Saturday, 20 January 2018

FRESH ORANGE JUICE & SEMOLINA HALWA





Oh I had something else on my mind for today's share, then I thought if someone is taking pride on one of their creation at the moment, let me not interfere.... we can share it later. Let us have some FRESH ORANGE JUICE & SEMOLINA HALWA instead. Anyway, we are "Bangal" hailing from the other side of Bengal, we do not have the ritual of "Sheetal Shashti" a day after the D-day.... Off course it is a big day for us tomorrow... its Saraswati Puja.... the Goddess of Art & Learning makes an yearly visit at our homes at this time of the year! At our home, the mother never missed it and is still going on with the ritual.... This year there is no puja happening at that home.... the father left us. I do not find any logic behind this.... he so much loved inviting his club associates for a "prasad" on such days. Anyway, since the daughter is married to another family, there is no hard and fast rule for her .... again there is a why so? here too but not in the right mood for any kinds of argument, so she will go ahead with all the Saraswati Puja rituals! This beautiful lady who plays the Beena / Veena had been very unkind to me till date, yet I go ahead with pleasing her to my best capability..... hoping the offspring should not turn in to a hopeless case like his mother. You can well imagine how busy I am today and tomorrow.... and what a bliss our Cristine is.... She fries the moong dal for the "Khichuri Bhog", continuously stirs the milk for the "rice kheer".... prepares the dough for "luchi" and her "naru" is more round than mine. The senior / junior does not know when the lady does the shopping for a special prayer meet, they are happy with the "naru".... one is glued into the computer screen and the other is back from the neighbouring country just yesterday night... The doubts are now turning into  belief .... I meant I was wondering at what point does official meetings gets so interesting .... haha... How much of busy I am, or distracted the mind is, I enjoy sharing my recipes with all.... a Saraswati Pujo at the doorstep and let me give you a very quick, easy and yum recipe that you can offer the Goddess with luchi / Poori.... I am doing some normal "cooking - shooking".... and writing this super simple recipe because I wished to..... I love my blog however minuscule it is just as I love the "me" though it is full of flaws and a way bit weird too.... When I am hurt, I go out and buy myself a small gift, wear it.... take a selfie with a big smile.... I make it a point to repeat and repeat again "stay away from me if I have said no to you long back.... I have my own reasons and I prefer to stick to that".... I am too possessive, too protective of certain feelings or people, too averse to certain behaviours. Did you call me silly?.... Oh yes, I am.... very much.... I am 47.... I still call one Chandrayee Dasgupta and say you will not be friends with that person or hit a like in their post.... haha... but I am selfish enough not to comply to her wishes most of the time.... Leave me.... I am not the kind to be in your thought, let me walk alone and sing "yeh zindegi hai ek jua... kabhi jeet bhi kabhi har bhi yahan".... another hit number from Madam M.... At different stages of my life, Madam Ms have ruled on me, no more but! I know majority of you get irritated with my irrelevance ..... I just wished to say ignore people who let you down, rest.... to lessen your irritation I have arranged for some "mishtimukh" today.... FRESH ORANGE JUICE & SEMOLINA HALWA.

Oranges are found in abundance here in the island and of different variety throughout the year.... be it the naval oranges from that "bahargaon" or mandarin ones.... they are available fresh, juicy and sweet in most cases. I am fond of citrus fruits, we were so pampered kids that the mother removed the skin, seeds and served it in a plate... she should not have! She then dried the skin, powdered and prepared face masks for the daughter but the daughter made it a point that she will marry someone who accepts her the way she is.... she just uploaded a make up free selfie of her in few forums just to flaunt her newly bought nose pin, to say I am just this ! She tries to smile even when she is not in the right mood! I do not share every little feeling with the family or you.... most of the time I do not speak of what goes on inside hoping those who wish will know it... too much of expectations... huh? I know, I know! Anyway, I love the hint of tart even in a very sweet orange, use them in cooking occasionally besides having it as a fruit ..... what about a glass of orange juice every morning for your coughing men S? Come on do not get on my nerves... you are irritating me now... this is a family of three untamed horses... so orange juice goes to an ORANGE & SEMOLINA HALWA at times, even to chicken curries. Trust me and try, you will love this sweet & tart, to be had fresh & warm dessert done with fresh orange juice, semolina, sugar, green cardamom powder, ghee and dry fruits. If you cannot do an elaborate arrangement on Vasant Panchami, offer Maa Saraswati a plate of ORANGE & SEMOLINA HALWA with luchi / poori.... She will be happy & your family too! Tomorrow also happens to be Bengal's Valentine's Day .... young boys & girls wearing yellow coloured panjabi & saree are seen in flocks at the corner of a puja pandal or in front of a movie theatre.... they meet perhaps never to meet in future again! Let us concentrate on the recipe... bright yellow / basanti is the colour theme of our Saraswati Puja... My son or his father is not the type to wear a yellow punjabi on this day on my say.... your people are not this stubborn.... make them wear.... I can still feel the touch of my mother's fingers helping the daughter donning her saree .....







