Homemade sandesh (fudge) is pure nostalgia. Any festival or any occasion, sandesh is a must almost in every Bengali household. We make variety of sandesh that includes narkoler sandesh (coconut fudge), chhanar sandesh (cottage cheese fudge) and khirer sandesh. Sandesh is not actually something that […]
Tag: kolkata style
Often cooked with Golda Chingri (jumbo prawn), this malaikari or malai curry can be cooked equally well with small or medium sized prawn as well. This is a royal and rich dish with coconut milk that plays the trick. This dish is creamy and flavorful and […]
On a hot summer afternoon, Maa just put a pan full of milk on the stove top to let it boil. Soon after Maa literally screamed in anguish “issh, sob dudh fete gelo…bhebechilam payesh banabo…sob dudh fete gelo” (thought of making rice pudding today but alas, the milk got curdled). This sometimes happen during summer. You just want to boil the milk and it gets curdled. Maa gets annoyed very easily when these things happen. She went on saying “dhur ajker ranna o sesh, chhana ta rekhe dei, kalke chhanar dalna baniye nebo” (I done with the day’s cooking. I will better keep the chhana today and tomorrow I will make Chhanar Dalna). Pishimoni smiled and said “chhana ta amake dao, ami bacchader jonne mishti baniye debo” (give the cheese to make, I will make sweets for the kids). Maa replied “issh tumio paro, tomar shotti dhorjo ache go” (you truly have patience).
Hearing of mishti (sweet), the next scene was me and my sister running after Pishimoni and poking her “chhana diye ki banabe?” (what will you prepare with the cheese). Pishimoni smiled at us and said “chhanar jilapi khabi? khele baniye debo” (will you eat chhanar jilapi? if yes, I will make it for you). We both the sisters were like “ha khabo, ha khabo…ekhoni banao” (yes yes…make now only). Pishimoni set with the cheese and started kneading it with other required ingredients and said “bhalokore dekhe shikhe nao, boro hole nije banate parbe” (see how I make it and learn properly…you can make by yourself when you grow up). Both of us set in front of her and started observing the process very minutely. Honestly speaking, we were not that much into learning, but, waiting her to finish early so that we can start gulping 😛
After that day, this sweet often used to be on our demand list whenever we used to visit Pishimoni’s place or she used to come over. We often used to finish it in one go. Maa is not that much into sweets, but, Baba used to accompany us. Time passed by and we grew up. Pishimoni is no more. I sometime make Chhanar Jilapi and whenever I do, I remember Pishimoni. She was a magician with God gifted culinary skills. Baba often say that I make better sweets than Maa and I have the traits of Pishimoni in me. Whatever I have learned from Pishimoni, I treasure everything close to my heart.
Coming to Chhanar Jilapi, this is a traditional Bengali sweet which is made of cottage cheese. This is a deep fried, melt-in-mouth cottage cheese knot that gets its sweet taste after being immersed in a runny sugar syrup. It can be served both hot and cold, though, hot is always what I prefer. With very few ingredients, this sweet tastes heavenly and is not that tough to make.
Bengali New Year aka Poila Boishakh is arriving and like many other Bengali houses, my house decked up with new decorations and my kitchen with some sweets and non vegetarian preparations. Today I made Chhanar Jilapi for some friends who came over. This is definitely going to be on my Poila Boishakh party menu as well. Here’s the recipe for you all.
- 1 litre full fat milk
- 3 table-spoon lemon juice
- 2 table-spoon maida (all purpose flour)
- 1 table-spoon sooji (samolina)
- 1/2 tea-spoon baking powder
- 2 pinch salt
- 1 pinch saffron soaked in 1 table-spoon warm milk
- 2 cup sugar
- 3.5 cup water
- as required oil or ghee for deep frying (you can mix both in equal proportion)
Making Chhana (cottage cheese)
- In a pan, heat the milk and bring it to boil. Turn off the flame.
- Immediately, add lime juice and mix. You will observe that water starts separating from the fat. Your Chhana (cottage cheese) is done. Let it cool down.
- Drain the water to get the chhana. Pour the chhana on a cotton cloth and squeeze to drain the excess water.
- To completely drain the water away, tie the cloth and hand for atleast 1 hour.
Making Chhanae Jilapi
- Take the chhana in a mixing bowl and knead to a soft and smooth dough.
- Now, add maida, baking powder, sooji, salt and the saffron soaked milk. Knead the entire thing properly for 10-15 minutes to a soft and smooth dough. Once it does not stick to your hand, the dough is ready.
- Remember, kneading is the key. The more you knead, the more soft and smooth your jilapi will be. Once
- Cover the dough with a cloth and let it rest for 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a heavy bottom pan, heat water and add sugar. Heat it constantly in high flame until the sugar gets dissolved, water gets reduced and the syrup comes to 1 string.
- Once the syrup is done, keep it aside and let it cool down a little bit.
