Tag: assam

Sattu Paratha / Traditional Bihari Sattu Paratha

Sattu Paratha / Traditional Bihari Sattu Paratha

I have never been to Bihar, but I have a huge gang of Bihari friends. One of my Bihari friends actually introduced me to this very delicious traditional Bihari dish named, Sattu Paratha. Since then, I have been preparing this dish often and I just […]

 
Pathar Mangshor Jhol / Kochi Pathar Jhol (Bengali Style Mutton Curry)

Pathar Mangshor Jhol / Kochi Pathar Jhol (Bengali Style Mutton Curry)

“Bajare kochi patha pawai jay na ajkal” (it’s hard to get tender mutton in the market now-a-days) says Baba. Instantly Maa replies “eto deri kore bajare gele ki kochi patha boshe thakbe tomar jonne” (you will not get tender mutton if you go so late […]

 
Chanar Daler Puli Pitha (Bengali Split Chickpea Dumplings)

Chanar Daler Puli Pitha (Bengali Split Chickpea Dumplings)

Back home, this Pitha is a must during Poush Sankranti (Makar Sankranti). Believe it or not, this is my Baba’s specialty. Maa usually prepares all other Pitha, but when it comes to Chanar Daler Puli Pitha, no one can beat Baba. From very childhood, I have been making this Pitha with Baba and learned all about it from him. Even today, if I get confused with the proportion, I just call Baba and ask him – he never fails to give the best advise.

Poush Sankranti is always a grand celebration for us. My otherwise not-doing-household-work Baba becomes hyper active at this time of the year. Recently Baba was diagnosed with heart blockage and had to undergo Angioplasty. Since then, he has many restrictions in his diet and he literally bid adieu to his very favourite Pitha-Puli. But, this could not stop him from celebrating Poush Sankranti. Keeping the tradition intact, Baba still prepares Pitha and welcomes guests with full zeal. Always positive and always active, Baba brings smile to everyone and has great skill of hospitality.

This year, I made so many Pitha and PayeshGokul Pitha, Kheer Komola, Patishapta, Dudh Puli, Patali Gurer Payesh, Manda Pitha, but, Poush Sankranti is incomplete without Chanar Daler Puli Pitha. This is the last Pitha for this Sankranti that I made it on the very day of Sankranti.

The recipe may sound very easy, but all it needs to have a good understanding of the proportion and that comes from practice. Chanar Dal (Bengali split chickpea) being the main ingredient, does the magic and all purpose flour acts just as the binding agent. So, while mixing these two, just make sure that the proportion is correct – too much all purpose flour will make the Pitha hard and will effect the taste. Here’s how I made it.

Ingredients:

For The Stuffing:

  • 1.5 cup grated coconut
  • 3/4 cup grated patali gur (date palm jaggery)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cardamom powder

For The Dough:

  • 1.5 cup Bengali split chickpeas
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour (maida)
  • 1/2 tea-spoon salt

For Frying:

  • As required refined oil for deep frying

For The Syrup:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2.5 cup water

Method:

  • Soak the chickpeas overnight. Pressure cook it for 2 whistles. Let the pressure cool down completely.
  • Meanwhile, heat a pan and add all the ingredients mentioned in For The Stuffing section. On a low flame, stir until the ingredients mix properly and the coconut is little fried.
  • The stuffing should be sticky such that if you compress, it should stick together. Once it’s done, add ghee and give a quick mix. Remove it from the flame and keep aside.
  • Now, take out the boiled chickpeas for the pressure cooker. Drain the water and rub the chickpeas with a clean cloth to absorb the extra water. The more you absorb the water, the less you need to mix all purpose flour. The dumplings will become super soft this way.
  • Make a fine paste of the boiled chickpeas. The paste will be thick and tight and that is ok.
  • Add all purpose flour and salt with the chickpea paste (as mentioned in For The Dough section) and knead a smooth dough.
  • Note: don’t use extra water to knead the dough. The moisture present in the chickpea paste is sufficient enough.
  • Once the dough is done, cut small balls from the dough. With the help of your fingers, press the balls to make bowl shapes.
  • Now, stuff them with coconut stuffing and seal the edges to make half moon shaped dumplings. If possible, make design on the edges by curving them with your fingers.
  • Once the dumplings are ready, keep them aside.
  • In a pan. heat sufficient oil for deep frying. Pour the dumplings and deep fry till they turn golden brown.
  • Remove them to a tissue paper spread vessel and keep aside. Allow them to cool down to the room temperature.
  • Again, in a heavy bottom pan, add the ingredients mentioned in For the syrup section and bring it to a boil by stirring it. Lower the flame and cook it until the sugar gets dissolved and the consistency is little thick.
  • The syrup should be rather runny and not too thick.
  • Turn off the flame and cool it down to the room temperature.
  • Once, both the dumplings and the syrup cool down to the room temperature, submerge the dumplings into the syrup and keep it for 2-3 hours.
  • The Chanar Daler Puli Pitha is ready to be served now.

