Kadhi – Spicy Indian Yogurt Soup

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Stop me if I’m wrong, but in Indian cuisines, and by Indian cuisine I mean cuisines from all parts of the country, there are very few recipes which can be considered as soup. Kadhi, is one of those few dishes that can be considered as soup. You can have it warm and serve it with khichdi or cold as a soup.

Kadhi is a true Indian dish, I say this because, almost the same recipe is followed throughout India. The wiki page on kadhi says that its a Gujrati dish and is popular among people in the Northern states and also among Sindhis. But, while living in the Southern states of India I have had kadhi with the South Indian touch of tempered curry leaves.

Gujrati Kadhi

Gujratis, as I have learnt over the years love their sweets, so even in kadhis they like to add some sugar or jaggery to give it a hint of sweetness. Sindhis like some vegetables in the kadhi, the most popular being okra. Another very common kadhi preparation is kadhi with pakora. The pakoras are made by frying a batter of chickpea and onions, and are dropped in the kadhi.

Growing up in a Bengali family, I had my share of having kadhi for lunch in the summer. My mom used to, actually she still makes sour yogurt at home, everyday all through the year. And, when there is some extra yogurt left she makes the kadhi, but with a touch of Bengali spices in it.

Kadhi

Appetizer, Indian, Yogurt soup, Gujrati kadhi, Kadhi, Indian recipe, Indian spicy yogurt soup, Summer recipe
Cooks in    Serves 4
Ingredients
  • 1 cup sour yogurt
  • 3 tablespoon chickpea flour
  • ½ teaspoon ginger paste
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • 3 cups water
  • Salt to taste
  • For tempering:
  • 1 tablespoon mustard oil
  • ½ teaspoon black mustard seeds
  • 10-12 curry leaves
  • 2-3 whole dry red chilies
Directions
  • Take the yogurt is a large bowl and gradually add the chickpea flour to it, mix well so that there are no lumps. Pour the water a cup or less at a time and continue stirring. You can also add everything together and put it in a juicer for 10 seconds to get a good mix
  • Add all the ground spices and season with salt. Give it a good stir
  • Heat the oil in a saucepan, add the mustard seeds, as they start sputtering add the curry leaves and whole red chilies. Pour the yogurt mixture and cook till it just starts to boil. Lower the flame and cook for a minute more. Serve hot or cold.

Kadhi

Hot Tips – Be patient while mixing the ingredients together, mix well so that there are no lumps. It depends on how thick you want your kadhi you can add or reduce the amount of water, also note that that the kadhi thickens after cooling.

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Sunday Mutton Curry

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The grandfather clock on the old living room wall just stopped striking 11. Its a lazy Sunday morning and you’ve just finished your Sunday breakfast with luchi, cholar dal and sandesh. Already the dining room is filled with the smell of kasha mangsho from the kitchen. Now, this feels like a dream. The special meals of Sunday will always be missed, now that I’m thousands of miles away from home.

Pathar mangsho (goat meat) can easily be classified as a comfort food as well as an exotic Bengali dish. Some would say, why such a rich and spicy food be called comfort food. The answer is in the meal, garam garam bhaat (warm white rice) with pathar mangsho (mutton curry) and a slice of gandoraj lebu (lime)– do you want anything else from this world?

Goat Curry

Kolkata is always related to the wonderful rasogolla and sandesh it has produced for more than a century now. But, Kolkata is also famous for its goat meat curry. The mutton curry from Shyambazar’s Golbari is one of the best, or probably the best mutton preparation you can ever have. The rich and spicy dark mutton curry can easily be the highlight of your week.

Previously I had quite a disappointing result prearing mutton. Either it turned out chewy, and the second time I was engrossed in my TV series, and the mutton got burnt to the point where I had to use a knife to scrap out the pieces from the vessel. So, this time anxious and determined I set to prepare mutton. I marinated the mutton overnight and slow cooked it for almost a couple of hours. The results was just awesome!

