Today is Saptami and we the Bengalis consider this day to be the official start of Durga Puja; it’s also the 7th day of Navratri which is dedicated to Goddess Kalaratri. It is believed that Goddess Durga took her Kalaratri avatar on this day to kill Asur (demon) Sumbha and Nisumbha. Where in some parts of India Navratri (or Durga Puja) is celebrated with full vegetarian food, Bengalis indulge themselves in full on non-veg items. Various fishes, Chicken, Mutton are very commonly cooked in Bengali houses during Durga Puja – it’s a gala time to feast 🙂
I, being a fish lover, was wondering since yesterday about what special to cook today and suddenly the very thought of Prawns came to my mind. Rushed to the local market this morning and grabbed some fresh prawns and decided to start my Durga Puja with a delicious treat.
This recipe is Chingri Posto where the prawns are cooked in a thick paste of poppy seeds and the taste and aroma are beatific. This is a relatively easy recipe that you can serve with confidence and grace to your guests. So, here is it.
- 500 gms prawns
- 1 big sized potato, diced
- 1 tomato, chopped
- 4-5 table-spoon poppy seeds
- 2 table-spoon mustard paste
- 1 big sized onion, roughly chopped
- 4-5 green chillies, roughly chopped
- 1 tea-spoon ginger paste
- 1 tea-spoon garlic paste
- 1 tea-spoon cumin powder (jeera)
- 1/2 tea-spoon turmeric powder (haldi)
- 2-3 dry red chillies
- 1/2 tea-spoon fenugreek seeds
- 4-5 table-spoon mustard oil
- salt (according to taste)
- Marinate the prawns with little turmeric powder and salt for atleast 1 hour.
- Make a fine paste of the onion in a grinder.
- Mix the poppy seeds and mustard seeds together and soak for atleast 1/2 an hour.
- Now, make a fine paste of poppy-mustard seeds adding the green chillies.
- Heat oil in a pan and shallow fry the diced potato adding little turmeric powder and salt. Once the potato pieces are little soft, remove from the oil and keep aside.
- Heat oil again and shallow fry the prawns. Once the prawns turn golden, remove from the heat and keep aside.
- Again, heat oil in the same pan and add red dry chillies and fenugreek seeds, saute for 30 seconds.
- Now, add onion paste and ginger-garlic paste. Saute till the paste becomes little concentrated.
- Add the chopped tomato, cumin powder, turmeric powder and salt. Keep stirring until the tomato blends.
- Now, pour the poppy-mustard gravy and stir well.
- Add 1 cup of warm water, mix well and cover the lid. Lower the flame and bring it to a boil.
- Open the lid and slowly add the prawns and potato, mix well with the gravy. Check the salt (if less, add some more) and cover the lid again.
- Lower the flame and cook it for 10-15 minutes or until the prawns get cooked well.
- Turn off the flame and your Chingri Posto is ready to be served now. Remove it in a serving vessel.
Serve this with hot steamed rice and enjoy with your friends and family 🙂 Happy Festivities!!!
Take a good photograph and post on your Facebook and Instagram wall tagging @whenabongcooks 🙂 Happy eating!