This is a melt-in-mouth Pitha and tastes great with or without syrup. Traditionally, it is made with sugar or jaggery syrup, but, if you don’t like syrup, you can have it dry as well – it tastes great both the ways. A little understanding of the proportion and a little trick and you will make it like a pro 🙂

Enjoy Chanar Daler Puli Pitha with your loved ones and don’t forget to drop me a comment telling how you like it. You can also tag me on Instagram by using the handle @when_a_bong_cooks. Happy winter and Happy festivities!!!

 
Patali Gurer Payesh / Khejur Gurer Payesh (Bengali Rice Pudding with Date Palm Jaggery)

Patali Gurer Payesh / Khejur Gurer Payesh (Bengali Rice Pudding with Date Palm Jaggery)

It’s a sweet affair. When heart longs for sweet and it’s winter, nothing can be more satisfying than a bowl full of Patali Gurer Payesh. This is not just a dish, but a long lasting Bengali tradition that every Bengali relish wearing their full sleeve […]

 
Chaler Patishapta

Chaler Patishapta

I am obsessed with Pitha-puli and this Poush Parbon I am literally on my toe. Friends are visiting almost everyday and with all new demands. Today morning one of my friends called me and demanded for Patishapta. I usually make normal one, one with all […]

 
Manda Pitha with Cinnamon-Ginger Twist

Manda Pitha with Cinnamon-Ginger Twist

Manda Pitha is Odisha’s traditional pitha which is made of rice flour and is steamed with coconut filling. Singh Aunty introduced this pitha to Maa and since it is super easy to prepare, Maa makes it often. Just with some basic ingredients, this is a super delicious option if you are looking for a real quick recipe of pitha. Maa learned it from Singh Aunty and I learned it from Maa.

From past few days, I have been preparing Pitha with jaggery syrup (Gokul Pitha) and milk (Dudh Puli). Today, I though of trying something different and that very moment the idea of Manda Pitha clicked. I called Maa and got a quick brush up. But, my inquisitive mind was restless and thinking of doing something different. And as the outcome of this restlessness, I dared to give this traditional recipe a twist. My intention was to create a new variation of this super tasty Pitha and I think, I did the justice. My twist is very simple – I have just added cinnamon powder and grated ginger – and these two basic ingredients have made it completely different in taste.

Here’s the recipe of my Manda Pitha with Cinnamon-Ginger Twist:

Ingredients:

For Stuffing:

  • 1.5 cup grated coconut
  • 3/4 cup patali gur (date palm jaggery)
  • 1 tablespoon grated ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ghee

For The Dough:

  • 1.5 cup rice flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon powder
  • hot water (as required to knead a soft and smooth dough)

Method:

  • Heat a pan and add all the ingredients mentioned in For Stuffing section (except ghee). On a low flame, stir until the ingredients mix properly and the coconut is little fried.
  • The stuffing should be sticky such that if you compress, it should stick together. Once it’s done, add ghee and give a quick mix. Remove it from the flame and keep aside.
  • For the dough, mix all the ingredients as mentioned in For The Dough section together and knead a smooth dough.
  • Cut small balls from the dough. With the help of your fingers, press the balls to make bowl shapes.
  • Now, stuff them with coconut stuffing and seal the edges to make stuffed round dumplings.
  • Boil water in the steamer. Once the water starts boiling, lower the flame.
  • In a greased steamer pan, place the dumplings and cover the lid. Steam the dumplings for 15 minutes.
  • After 15 minutes, check if the dumplings are properly cooked. Check the dumplings and if they are sticky, it’s not done. In that case, steam for another 5-6 minutes.
  • Check again by touching the dumplings. If your finger comes clean, the Pitha is done.

Serve it hot and enjoy this traditional Odisha delicacy with my twist 🙂 I hope you will like it.

Don’t forget to drop me a comment telling how you like it. You can also tag me on Instagram by using the handle @when_a_bong_cooks. Happy winter and Happy festivities!!!