Sunday Mutton Curry

Indian, Side, Comfort food, Bengali recipe, Authentic bengali recipe, Bengali cuisine, Mutton curry, Goat meat, Bengali mutton curry, Sunday mutton curry, Bangla recipe
Cooks in    Serves 4
Ingredients
  • 2 lb goat meat
  • For the marinade -
  • ¼ cup sour yogurt
  • 1 medium size onion, made to paste
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon dhaniya powder
  • 1 tablespoon ginger paste
  • 1 tablespoon garlic paste
  • 2 tablespoon mustard oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • For the gravy -
  • ½ cup grated raw papaya
  • ½ medium size onion, slivered lengthwise
  • 1 big size potato cut to quarters
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon dhaniya powder
  • 1 tablespoon ginger paste
  • 1 tablespoon garlic paste
  • ½ teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoon mustard oil
  • Salt to taste
  • Warm water
Directions
  • Mix all the ingredients except the turmeric, oil and salt of the marinade in a large glass bowl. Add the washed mutton pieces, and using your hand, coat the marinade evenly over the mutton. Add the turmeric and salt and give it another round of mixing. Pour the oil. Cover the bowl with a kiln film and marinate for at least 4 hours or you can also keep it overnight. Place it in the lower rack of your refrigerator
  • Take out the mutton about an hour before yous start cooking, and bring it to normal temperature.
  • Heat oil in a large wok. Coat the potatoes with a pinch of turmeric and salt and fry in that oil till the potatoes start to brown in places. Take the potatoes out and reserve for later.
  • Put in the slivered onions in the same oil and saute till they start wilting. Add the sugar and fry till the onions are caramelized. Now, add the marinated mutton and stir to coat with the oil and onions. Add all the spices and grated papaya and give it a good stir.
  • Increase the flame to high, and start reducing the marinade, stirring frequently. Make sure that the marinade doesn\'t stick to the bottom of the wok. The marinade will start to change color to a darker shade and so will the mutton.
  • Once the marinade is almost dry and dark, pour in 2 cups of warm water and cover the wok with a lid. At this point, you can also transfer the mutton in a pressure cooker, and cook in it.
  • If you are not using a pressure cooker, lower the flame to low and slow cook for almost 1 to 11/2 hour. Check in between.
  • Depending upon the mutton, the cooking time varies. Pour warm water as and when required. Once, the mutton is half cooked, add the potatoes and cook till the potatoes are done.
  • Serve hot with warm white rice or luchi.

Golbarir Mangsho

Hot Tips – Mixing turmeric and salt together with the other spices in the marinade makes the mutton harder and it becomes a chewy when cooked. Papain, the enzyme release from raw papaya help to cook the mutton and make it softer. Also, the grated papaya gives an extra thickness to the gravy. The trick to cook mutton is to cook it over low flame.

Other LinksMutton Curry from eCurry, Railway mutton curry from BongMom

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Curried Potatoes and Capsicum

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Winter is almost over, and so are the winter vegetables. Even though you get all vegetables all year through but to have one during its original time of harvest means a lot to me. Capsicum is one of them. I love capsicum. The subtle taste of chili in capsicum and of course its smell drives me crazy.

alu capsicum 1

Potato with capsicum is a very North Indian dish. But, it feels great to have this rich and spicy curry in a cold winter evening. You can pair it with chapatis or parathas, or just have it with warm white rice and dal.

Alu Capsicum Tarkari

Indian, Side, Winter recipe, Capsicum curry, Potato curry, North indian side dish, Vegetarian recipe
Cooks in    Serves 2
Ingredients
  • 1 large potato
  • 1 capsicum
  • ½ of medium size onion
  • 1 tablespoon cumin seeds
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon mustard oil
  • Salt to taste
Directions
  • Chop the potato and capsicum to one inch size pieces.
  • Heat oil in a wok, add the cumin seeds, as the seeds start sputtering throw onions and fry till they turn translucent, 1-2mins.
  • Add the potatoes and toss to coat the oil
  • Add the turmeric and chili powder, season with salt. Fry for 1-2 minutes till the spices turn a shade darker
  • Pour in water and cook covered till the potatoes are half done. Add the capsicum now and cook till the vegetables are cooked.

alu capsicum 2

Don’t forget to send in your entries to Holi event and Giveaway and get a chance to win vouchers from Flipkart sponsored by CupoNation.

