

Kolkata Kuisine - Mouthwateringly Scrumptious

Before I start my actual article, I would like to mention two names who inspired me to put up this blog - my colleagues, Priya & Chanda.

This Blog is dedicated to all those Kolkattans residing outside Kolkata or India and who terribly miss Kolkata food.

Being a typical Bengali girl, born and brought up in Kolkata, I have always been attached to Bengali cuisine. With Bengali cuisine the first thing that comes to my mind is no doubt phuchka. Phuchka is what we call paani puri or golgappa in Hindi. (Dont forget to visit my next post for the phuchka recipe, coming soon). The rest of the fabulous Bengali dishes are luchi (puri), cholar daal (channa daal), radha ballavi (daal-puri), tomato chutney and last but not the least, ilish maach (hilsa) and kasha magsho (mutton).

Though I am not at all a fan of hilsa fish or maach, but most of the Bengalees are crazy about it. The various preparations of hilsa involve shorshe ilish, jhaal ilish, tel ilish, ilish macher pata-paturi, ilyash mach bajha and ilish maach bhaape.

Also there is a huge variety of other kind of fish like, rui maach, koi maach, magur maach, bhetki maach. Bhetki maach reminds me of bhetki maacher pata-paturi. Chingri maach is also a big delicacy here. Dont forget daab chingri and chingri macher malai curry.

Another two delicacies I think belongs to kolkata, and one is definitely rolls. Any kind of rolls - egg roll, mutton roll, chicken roll, egg mutton roll, egg chicken roll and so on.

The other thing that comes to my mind is fish fry, made from white bhekti fillet, deep fried after coated in bread crumbs. Well by now i am really feeling hungry you know.

Among dessert I must add maalpuha, patishepta, pulir pithe, rosogolla, sandesh, payesh, rabri, mishti doi, etc.

Kolkata's biriyani is also quite different from other states, since its more of a Murshidabadi biriyani. No one can ever forget mutton biriyani and chicken chaap of Shiraaz, once someone has got the taste of it.

Kolkata's cuisine is very special coz' its neither too spicy nor too rich. But before I end this blog here I must add that mustard oil is a must must must thing when you are cooking Bengali dishes. No matter how much we talk about white oil and cholestrol free sunflower oil, cooking shorshe ilish or kosha mangsho in anything other than mustard oil is simply unthinkable!!!! So all you guys and gals out there who are by now salivating to the hilt make sure you cook a typical Bengali dish at least once in mustard oil to refresh your tastebuds....
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