 

 
Dudh Puli / Kheer Puli

Dudh Puli / Kheer Puli

I love making Pitha, decorating them, styling them and offering them to God – somehow, I feel divine, I feel enlighten. No, I am not a religious person, but the beauty of these cultural rituals fascinate me and I participate with all my heart and […]

 
Gokul Pitha

Gokul Pitha

Back home, when I was a kid, every Poush Sankranti (Makar Sankranti) we used to visit Pishimoni’s place or she used to come over with her family – both ways, Poush Sankranti had to be nothing but grand. Maa and Pishimoni used to sit together […]

 
Muri Ghonto (Bengali Fish Head Curry with Rice)

Muri Ghonto (Bengali Fish Head Curry with Rice)

Back from a long vacation and my mach pagla Bangali mon (fish loving Bengali mind) started craving for some fish, some rice and some spices. As I can’t think of staying away from my kitchen and from fish for so long, a 10 days long vacation without fish is obviously little too much for me 😛 So, today morning I rushed to the local market and bought some fresh Rohu fish. By afternoon, I again wore my apron and entered kitchen like a Knight in Shinning Armour 😀 and then what – I prepared the dish where I could use exactly the three things I was craving for – fish, rice and spices. I prepared the quintessential Bengali mishmash with fish head, rice and spices and we the Bengalis call it “Muri Ghonto”.

The word muri came from Muro, which means Head and Ghonto means a Mishmash Curry. This dish also reminds me of a North Indian friend of mine who asked me once – Tum log machli ka seer bhi khate ho? (you guys eat the fish head also?) and I proudly replied – Seer se leke punch, kuch bhi nehi chorte hum (from head to tail, we don’t spare a single part of it). Bengalis love their fish and eat every part of it – from head to tail and Muri Ghonto is an age old preparation and a hot favourite of every Bengali non-vegetarian kitchen. Usually, it is cooked with the aromatic Gobindobhog rice, but if that is not available you can replace it with Basmati rice as well.

 

Here’s how I cook Muri Ghonto at my kitchen. The recipe is as follows:

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium sized fish head
  • 3/4 cup gobindobhog rice (or basmati rice)
  • 1 big sized potato, diced
  • 1 big sized onion, finely chopped
  • 5-6 green chillies, slit for middle
  • 1 tea-spoon ginger paste
  • 1 tea-spoon garlic paste
  • 2 cinnamon sticks (dalchini)
  • 5-6 green cardamom (elaichi)
  • 5-6 cloves (laung)
  • 2 star anise (chakra phool)
  • 2 bay leaves (tej patta)
  • 2 dried red chillies
  • 1/2 tea-spoon whole cumin seeds (gota jeera/sabud jeera)
  • 2 tea-spoon turmeric powder (haldi)
  • 1 tea-spoon cumin powder (jeera)
  • 1 tea-spoon coriander powder (dhaniya)
  • 1/2 tea-spoon red chilli powder (or as per your tolerance)
  • 1 tea-spoon sugar
  • salt (according to taste)
  • 1/2 tea-spoon ghee
  • 4-5 table-spoon mustard oil

Method:

  • Heat a pan and dry roast cinnamon sticks, cardamom, cloves and star anise. Remove from the pan and keep aside.
  • Rub the fish head with 1/2 tea-spoon turmeric powder and some salt. Fry the head properly and keep aside.
  • Rub the potato pieces with 1/2 tea-spoon turmeric powder and some salt. Shallow fry the pieces and keep aside.
  • Heat ghee in a pan and shallow fry the rice adding 2 pinches of turmeric powder for 1 minute. Remove the rice from the pan and keep aside.
  • Heat 3-4 table-spoon oil in a pan and add cumin seeds, roasted spices, dried red chillies and bay leaves. Allow the spices to splutter.
  • Now, add the chopped onion and green chillies. Sautè until the onion turns translucent.
  • Add ginger-garlic paste, cumin powder, coriander powder, turmeric powder and salt and stir for a few seconds on low flame.
  • Now, add the fish head and mix very well with the spices. Cook the head with the spices by stirring constantly until it gets crushed properly.
  • Add the rice and potato and give a quick mix.
  • Now, add 2 cups of warm water, mix well and cover the lid.
  • Cook it on low to medium flame for 10 minutes or until the rice and potato get cooked well. Check the salt, if it is less, you can add now.
  • After 10 minutes, check if it is well cooked. If not, you can add 1 cup warm water more and cook for another 5 minutes.
  • Once the rice is well cooked and the water gets absorbed, add sugar and mix well.
  • Turn off the flame, cover the lid and let it set for 10 minutes. Your Muri Ghonto is ready to be served now.

 

Serve it with hot steamed rice to enjoy a complete authentic Bong meal. While eating, you can add little ghee if you want – this will enhance the taste further, but it is completely optional.

Do try this dish at home and don’t forget to drop me a comment telling how you like it. Happy eating!

 
Narkel-er Jaam Pitha

Narkel-er Jaam Pitha

This time of the year – when the sky is full of fireworks, your house deck up with lights and diyas and your heart dance with the smell of festival in the air – it’s the best time to create some sweet memories. Diwali is […]