Holi - The Festival of Colors Event Logo

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Posto Bhaja – Fried Poppy Paste

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Every day when you see the sun setting over the Hudson there seems to be a part of your heart which sails away to those sunsets over Princep Ghat. While still I’m starting to groove to the American way of life, every cell within me drags me to those dusty roads of Kolkata.

While the chicken teriyaki tastes good, and the brownies softer than ever, I still miss the alu posto and the soft warm rasogollas. Talking about posto, the only thing over which the Ghotis and Bangals never fight or do they?

The ways in which poppy is used in Bengali recipes is just uncountable. Bongs can kill for their soul alu posto. The soft bite sized potatoes cooked in gravy of poppy paste –  will surely tickle all your taste buds. Posto goes with alost all vegetables, another very popular posto preparation is the posto begun. Chicken is also cooked in thick gravy of poppy and cashew nut.

When it comes to poppy the way you can cook it is innumerable. But, posto also is a killer when its all by itself. The posto vada or the posto bati is a common first course for almost all Bengali household. An easier version of the posto vada is the posto bhaja. It gets prepared in minutes and you can enjoy it with just war white rice.

Posto Bhaja

Indian, Side, Authentic bengali recipe, Posto bhaja, Poppy paste fry
Cooks in    Serves 4
Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup poppy seeds
  • 3-4 green chilies, chopped coarsely
  • 2 cloves of garlic chopped coarsely
  • 1/4 size small onion, chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 tablespoon mustard oil
  • Salt to taste
Directions
  • Dry grind the poppy seeds to fine powder in a coffee grinder. Soak with salt and turmeric in 3 tablespoons warm water
  • Heat oil in a skillet. Saute the onion and garlic. Add the poppy paste and green chili.
  • Fry till the paste is little dried and the color changes to a darker shade
  • Serve hot with warm white rice as a first course

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Kancha Muger Dal – Raw Yellow Lentil Soup

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When it comes to vegetarian recipes, Bengalis have countless options to serve. Even though we are branded as the fish loving and fish eating class, there is not a single household who does not have a purely vegetarian dish to serve for each meal, and dal is one of the most important.

 Masoormoongchola, urad and the numbers are unending, even the style you cook the same dal is different. When you need to serve it to guests, of course the plain and simple everyday dal takes a extravagant form like the macher matha diye moong dal. But, for the everyday chores the light yet flavourful dal is the choice.

As the rains pour down and wash the streets the search for something spicier than the ordinary masoor dal comes to play. And, what better than to have fried ilish with warm white rice and moog dal.

  

Kancha Moog Dal

Indian, Side, Moog dal, Authentic bengali recipe, Yellow lentil soup, Bengali dal recipe
Cooks in    Serves 4
Ingredients
  • 1 cup moog dal/yellow lentil
  • 2 1/2 cup warm water
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger paste
  • 2 dried bay leaves
  • 2-3 red chilies, roughly chopped (optional)
  • 1/4 teaspoon edible soda (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon mustard oil
  • Salt to taste
Directions
  • Wash the lentils and drain out the excess water
  • Warm the water in a sauce pan and pour in the dal, cook till the dal is well cooked. Add more water if the dal tends to dry out.
  • In a skillet heat the mustard oil and add the red chilies. Saute till they turn a little darker in shade, take out and keep aside for garnishing
  • In the same oil throw in the cumin seeds and bay leaves, as they start sputtering add to the cooked dal
  • Add all the spices to the dal and season with salt. Cook for 2-3 minutes more. Serve garnished with the fried red chilies.