INGREDIENTS :
Semolina / Suji : 1medium cup
Orange Juice : 1/3 coffee mug [I used fresh]
Sugar : 1/4medium cup
Green Cardamom : 2-3
Bay Leaf : 1
Green Cardamom Powder : 1/4tsp
Chopped Pistachio, Cashew Nut, Almond, Raisin : 1tbsp + 1tbsp
Ghee : 1/2 to 1/3 small cup
Water : As Required
Yellow Food Colour : A pinch [optional]

METHOD :

Heat ghee in a wok and temper with green cardamoms and a bay leaf.




Add the semolina, fold in well.




Stir quite for sometime until the semolina is roasted well. Add the sugar now.




Fold in well the entire mixture and stir for 2 minutes or so. Add the orange juice now.




Fold in well and keep stirring for 1-2 minutes. We have the chopped dry fruits ready at the Kitchen counter.




Add a small cup of water, yellow food colour and half of the chopped dry fruits. Stir cook for 2-3 minutes till the entire content gets a paste like consistency.




We are done and we will transfer it to a serving bowl, garnish with the rest of the dry fruits mixture. If not offering it to the almighty, have fresh and hot either as a dessert or accompanied with luchi / poori!



Thursday, 18 January 2018

ATTA GUR MALPUA



Well Malpua does not require a season to be made at this home, it is done whenever this lady feels the duo had enough of fruits without much complaints, they deserve some "bhajabhuji." As is the system of the schools these days, there are two breaks... a short and a long one. I manage some fruits going down through the food track packing them for the junior's short break and for the senior's post lunch treat. Once a colleague of the senior told me.... you send two boxes full of food for your husband, most of the days he goes from this table to that table distributing a major part of them. He says the wife creates ruckus if I take them back home. It is not so that the tiger has suddenly stopped roaring but he hates to see the wife frowning after a hard day at work. Anyway, since then I pack his lunch box with few more parathas and pooris ..... sharing food is good.... we did it while at school, college and at the university level too. The husband continues to play tricks till date and remain severely underweight... 54 kg with a 5'11"height. How much our friends say he is lucky, the wife is worried and keeps on motivating him.... had you have listened to me, you could have a body like "Jholmol Khan" and would roam around with "Jhilmils" by your side you see. He seems to be too much involved with his present love who he spends maximum hours with, comes back home at 10 pm giving a deaf ear to the wife.... no one can stop me from frowning! Anyway, Lunch Box holds a special place in my heart... our mother set the standard for it ever since we were at school.... I try to follow her footsteps in my kitchen too.... hopefully successful because the son does not wish to eat from the school canteen in general .... Besides all these... that film Lunch Box is also treasured and is deeply rooted in this heart..... Few have crushed me under their feet a couple of times in this lifetime, I still cannot turn off the face... haha.... Life did not teach me to be calculative..... Calculus  was born to get me 54/100 in mathematics in our 10th board examination... we cannot be friends whatsoever.  Anyways, as I always say, I do not give any explanations to anyone on any of my actions as long as I do not find it necessary. On a lighter note, I make it a point to call the brother during his lunch hours... "ki khachish?".... The answer is an obvious "polao & doi macch".... "biryani" or "rajma / chana & luchi".... no wonder this boy will never wish to move out of Kolkata! The entire family's prime is Food and though Bengalis are more into preparing malpua with refined flour / rice flour / semolina.... an ATTA GUR MALPUA is also welcome at this home at times!

