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 be cooked in vegetarian version as well, but, the mutton taste can be brought only if it is cooked in non vegetarian way. Here I want to mention that for Bengalis, anything that contains onion or garlic or both is considered to be non vegetarian.
Echorer Dalna is an age old recipe where “echor” is referred to as green unripe jackfruit. This is a must have dish in our house during summer, specially, around Bengali New Year. Maa cooks awesome Echorer Dalna and we all are madly in love with this dish. As a kid whenever I used to act oversmart, Maa used to call me “echore paka”. This is a very flamous Bengali saying which means a raw jackfruit has ripened before age. Such is the significance of “echor” in a Bong’s life 😀
Naboborsho aka Poila Boishakh aka Bengali New Year is arriving and Echorer Dalna has a significant place in order to mark this occasion. Few of my non Bengali friends asked me about what exactly we do in our new year. I actually took a long pause as I don’t recognize of doing anything else rather than eating. So I replied – we eat and only eat. Yes, we also do wear new cloths, but, mostly and mainly We Eat.
This year, to start my eating extravaganza, I have prepared Echorer Dalna exactly as Maa does. This recipe is almost same as Bengali Style Mutton Curry, just instead of mutton I have used raw jackfruit. Also, the taste and texture is almost same as mutton curry. Though the process of cutting raw jackfruit is tedious and tricky, but all hard work seems to be worthy when you have the final outcome. Oh, I love it so much with gorom gorom bhat (piping hot rice). Here’s the recipe for you all.
- 500 gm echor, cut into cubes
- 1 big potato, diced
- 1 tomato, chopped
- 1 big onion, finely chopped
- 5 green chillies, slitted from middle
- 2 whole garlic (cut the root and shoot part)
- 1 table-spoon ginger-garlic paste
- 1.5 tea-spoon turmeric powder (1/2 + 1/2 + 1/2)
- 1 tea-spoon cumin powder
- 1 tea-spoon coriander powder
- 1/2 tea-spoon Kashmiri red chilli powder
- 1/2 tea-spoon garam masala powder
- as required mustard oil to fry the veggies
- salt, according to taste
- 3 cup warm water
- 3 table-spoon mustard oil
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 cinnamon stick (1 inch approx)
- 5 green cardamom
- 5 cloves
- 1 jaiphal
- 2 star anise
- 1 tea-spoon cumin seeds
- Wash the echor properly and boil in hot water for 15-20 minutes. Do not cover the vessel with lid while boiling, keep it open.
- Discard the water and keep the echor aside.
- Heat oil in a pan and shallow fry the potato by adding 1/2 tea-spoon turmeric powder and salt. Remove and keep aside.
- Heat oil again and shallow fry the boiled echor by adding 1/2 tea-spoon turmeric powder and little salt. Remove and keep aside.
- Now, for tempering, heat 3 table-spoon mustard oil and temper with the ingredients mentioned in For Tempering section. Allow them to splutter.
- Add onion and sautè until it turns light golden brown.
- Add ginger-garlic paste, remaining turmeric powder, cumin powder, coriander powder, Kashmiri red chilli powder and salt. Sprinkle some water and stir fry the masala for 3 minutes.
- Now, add chopped tomato and stir until it gets blended.
- Add potato, whole garlic and echor. Give the whole thing a proper mix.
- Add water and cover the lid. On a low to medium flame, cook it for 25 minutes or until the veggies are nicely done.
- If you want more gravy then just add some more warm water and bring to a boil and also, cook for 5 minutes after that.
- Once the veggies are done and you have your required gravy, sprinkle the garam masala and give a quick mix.
- Turn the flame off and your Echorer Dalna is ready to be served now.
Serve this awesome and authentic Bengali dish with bhat (steamed rice) and don’t forget to squeeze a piece of gondhoraj lebu (lemon). It also goes very well with roti/chapatti/paratha.
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. Sobike janai Shubho Naboborsher Antorik Shubbhecha! (Wishing everyone a very Happy Bengali New Year).