Hot Tips – when cooking any type of dal its better to add the salt when the dal is properly cooked, salt slows down the cooking process. If you are in a hurry, you can add the edible soda to cook the dal quickly.
Moog dal  can also be roasted  before boiling, it gives an added flavor and texture to the dal, but roasted moog dal is harder to digest than the non-roasted version.

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Radhuni Diye Masur Dal – Red Chief Lentil with Wild Celery

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Lentils are most of the most popular sources of protein for vegetarians or vegans. Though for some weird reason, we Bengalis consider the red chief lentil or masoor dal as non-veg. I have searched, but didn’t get any answer to that. Do you know why?

Masoor dal is one of the most commonly used lentils in our home. These salmon red color beauties low in fat and high in protein – they are just the choice for the daily dose of lentils.

If you are just a few days old in the kitchen, masoor dal is just the one to woo at the dinner table. It’s very easy to cook, and take less time. You can cook masoor dal with fried onions or just with some radhuni. Radhuni is a strong spice, a couple of pinches can overpower your curry. Radhuni can be substituted with celery seeds. This dal is best had with any fries, alu chokha or even a simple omelet.

Masoor Dal with Celery

Indian, Side, Bengali recipe, Masoor dal, Musur dal, Red lentil, Radhuni recipe
Cooks in    Serves 2
Ingredients
  • ½ cup red chief lentil, washed and drained
  • 3 cups of water
  • ½ teaspoon radhuni
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2-3 green chilli
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
Directions
  • Boil the water in a saucepan, and pour in the washed masoor dal. Let it cook for 10-15mins, till the dal is completely boiled
  • Pour in the salt, turmeric powder and throw in the green chillies. Give it a stir and take out of flame.
  • Heat the oil in a small pan, throw in the celery, as the seeds start sputtering pour it over the cooked dal. Transfer the saucepan over low flame and cook for two minutes more. Serve hot with roti or rice accompanied with fries or alu chokha.

Hot Tips- Dal takes longer to cook with salt or acid in it. So, add the salt after the dal is cooked.

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Mulo Saag Bhaja – Radish Green Stir Fry

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Bengalis try to use the maximum of anything that comes of the grocery back, and that includes eating peels of vegetables to stir frying the greens. Lau-er khosha bhaja (stir fried Indian gourd skin) is one of Bong delicacies. Even patol khosha boiled and grinded and then stir fried with a little onion seeds has its share of authentic Bengali recipe in Bengali cuisine.

Coming to leafy vegetables, there is a place for almost every type of edible leaves in the Bengali kitchen. The leaves of potato plant is one of my favourites, though it’s hard to find in any market, unless you are growing potatoes in your yard.

While palang shag (spinach) or the pui shag (climbing or Malabar spinach) are very common side dishes for the Bengali lunches, mulo shag though rare is a class of its own. The radish leaves are cooked in various ways, you can simply stir fry them with some mustard and onions or even add a little brinjal cubes and sliced radish.

Mulo Shaag Bhaja - Radish Green Stir Fry

Indian, Side, Radish green stir fry, Leafy vegetable, Authentic bengali recipe, Bengali stir fry
Cooks in    Serves 2
Ingredients
  • 2 cups Radish leaves
  • ½ cup chopped onion
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 3-4 red chilis
  • 1 tablespoon mustard oil
  • Salt to taste
Directions
  • Wash the radish leaves thoroughly to get rid of any mud. Chop the leaves finely
  • Heat the oil in a wok, throw in the mustard seeds as they start spluttering add the onions and fry till the onions turn translucent
  • Add the chopped radish leaves, turmeric powder, salt and stir fry.
  • Serve hot with warm white rice

Hot Tips – Take care while adding the salt. The leaves reduce in volume after frying, if you are not sure how much salt to add, add it once the leaves are almost fried and reduced.