ATTA GUR MALPUA is perhaps the most basic of the variety of malpua Indians do. Among us Bengalis.... "kheer er malpoa" is more common done with refined flour, rice flour, semolina, thickened milk, sugar.... at times adding shredded coconut and a banana. The grandmother used to prepare malpua at this time of the year with rice flour and jaggery..... I simply loved that.... burnt at all corners and soft in the middle. I feel malpuas made with more amount of rice flour is crisper than the rest..... I keep on doing malpua in turns throughout the year, the most common sweet snack.... can we call it? Lying down on the couch with an Ashapurna Debi or a Shamsur Rahman or at times a Kafka or a Saadat Hasan Manto and having 4-5 malpua with tea is a pleasure for this old lady ever since she was a teen. I did read Samaresh Basu's "Bibar" while at school... then it was banned perhaps for a long time.... An item song played during Durga Puja may be nasty but not a Manto... I mean to me and perhaps to my kinds..... though my knowledge of him is negligible! Now if I start elaborating on my definition of "obscenity".... Google may not allow... Lets dive into the recipe of ATTA GUR MALPUA which I have done with whole wheat flour, jaggery, shredded coconut, banana..... deep fried in ghee and served garnished with pistachios. I have done malpua with whole wheat about three times, what I see is that they are very soft compared to the other varieties. I dare not add thickened milk in the batter, cannot manage.... yet they are good in taste. I am never happy with the shapes of these ATTA GUR MALPUA.... you can see that in the pictures... which proves I am not a cook with precision.... do not expect a "goina bori" from me either.... I am far from any kind of fine artistry ..... Enjoy my food shares, if not the photography...... I repeat again do not take me into your arms always.... I am by nature reclusive who loves seclusion most of the time, specially when she is hurt not knowing herself what is actually hurting her! You will definitely not like to be friend with such a confused person.... so keep a distance! Let me enjoy all of your posts, share with you my kitchen tales.... at times me, myself too.... I love flaunting my sarees, dresses, jewelry.... if you can accept me as that you will not be hurt.... most of the time I fail to see who wore what when and why.... this is not a composed brain you see! Come let us cook together ATTA GUR MALPUA and be happy!




INGREDIENTS :

Whole Wheat Flour : 1coffee mug
Grated Jaggery : 1medium Cup
Sugar : 2tbsp
Shredded Coconut : 1small cup
Banana : 1
Black Peppercorn : 1tbsp
Fennel Seed : 1tbsp
Ghee : 1small cup
Oil : 1/2small cup +1tsp
Baking Soda : A pinch
Pistachio : To Garnish

METHOD :

Take the whole wheat flour, grated jaggery, shredded coconut, sugar and banana in a bowl.




Mash the banana and mix together all the ingredients roughly. Add water little by little to prepare a thick batter. Add 1tsp oil, the black peppercorns and fennel seeds.




Mix everything very well and keep aside for an hour, covered. When it is ready to be fried, open cover and add the baking soda, mix well again.





Heat 1small cup ghee and 1/2 small cup oil in a pan or a wok [ accordingly you get the shapes flat or round]. Take a spoonful of the batter and gently pour on the hot oil. Adjust heat. Once the one side is brown, turn over and let fry the other side till brown. My first 2-3 malpuas are always a flop, so do not worry.... adjusting the heat is important.




Take out once fried and place on a tissue paper! Enjoy hot with tea or stale the next day!


