Sanoli's Kitchen: Bengali Cuisine
Showing posts with label Bengali Cuisine. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Bengali Cuisine. Show all posts

Monday, December 30, 2013


The banana tree is one of those few species where each part is used in some way, be it the leaves which are used for eating food or wrapping food, the fruit which is eaten in the form of raw or ripe, the flower or stem which is also consumed. The stem is cooked in various ways in South Indian Cuisine and in West Bengal. It is rich in fiber and helps in weight loss. It also helps prevent high blood pressure and maintain fluid balance within the body. It is used prevent and treat kidney stones. 'Thor' is tender inner part of 'Banana Plant'. Plantain stem or banana pith or thor is a very popular ingredient in Bengali vegetarian cuisine. In my childhood days, oftenly seen this recipe was made by my Grand Ma. This is an extremely delicious dish. Chopping 'thor' is treaky and really time consuming task. My Ma used to make 'Thor Chenchki' or 'Thor Ghonto', I relished those recipes, but this one is a very special and toothsome dish which I love the most.


1 ft Long Banana Pith / Stem (Thor)
1/2 Cup Gobindo Bhog Rice / Kalo Jeera Rice / Basmati Rice
1 Cup Warm Water
1/2 tsp Cumin Seeds
1 Whole Dried Red Chilli
Whole Garam Masala (1" Cinnamon, 2 Cloves)
1 Bay Leaf
3/4 tsp Ginger Paste
1/2 tsp Cumin Paste
1/2 tsp Turmeric Powder
1/2 tsp Red Chilli Powder (as per taste)
1/2 tsp Cumin Seeds (paste)
1/2 tsp Coriander Powder
Few Cashew Nuts
Few Raisins
2 tbsp Clarified Butter (ghee)
1 tbsp Oil
Sugar to taste
Salt to taste


Wash and clean banana stem nicely. Chop it finely or in very tiny cubes and soak it in water. Mix turmeric powder and little salt with it (otherwise they will turn black like chopped potatoes) and set it aside for 30  minutes.
Wash rice nicely. Heat 1 tsp clarified butter in a pan. Add rice, fry slowly for 2-3 minutes and keep it aside.
Add oil and remaining clarified butter in the same pan / wok. Slowly fry cashew nuts and raisins, remove from oil and set it aside.
On the same pan / wok, add cumin seeds, bay leaves, whole dried red chili and garam masala. Saute for few seconds. Add ginger and cumin paste, lower the heat now and keep stirring for a minute or two.
Drain water completely from banana stem by squeezing it nicely and add it to the pan/wok. Cook it in low heat till the water completely evaporates.
Now add fried rice, cashew nuts, raisins and 1 cup warm water in it. Fold well and cook till rice is tender. (Finally, rice and banana pith need to look seperate from each other)

Serve warm with plain steamed rice. Enjoy this toothsome Bengali delicacy.
Sending to:  Lets cook Christmas party food Favorite Recipes: Christmas Recipes 2013 Let's cook for Christmas event "Eat Vegetables Stay Healthy" &  JUSTEAT
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Saturday, December 28, 2013


'Mocha' or banana blossom is one of a complex Bengali cooking dishes which brings out a flavour of rural Bengal. Fresh rains of earth, drooling paddy field and the green ponds; a true smell of a Bengali life is now coming in mind. 'Mocha Ghonto' or stirfried banana flower is a common dish in each and every Bengali household. But this recipe I came to know from my great Grand Ma, she cooked this dish very efficiently and still today it is memorable to all of us, the very traditional and exceptional dish of kofta curry made with banana blossom and shrimp. A mouth watery, very delectable dish from my Grand Ma's kitchen is here for you..............


1 Medium Banana Blossom (mocha)
300 gm Small Sized Shrimp
1 tbsp Ginger Paste
1 tbsp Garlic Paste
1 tsp Coriander Powder
1 tsp Red Chilli Powder
1/2 tsp Turmeric Powder
4 tbsp Gram Flour (besan)
1/2 tsp Garam Masala
2 tbsp Corn Flour
Salt to taste
2 tbsp Oil + Oil for frying

1/2" Cinnamon, 2 cloves, 2 Green Cardamom (for tempering)
1 Large Onion (paste)
1 Large Tomato (pureed)
2 tbsp Beaten Yogurt / Curd
1 tsp Poppy Seeds
4-5 nos Cashewnuts
2 Green Chilli
1/4 tsp Turmeric Powder
1/2 tbsp Red Chilli Powder
1/2 tbsp Coriander Powder
1/2 tsp Garam Masala
1/2 tbsp Sugar (for flavour)
1 tsp Clarified Butter (ghee)
1 tbsp Finely Chopped Coriander Leaves / Cilantro (optional)
3 tbsp Oil
Salt to taste


First of all, clean banana blossom and chop it finely. Set it aside.

Pressure cook banana blossom with very little oil and turmeric powder and cook till 2 whistles. let is cool down naturally. Squeeze out as much water as possible and keep it aside.