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Macher Matha Diye Mung Dal – Yellow Lentil with Fish Head

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Since I came to US, I had been travelling. All thanks to Kalyan and his job, I had visited 5 states in a span of 3 months. The latest was a visit to the city of dreams – New York City. It was a 8 day trip with work for K and travel for me, and I made the best use of the time. Travelled almost every part of the city from Harlem in upsate New York to the Liberty Island down South. Tasted the roadside pretzel (which I hated, sorry to say), chicken gyro, hot dogs and also the different cuisines in the much talked about restaurants of Manhattan.

Even though everything seemed so awesome and the food tasted so great, something was missing. I figured it out this afternoon after coming back home. The missing part was home cooked food – warm rice with moog dal and begun bhaja (aubergine fries) and tilapia jhal. Whether its psychological or just that your taste buds are used to the food you have grown up with, nothing beats home cooked food.

Yellow lentil or moog dal is one of the many dals cooked in every Bengali household. To start with moong dal can be cooked either directly boiled and sautéed with your spice of choice or roasted, boiled and then sautéed with spices. The roasted version definitely tastes better, but those with digestion problem should leave that apart. You can cook mung dal using just cumin seeds, cumin powder and ginger paste or make it rich and spicy putting in some fried fish heads.

Macher Matha Diye Moog Dal

Indian, Side, Moog dal, Yellow lentil, Bengali fish recipe, Bengali dal
Cooks in    Serves 4
Ingredients
  • 1 cup moog dal
  • 2 ½ cups warm water
  • 1 fish head, deep fried
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1 teaspoon ginger paste
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 tablespoon mustard oil
  • Salt to taste
Directions
  • Pour the unwashed lentils in a thick bottom sauce pan and roast till the lentil turns a light shade of brown. Take out of the flame and wash. Pour in the warm water and salt; boil till the dal is cooked. Add extra water if the dal tends to dry out.
  • Add the deep fried fish head to the dal
  • Heat a skillet, pour in the oil. Temper with whole cumin seeds. As the seeds starts sputtering add to the boiled dal. Add in the spices, ginger paste and cook for 5-7mins more
  • Serve with warm white rice and fries of choice.

Hot Tips – Roasting the dal is optional, you can directly wash the dal and boil it. Moog dal tends to absorb a lot of water, so make sure there is enough water even after the dal is fully cooked.

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Kumro Chingri Boti – Shrimps in Mashed Pumpkin

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Kumro or pumpkin is one of the most used vegetables in Bengal. From just boiled pumpkin with a dash of mustard and salt with warm white rice or chachori (type of Bengali curry) – it has its grand position. Generally pumpkin is used in vegetarian curries, but exceptions make the rule. A post in BongMom Cookbook website compelled me to try this recipe.

If you are somewhere outside India, I think getting hold of a nice sweet pumpkin is little tough unless you visit an Indian store. So, you can try the same with butternut squash. I was trying to search for the difference between squash and pumpkin. Though they fall under the same family in the plant kingdom, the difference is in how the stalk is attached to the fruit. The pumpkin has a bright orange skin with woody stem, while the squash is lighter and stem is soft and spongy. Coming to the taste, they are almost similar.

The word boti is probably a borrowed word in the Bengali dictionary. It means while preparing the dish you need to chop the vegetable in small bite sized cubes. Any other comments on how the “boti” word evolved, do share it with us.

On a sidenote, Mother’s Day is coming up on 13 May and if you want to gift your mom something customized, try VouchersMate.