- Now, take the chhana dough and cut small balls from it. The given quantity of ingredients should give you 7-8 pieces of jilapi.
- With the help of your palm, roll out long ropes out of the chhana balls and swirl them in circular jilapi (jalebi) pattern.
- Now, heat oil ghee (or both mixed together) in a pan and deep fry the jilapis until they turn reddish brown.
- Pour the hot jilapis immediately to the syrup once they are fried.
- Soak the jilapis in syrup for atleast and hour or so. Your Chhanar Jilapi is ready to be served.
You can consume them immediately or can store them in refrigerator for 2-3 days. But, Chhanar Jilapi always tastes when served hot.
Enjoy this authentic Bengali delicacy and do drop me a comment giving your feedback about this recipe. You can also tag me on Instagram using the handle @when_a_bong_cooks.
Echorer Dalna or Kancha Kathaler Torkari is my summer favourite dish. Kancha Kathal (raw jackfruit) is also called “gach patha” (tree goat) in Bengali as, if cooked to perfection, the taste can actually substitute mutton. One must try it to believe it. Though, it can […]
Posto Murgi or Posto Chicken is a delectable Bengali traditional dish. Bengalis love posto and it has been used in a wide range of our vegetarian and non vegetarian dishes. Posto Murgi has a mild taste and is a complete bliss if you have this with gorom bhat (steamed rice). It is always a hit in my home and I cook it often. Two chicken dishes my family can’t live without are Posto Murgi and Murgir Jhol and I cook both the dishes pretty well 🙂
Posto or poppy seed has a special place in Bengali cuisine and a must have in my kitchen. Maa uses posto to cook mainly the vegetarian dishes and one of such dishes which is her specialty is Sheem Posto. However, I prefer to use posto in every possible way – I am a bid time fan of these seeds. Today’s dish is what I have childhood memories associated with. Pishimoni used to cook awesome Posto Murgi and I used to call it “shada shada murgir jhol” (white white chicken curry).
Growing up, this “shada shada murgir jhol” had been a part of my summer holiday meals as I used to spend the holidays at Pishimoni’s place. I remember Pishimoni pushing me to take bath and get ready for lunch. I hardly listen to her and hide inside my doll house. Then Pishimoni throws the ultimate weapon to me – “snan korbi na? shada shada murgir jhol ranna korechi” (will you not take bath? I have cooked posto murgi?). The tremendously naughty me gets obedient in the blink of an eye and follows all the instructions given by Pishimoni just to have my favourite chicken curry as early as possible.
I have learned this dish from Pishimoni and often recreate her magic at my kitchen. Also, this is a completely hassle free dish and the taste is guaranteed. So, if guests are at home and you are not sure of what to cook that your guests are going to love – this is the dish for you. Let’s have a look at the recipe.
- 1 kg curry cut chicken
- 2 table-spoon mustard oil
- 3 table-spoon yogurt, whisked
- a paste of 10 garlic cloves + 1 inch ginger + 3 green chillies
- 1/2 tea-spoon turmeric powder
- 1 tea-spoon coriander powder
- 1 tea-spoon cumin powder
- 1 tea-spoon Kashmiri red chilli powder
- 1 table-spoon mustard oil
- salt, according to taste
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 5 green cardamom
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 star anise
- 2 dried red chillies (broken to half)
- 1/2 tea-spoon fennel seed
- 1 big sized onion, finely chopped
- 4 table-spoon poppy seed paste
- 1 cup warm water
- salt, according to taste (if required)
- a handful chopped coriander leaves
- Wash the chicken and marinate with all the ingredients mentioned in “For Marination” section for 3 hours. If you want, you can marinate for long time than this, the longer the better.
- Heat mustard oil in a pan and temper with the ingredients mentioned in “For Tempering” section. Allow them to splutter.
- Now, add chopped onion and sautè until the onion turns golden brown.
- Add the marinated chicken and give a quick mix. If the salt in the marination is not enough for you, this is the time when you can add extra salt.
- Cover the lid and lower the flame. Allow the chicken to cook in its own moisture for 15 minutes.
- Open the lid and add the poppy seed paste and mix very well.
- Add water and again give a quick mix. Cover the lid and cook for another 10 minutes on medium flame.
- Open the lid and add chopped coriander leaves. Turn off the flame.
- Your Posto Murgi is ready to be served now.
Serve this dish hot with gorom bhat (steamed rice) and experience the bliss. This is a no fail recipe and will definitely make your meal delightful. Posto Murgi also goes very well with roti/chapatti/rumali roti.
Do drop me a comment giving your feedback about this recipe. You can also tag me on Instagram using the handle @when_a_bong_cooks.