De shell and devein shrimp.

Take shrimps in a grinder and give a quick pulse to crush them.

In a pan heat 2 tbsp oil. Add ginger and garlic paste in it, saute till raw smell disapprears. Add crushed shrimp in it. Fry for 2 minutes (will see shrimp are crumbled). Now add coriander powder, red chilli powder, turmeric powder and garam masala. Fry nicely.

Add boiled banana blossom and salt in it. Fold nicely and fry for 3-4 minutes till everything incorporated very well. Switch off heat now. 

Add gram flour in it and mix well.

In a bowl, mix corn flour with 1/2 Cup water to make a smooth batter. Keep it aside.

Make into small balls, dip balls in corn flour batter and deep fry in oil till golden.

When done, remove from oil and drain on paper towel. Koftas are ready now.

Grind poppy seeds, cashewnuts and green chillies to make a smooth paste. Set it aside.

Heat 3 tbsp oil in a kadai. Temper with cinnamon, cardamon and cloves. Saute for few seconds, till spices turn into light brown. Add onion paste in it.

Saute for 3-4 minutes on medium heat, till onion turns into golden. Add tomato puree in it. Fry till oil comes out from it.

Add coriander powder, red chilli powder, turmeric powder, garam masala and sugar. Fry for a minute.

Mix cashewnut and poppy seeds paste and fold nicely for 2 minutes.

Pour curd in it, mix thoroughly. Add 1 cup warm water and salt in it. Cook for another 5 minutes on medium heat.

Add coriander leaves and clarified butter. Remove from heat now.

Arrange koftas on a tray or bowl, pour this delicious gravy on it. Delectable kofta curry is ready to serve with plain rice or pulao.
NOTE: If you want to add potato in gravy, can add potato also. For that fried potato cubes before and add it at the time of adding water in it.
If you are in hurry to make koftas, then you may mix boiled banana flower, shrimp, spices, salt and gram flour all together and mix it well by using hand. Make koftas with it. But if we saute everything in little oil, then the raw smell of shrimp goes away and koftas will be more tasty and flavourful.
I used corn flour batter to dip koftas before frying, thats why koftas will be more crispy, crunchy and tasty.
Except gravy, this kofta is a very incredible snack. You may serve it as a starter or side of a main course.
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Friday, December 27, 2013


Goalondo Chicken curry / Steamer curry or boatmen style chicken curry is a very special dish made with fresh chicken and basic spices. This chicken curry used to be made by the muslim boatmen on these river routes. Ofcourse, there were very limited resourses to make the chicken curry in boat or steamer. So this chicken curry usually made with fresh basic un-ground spices.
(Picture of Goalondo Ghat in undivided Bengal) Photo Courtesy: Google
Here is a brief on the importance of 'Goalundo Ghat' in earlier years: "If one goes from Calcutta to Dacca the rail journey is broken at Goalundo and from there to Narayanganj is continued by steamer. The night mail from Calcutta deposits one at Goalundo in the early hours of the morning. It is situated at the junction of the Padma (branch of the Ganges) and the Brahmaputra. Daily services of steamers connect it with the railway systems at Narayanganj and chandpur, and with the steamer services to Madaripur, Baisal, Sylhet and Cachar.(from wikipedia)


500 gm Chicken, Cut into Medium Sized Pieces
1 Cup Chopped Onion
2 tsp Minced Ginger
1&1/2 tsp Minced Garlic
5-6 Chopped Green Chilies (according to taste)
3/4 tsp Turmeric Powder
4 tbsp or 1/4 Cup Mustard Oil
Salt to taste


Clean and wash the chicken nicely, drain water completely and make it pat dry.
In a wok or frying pan, combine chicken, ginger, garlic, onion and turmeric powder. Mix well. Set it aside for atleast an hour.
Add oil and stir over medium heat for 5 minutes.
Now add green chilies and salt in it. Cover and cook about 30 minutes on medium heat or till the chicken is tender. Stir occassionally. Turn off heat now.
Serve Goalondo chicken curry with warm steamed rice.

TIPS: Ginger, green chilies and garlic need to be fresh to get the                exact flavor of spices.
          No water is used in this recipe.
          Except Mustard oil, no other cooking oil is to be used for 
          getting the   authentic taste.
Sending to: Cook with Comfort ~Blog Anniversary EventFavorite Recipes: Christmas Recipes 2013 Lets Cook for ChristmasHoliday Recipes ~ 3rd Blog Anniversary Event

Wednesday, November 27, 2013


Today's recipe is a traditional Bengali dish, very healthy and filling side dish made using ash gourd and lentils, tempered with cumin seeds and bay leaves. Being grown on creepers, ash gourd has the highest life force which helps in making our meditation practice more effective. It is generally cultivated for its nourishing and medicinal values. In India it is well known as 'Petha', contains lots of minerals and vitamins. It is broadly used for making sweets. Ash gourd juice is highly recommended for maintaining general good health and in curing many deseases. It is very comfortable and delicious side dish with rice, pickle and papad.