Kumro Chingri Boti

Indian, Side, Pumpkin, Bengali recipe, Shrimp curry
Cooks in    Serves 2
Ingredients
  • 200gms buttenut squash or pumpkin, cut to bite size pieces
  • ½ cup chopped onion
  • ½ cup shrimps (10-15 pieces)
  • 1 teaspoon panchphoron
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 2-3 green chilli, slit from the middle
  • 2 tablespoon mustard oil
  • Salt to taste
Directions
  • Clean and devein the shrimps, you can use the video below for help, mix these with a pinch of turmeric and salt
  • Heat a skillet and pour about half the mustard oil. Fry the shrimps till lightly pinkish in color, Strain out the excess oil with a kitchen towel and keep for later use
  • Heat the other half of oil, throw in the panchphoron and onion, fry till the onions are translucent. Add the pumpkin or butternut squash cubes
  • Add the turmeric powder, green chilli and season with salt. Fry for about 2-3 minutes. Pour in about 1 cup of lukewarm water. Cook covered till the pumpkin is almost cooked, pour extra water if required
  • Add the shrimps and cook uncovered for a few minutes more. Serve with warm white rice.

Hot Tips – here’s a video on how to clean prawns or shrimps

From other blog – You can try the kumro chingri boti from BongMom’s site.

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Poila Baisakh Special – Kumro Fuler Vada

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Kolkata Knight Riders vs Deccan Chargers – it’s the IPL match today at Eden gardens, Kolkata, and am on way to watch it. After a long gap of 15 years, I am going to watch a match at Eden. The mishap in ‘96 World Cup semi finals compelled me to stop going to cricket grounds. But, a box ticket and the idea of sitting close to King Khan (read Shah Rukh Khan) compelled me to give it a shot.

Its Monday and probably most house holds stick to the no non-veg on Monda regimes, so thought of picking up a vegetarian recipe for today, an authentic Bengali recipe for Paila Baisakh series (check out the Tel Koi in this series) – fritters of pumpkin flower (kumro ful) is one of the most special vadas in Bengali cuisine. The flower dipped in a batter of gram flour with its crunchy yet smooth taste appeals to everyone.

Ingredients:

  • · A dozen pumpkin flowers
  • · ¼ cup tablespoon rice flour
  • · ½ cup gram flour
  • · 1 teaspoon nigella
  • · 1 tablespoon mustard oil
  • · Sunflower oil for deep frying

Preparation:

  • · Take out the anther from the flowers and wash well
  • · Mix all the ingredients except the oil for frying with 2 cups of water. The batter should be runny
  • · Heat the oil in a frying pan or wok
  • · Dip each flower in the batter and deep fry separately
  • · Once done, wrap the flowers with a kitchen paper to absorb the extra oil
  • · Serve hot with rice and dal

Check for more Bengali style bara (vada) – Bombay Duck fritter, Macher Dimer Vada

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Ilish Paturi in Microwave

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Yes, we bled blue. After 28 years of wait, at last the world cup came back once again to India. The excitement and thrill was at its peak. Just as Dhoni played the shot the last 6, the dream for Sri Lanka was over. The entire country rejoiced. Just before the match, the roads seemed to be deserted like in during strikes, but the scene changed just after that last shot. It seemed the entire city has come out – age no bar – every body was on the road sharing their bit of joy. Here’s one click from the roads, for more click on to Chak De India album.

To share this joy here’s a simple recipe from us – ilish paturi in microwave. Paturi literally means cooking something wrapped in fresh leaves, generally plantain. The mkicrowave recipe is a simple and quick one without any hassle. Click for more hilsa recipe.

Serves 8
Preparation 5 mins
Cooking 8 mins

Ingredients:

  • 8 pieces of ilish/hilsa
  • 8 pieces of 6” square plantain leaves
  • ½ cup mustard seed paste
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 8 green chillies
  • 4 tablespoon mustard oil
  • Salt to taste
  • Kitchen thread for wrapping

Preparation:

  • Clean the fish, mix all the spices; season with salt
  • Pour the oil generously over the fish
  • Wrap each piece with plantain leaf and tie with the kitchen thread
  • Place the pieces on a microwave safe plate
  • Micro high (100% /  800 watts) for 6-8min
  • Serve hot with warm rice

Hot Tips – Before wrapping, roast the leaves for a minute to make them soft and easier to fold. The fresh leaves tend to break along the veins. While wrapping make sure that no part of the fish is outside the leaf, which will make it very dry.