Chicken Chaap is traditionally a Mughlai dish brought to Bengal by the Mughals straight from Awadh. A large portion of Bengal’s traditional non vegetarian Muslim dishes have Awadhi influence on them and thanks to the Mughals for that. A lot of Mughlai dishes got a […]
Mete is the Bengali word for liver (chicken or mutton) and chorchori usually referred to a dish that is stir fried with minimum or no gravy. Mete Chorchori is a traditional Bengali delicacy which is prepared often in Bengali households with great love and care. […]
This is Maa‘s absolute favourite recipe. Maa loves moong dal (yellow lentil) and back home, this is the most popular dal that she cooks often. I am not a big fan of moong dal, though, don’t mind having it sometime. Simple and plain moong dal is too boring for me, rather, I like masoor dal that way. I like masoor dal in any form, but, the thing is not same with moong dal. For me to like moong dal, the recipe has to be very interesting. So, this is the recipe that Maa used to cook for me to make me eat moong dal. Now, this is the only moong dal recipe that I cook often in my kitchen and yes, I do love it. Though, I give some twist of my own to make it more interesting and adding coconut is one of them.
Moong dal is considered as niramish (vegetarian) dal in Bengalis, whereas, masoor dal is amish (non-vegetarian). Moong dal is usually prepared with no onion and garlic. This recipe that I am going to write today contains fish head, but yet, no onion or garlic are added. Macher Matha diye Bhaja Moong Dal is a traditional Bengali dish and is one of the delectable non-veg makeover of this veg dal.
Bengalis cook moong dal in two ways – kancha (raw) and bhaja (fried). While both the forms are super tasty and healthy, bhaja moong has a different aroma and goes very well while cooking with fish. For bhaja moong dal, the lentil is dry roasted before cooking and it’s truly aromatic.
Packed with many amazing health benefits, moong dal is rich in fiber and protein and is excellent for keeping cholesterol under control and thus giving your heart a long life. This lentil also helps to keep the blood sugar level in control and a very rich source of antioxidants. Also, if you are looking for weight loss and healthy skin, moong dal is definitely your thing.
I love fish head and use it often to prepare dishes. I have few recipes of fish head in my blog and you can check them out. Today’s recipe of Macher Matha diye Moong Dal is protein packed, aromatic, healthy and highly delectable. Bongs love this dish and it goes excellent with bhat (rice). Adding coconut to it is my twist and is completely optional, yet, recommended. Here’s the step-by-step recipe for you all.
- 1 fish head and 1 tail piece (any fish, I used Rohu)
- 1 cup moong dal
- 1/3 cup chopped coconut
- 5 green chillies, slitted from middle
- 1.5 tea-spoon turmeric powder
- 1/2 tea-spoon cumin seeds
- 2 cinnamon stick (each 1 inch)
- 5 cloves
- 5 green cardamom
- 1 inch ginger (finely chopped)
- 2 table-spoon mustard oil
- 2 table-spoon ghee
- 5 cup water
- salt, according to taste
- Rub the fish head and tail with 1 tea-spoon turmeric powder and salt.
- Heat oil in a pan and shallow fry the pieces very well. Remove and keep aside.
- In an separate heavy bottom pan, dry roast the moong dal until aroma starts spreading. Remove and keep aside.
- In the same pan, dry roast the chopped coconut until it turns little brownish. Remove and keep aside.
- Now, heat water in the same pan and bring to boil.
- Meanwhile, wash the roasted moong dal 2-3 time in normal water and make it ready.
- Once the water is boiled, add moong dal, green chillies, 1/2 tea-spoon turmeric powder and required salt. Cover the lid and lower the flame. Cook for 15-20 minutes.
- After the stipulated time, open the lid and check the dal. The dal should be cooked and broken by the time. If the find the dal has thickened too much, this is the time when you can add some more water (warm water).
- Now, add the fish head and tail and mix well. Cover the lid and cook in medium flame for another 10 minutes.
- You can open the lid in between and bread the head and tail with your spatula into small pieces. I break the tail into small pieces but, prefer not to break the head too much. The choice is yours.
- After 10 minutes, open the lid and add chopped coconut. Give a quick mix. Cover the lid and cook for another 5 minutes.
- Turn off the flame and keep the dal aside.
- In a separate small pan, heat ghee and temper with cumin seeds, ginger, cinnamon, cardamom and cloves. Stir for 1 minute and turn off the flame.
- Immediately, pour it to the dal and mix well.
- Cover the dal and let it rest for 5 minutes.
- Your Macher Matha diye Bhaja Moong Dal is ready to be served now.
Serve it hot with piping hot rice (gorom bhat) and enjoy this Bengali delicacy with your family. This should not go very well with roti/phulka as the dish contains lot of fish bones. As I say always, squeeze a piece of lemon while eating to enhance the taste.
Enjoy this authentic Bengali delicacy and do drop me a comment giving your feedback about this recipe. You can also tag me on Instagram using the handle @when_a_bong_cooks. Happy eating!
As Holi is arriving, I was thinking of what could be my first pick for this festival. I truly love this festival of colours and participate in it every year with all my heart. But, what Holi means to me is not just playing with […]