750 gm Ash Gourd (petha)
1/2 Cup Yellow Moong Dal
2 Bay Leaves
2 Red Chillies
2-3 Green Chillies (chopped)
1/2 tsp Cumin Seeds
A pinch of Asafoetida
1/2 tsp Turmeric Powder (optional)
3-4 tbsp Clarified Butter (ghee)
Salt to taste
Sugar to taste
Chopped Coriander Leaves for garnishing (optional)


First cut ash gourd from the middle and cut into wedges. Peel the ash gourd by using a knief or peeler and deseed. Cut into 1&1/2" thin slices as shown in the picture below. Set it aside.
Dry roast moong dal for 3-4 minutes, till it turns into golden brown and a nice aroma comes out. Keep it aside.
Heat clarified butter in a kadai. Add asafoetida, cumin seeds, bay leaves and green chillies. Saute till cumin seeds lightly changed its colour.
Add Chopped ash gourd in it. Stir for 2 minutes followed by adding roasted yellow moong dal in it. Mix nicely. Add turmeric powder and salt in it. Cover and cook for 10-12 minutes. Ash gourd releases lots of water and it is getting cooked in its own juice. Keep stirring occassionally.
Add broken red chillies in it. Fold well. Cook uncovered till all water evaporates and oil comes out from the sides. Mix sugar in it. Keep frying for 3-4 more minutes. Switch off the heat now.

Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve hot with steamed rice. Its delicious!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013


A very traditional, popular and quick rice dish is Peas Pulav. This tasty, delightful, little spicy one pot meal goes well for lunch box or picnic which can be made within 20 minutes. You may have it in any lazy day or when you think for Basmati rice, it is a great delicious option for that. Can be served with any tomato based gravy or raita or simply with curd.......its always superb!


2 Cups Basmati Rice
1 Cup Green Peas
2 Bay Leaves
1/2 tsp Caraway Seeds
1/2 tsp Cumin Seeds
1/2 tsp Turmeric Powder
2 tbsp Coriander Powder
1 tsp Garam Masala Powder
2 Onions, Cut into thin slices
6-8 Green Chillies (according to taste)
2" Ginger
2 tbsp Oil
1 tbsp Clarified Butter (ghee)
Salt to taste


Wash rice nicely. Soak it in water for 30 minutes. Drain water completely and set it aside.
Dry grind green chillies and ginger in mortar and pestle.
Heat oil in a large pan. Add bay leaves, cumin seeds, caraway seeds in it. Saute for few seconds. Mix sliced onions in it and fry till onion turns into golden brown. Add turmeric powder, fry for a minute. Add pounded green chillies and ginger in it, saute for a minute till raw smell of spices disappear.
Add coriander powder and garam masala in it. Mix well. At this time, add soaked rice in it and fry for 3 minutes on medium heat.
Pour 4 cups of warm water, peas, clarified butter and salt in it and fold well. When water starts to boil, cover with a lid and lower the heat now. Cook for 15 minutes. Switch off the heat now. Open lid after 6-8 minutes.

A nice aromatic peas pulao is now ready to serve.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013


This one is such recipe which can never be tired to cook this Chicken Curry. It is such a favourite dish which I made often is enjoyed by our friends and family. As usual Indian spices are used in this curry, only the special thing is fried onion grinded with yogurt and green chillies used while cooking.

500 gm Chicken, cut into medium sized pieces
3 Onions (sliced)
1 tbsp Ginger Paste
2 tbsp Garlic Paste
3 tsp Coriander Powder
1 tsp Kashmiri Red Chilli Powder
4-6 Green Chillies (as per taste)
1/2" Cinnamon, 2 Cloves, 2 Green Cardamoms (roughly crushed)
100 gm Plain Yogurt (curd/dahi)
3 tbsp Oil
1 tbsp Clarified Butter (ghee)
1 Cup Warm Water
Salt to taste

Heat oil and clarified butter in a wok. Add sliced onion in it. Fry till onion turns into golden brown. Set it aside and let it cool.
Grind fried onions with yogurt and green chillies to make a smooth paste.
Add crushed garam masala (cardamoms, cinnamon, cloves) to the same oil. Stir for a minute till a nice aroma comes out. Add chicken pieces in it. Fry well till chicken turns into golden brown. Remove from heat and keep it aside.
Add ginger-garlic paste in the same oil. Stir for a minute, add coriander powder and kashmiri red chilli powder in it. Fry for 2 minutes till raw smell of spices gone.
Mix onion-yogurt paste in it. Fold well for 3-4 minutes.
Add fried chicken pieces in it. Keep stirring and mix everything for 2-3 minutes. 

Add salt and a cup of warm water in it. Cover and cook for another 10 minutes on medium heat or till the chicken is tender.

Serve warm with roti, paratha, naan, pulao or simply with plain steamed rice.
For Original Recipe: CLICK HERE