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Guest Post: Oler Kofta Curry

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While you may heard of having chicken kofta or mutton kofta or may be the raw banana kofta, kofta prepared with yam (ol in Bengali) is quite an unique preparation. When Suchismita posted this recipe in Cook Like a Bong Facebook page, I just couldn’t help myself but request her to use it as a guest post here.

Koftas originated from Middle East, it being a variation of the more known meatballs in the Western countries. As the preparation touched the Indian shores, each state started turning this meat preparation into a different. The Bengalis were at pace and you can find a varied version of koftas ranging from potatoes to paneers and from mutton to beef.

Ingredients:

For kofta:

  • 200gms yam or ol
  • ¼ cup gram flour
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon chopped ginger,
  • 1 teaspoon chopped garlic,
  • 1 tablespoon chopped green chilli or red chilli powder,
  • ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
  • ½ teaspoon whole garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon sugar,
  • Salt to taste

For curry:

  • 1 large potato, cut into 1” squares
  • 1 medium onion, sliced
  • 1 teaspoon ginger garlic paste,
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric powder,
  • 1 teaspoon red chilli powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 2 Bay leaves
  • 1 tomato, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon sugar,
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 teaspoon ghee,
  • ½ teaspoon garam masala powder

Preparation:

For kofta:

  • Boil the yam in water, mash the boiled yam
  • Add the chopped onion, chopped ginger, chopped garlic, chopped green chilli ba icche hole red chilli powder, sugar, and salt and mix well
  • Roast the cumin and garam masala, and grind to a fine powder
  • Sprinkle the roasted spices to the mashed yam, add the gram flour
  • Make a dough
  • Make small balls of this dough
  • Heat oil in a wok and deep fry the yam balls, take out and drain out the excess oil using a kitchen paper

For curry:

  • Half fry the potatoes and keep aside
  • Throw in the bay leaves and cumin seeds in the same oil, as the seeds start sputtering add the onion, and sauté
  • As the onions turn brown, put in the ginger garlic paste, chopped tomatoes, red chilli powder, turmeric powder, sugar. Fry till the oil separates
  • Add the potatoes
  • Pour in about 2 cups of warm water
  • Season with salt, cook covered
  • As the potatoes get cooked, add the koftas and cook for some more time
  • Sprinkle the garam masala and pour in the ghee
  • Take out of the flame, and serve hot

I’m a little confused with the actual English for ol/wol. If you know please share.

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What to have for Holi

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Its already Holi time and nothing much to say. Here are some authentic Bengali recipes that you can try out for this doljatra.

Breakfast:

Lunch:

Desserts and Chatni:

To search for more recipe click to All Recipes.

Wish you all a very Happy Holi!!! Play safe and don’t forget to share your Holi pics and memories with us.

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Posto Paneer Kofta

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Spring is here and so are the thousand colors of nature. Every nook and corner of the street is filled with red, yellow, orange blossoms. Though with the heat rising in Kolkata, there’s not much feel good feeling about this time of the year but still there is a grand festival coming up in just a few days from now. Yes you have guessed it right, its HOLI time. Holi, the National Festival of India is celebrated throughout the states of the sub-continent and West Bengal too is not far behind. The main attraction of holi, or doljatra (as we Bengalis like to say) is the Boshonto Utsav or Spring Festival in Shantiniketan. Thousands gather at the Viswa Bharati grounds on the day from all over the world.

Thinking of colors, the first thing that comes to mind is red, green, blue and yellow.  Remember those days in school, the houses had these names and everybody used to fight with the other houses – Yellow, yellow dirty fellow or the first love letter you wrote – roses are red, violets are blue, sugar is sweet and so are you. Do you have any other such poems or phrases, you used to throw, then share it with us!

Paneer balls prepared in poppy and sesame gravy

Thinking about a colourful preparation I scratched my head but nothing authentically Bengali came to mind. So, thought of mix matching the Western with the Eastern. And, there it is the result – paneer kofta in thick poppy paste with slices of red and yellow bell pepper to spice and color it up.

Ingredients:

For the kofta:

  • 400gms of paneer or cottage cheese, mashed finely
  • 4 teaspoon gram flour or besan
  • 1 tablespoon ginger paste
  • 2 teaspoon chilli powder
  • ½ teaspoon sugar, preferably brown sugar
  • Sunflower oil for frying
  • Salt to taste

For the gravy:

  • 4 tablespoon poppy seeds
  • 1 tablespoon sesame, ground to a fine paste with the poppy
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 2 red and yellow bell pepper diced coarsely
  • 2 tablespoon sunflower oil
  • Few black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon clarified butter or ghee (optional)
  • Salt to taste

Preparation:

  • Mix all the ingredients required for kofta excepting the oil and make a soft dough
  • Prepare small balls each having a rough diameter of 3cm
  • Heat oil in a wok and deep fry these balls in batches, keep aside
  • Heat a wok with 2 tablespoons of fresh oil, throw in the cumin seeds, as they start sputtering add the bell pepper and toss for a minute or two
  • Add the turmeric powder and season with salt and black pepper
  • Pour in the poppy and sesame paste and cook till the oil separates
  • Cover the gravy with 2 cups of water and stir well, cook covered for 10-12mins, check the seasoning
  • Put in the fried koftas as the gravy starts boiling, cook for 2-3min more and take out of flame
  • Serve hot with chapattis or rice

Hot Tips – Koftas tend to dry up the gravy, so if you are a gravy person try putting in more water or else, take out the koftas after cooking and serve the gravy and koftas separately.

Further Reading – Bengali Style Matar Paneer, Palak Paneer with a Twist

 

 

 

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Dudh Shukto

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Bengalis mostly live to eat, and with the scores of spices we use to prepare food each day, it’s really important to have something soothing and less spicy to nullify the effect of all these rich food. Shukto is an answer to all these questions. This typical Bong favorite is a concoction of all seasonal vegetables.


A Bengali lunch is never complete without Shukto. Shukto can loosely be compared to the Western culture of having soup before starting the main course. Though, Shukto is totally different from soup, it’s always made with vegetables chopped in large pieces and best tastes with warm white rice. There are many variations of shukto, and it depends on the availability of the vegetables, but the most popular is dudh shukto (vegetables cooked in milk). Before saying anything more about this classical Bengali preparation I should warn you, bitter gourd is one of the must have ingredients in this preparation. Even if you hate that bitter vegetables, I’m sure if you have shukto once, you’ll definitely ask for more.

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup each of potato, sweet potato, papaya, carrot, beans, string beans, green banana chopped to 1” size pieces
  • Drumsticks cut to 2” length
  • 10 – 12 Bodi
  • ½ cup of bitter gourd, cut to small round-shaped bite size pieces
  • 4 tablespoon of mustard oil
  • 1 teaspoon clarified butter (optional)
  • 2 Bay leaves
  • 2 tablespoon panch phoron
  • 1 tablespoon wild celery
  • 1 tablespoon mustard seeds
  • ½ cup milk

Preparation:

  • Heat 2 tablespoon of mustard oil and fry the bodi and bitter gourd separately, keep aside
  • Pour in rest of the oil and throw in half the spices (panch phoron, wild celery, and mustard seeds), as they start sputtering add all the vegetables except the fried bitter gourd
  • Sprinkle a little water
  • Cover and cook till all the vegetables soften. Stir once or twice in between
  • Heat a thick bottom skillet and roast rest of the spices, grind them to fine powder and mix with the milk
  • As the vegetables get cooked pour in the spice mixed milk, fried bodi, bitter gourd and pour in the ghee

Hot Tips – The trick to prepare shukto is cutting the vegetables, so while chopping the vegetables always try to keep the pieces almost the same size. Panch phoron is a concoction of fenugreek, fennel, wild celery, nigella and mustard seeds in equal proportions.

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