Tuesday, 16 January 2018

MUTTON WITH EGGS & POTATOES



Ahh... tender, juicy, hot, spicy, irresistible... wooooow.... you are only mine.... I meant my rendezvous with mutton gets me to such expressions, I cannot help it. Boys can excuse me when mutton sings to me just like Akshay Kumar "Ab tere dil mein hum aa gaye, tere dil mein rahenge.... to? Tujhe apna kahenge.... Jhoota... says someone with that million dollar smile... who else but Madhuri Dixit.... she has a maddening effect on me since "ek, do, teen"days .... me and Chandrayee watched Tezaab first day, first show at Purnashree and how the naive Tanushree got vocal when it came to a fight with me over Madhuri and her heartthrob Sridevi.... Yesterday evening I came across this song after a long time and discovered my walking steps:pace ratio improved... Bollywood does rule my life... as does hilsa and mutton. Anyway, I cannot discuss on an on screen romance of Akshay Kumar & Madhuri Dixit much at this moment, why? No, not because Bollywood is unreal, because its unreal... I love it! Not unreal in all cases either, my couple friends, the active "SHER" members Joydip & Suchandra Kundu met in a Bollywood style... Joydip loves mutton and speaks for protection of animal rights too and I do not find anything wrong in it. There is one more Bollywood like couple among us, shall utter the names only if I am permitted to. Anyway, I should not go gaga about an onscreen couple at this time because a real life couple needs our attention and support .... if the queen of wit with substance Twinkle Khanna can get her "main khilari tu anari" husband to do a socially relevant movie like "Padman".... due for release on 25th January, she deserves a big hand from us!.... I loved the tagline... The gentleman Mr. Arunachalam Muruganantham dared to speak on women's hygiene which even women do not and invented a machine to produce low cost sanitary napkins for the needy.... We will watch the movie, you too should. My man definitely will not say no to it..... though I know if I call him now in office and sing 'Aab tere dil mein hum aa gaye, tere dil mein rahenge'.... his immediate reaction would be S .... have you started doing drugs? I will still be serving luchi and MUTTON WITH EGGS & POTATOES to him tonight. I am not this "lokkhi meye".... either.... I do not wish to be a good girl at all times, in all cases.... To go with a mutton dish today is a sudden decision , I was thinking of going ahead with something else that millions of those girls who cannot afford a sanitary napkin may cook and have.... but then do not you try to find logic in my actions .... neither do I explain my actions to anyone.... because only I know my own pain, angst, whatever.... majority of you do not.... The few who know it do join hands on special days to make fun of me in full public view.... Go, and kiss them on their cheeks, I do not care. Let me go ahead with a mutton dish for people who care for me...

Yesterday, I was enjoying some of my dear people's posts, uploads.... they are close to the heart, they have done something or the other for me at different times.... yet I do not always kiss them in public just to say.... I suffer from breathlessness if you hug me too tight in public .... I still love you, and I still dislike people who I have once disliked.... one cannot be a friend who intend to irritate you purposefully even after a couple of decades.... Let us come to the people who love mutton. If the little brother has stopped kissing Arnab, at least in public, he deserves a mutton today.... who are they smiling being in their wives's arms?.... a Sanak Chottopadhay & a Dibyendu Banerjee.... they swear by mutton and I love them way too much... Have I ever introduced you guys to one Debopam Raha? Well when I joined school he was the first boy in our class while this girl sat towards the last bench..... however so we became good friends... he went to another school a year later and you see we are still so good friends and his wife Sarnali seems too much of my dear! This superb guy is an IIT Kharagpur alumni who posted few pictures of their alumnus meet yesterday... in one of them the wonder woman Chutu's husband is standing beside him but I will not talk about one of India's genius today.... this dumbo's good friend "Debo" is no less either.... when a Debopam Raha.... Dr. Saubhik Sengupta and their loving spouses gets together at our Kolkata home, S has to cook a mutton curry! It is not so that the people who sat with me in the last benches are not my love.... each one of them has done good in their life expect for me who only managed to find a perfect host body.... haha.... These people's silly acts at times gets me angry... Who are those "rascalas" from college who went for a picnic to the Eco Park without me? Swati Bhattacharya and gang.... this girl is hyper sensitive just as me but she or some of them know I am too allergic to some people.... but I can treat them all with some MUTTON WITH EGGS & POTATOES always! Those girls with a red gown, or a black pullover or a black sunglass are a pleasure to watch at all times... I keep them in the warmth of my heart.... Since age fifteen I learnt to enjoy watching beautiful girls.... in the process I forgot to fall for boys you know... haha... Do not drag the man of the house into all these... the poor guy was destined to stand by a bush or in the mid sea with a water bottle beside his wife who has severe nausea.... there he is.... a banyan tree for the family that did not grow in width.... Coming to sunglasses, even when I was wearing contact lenses, I could not manage a sunglass... given the flat nose... it always slipped! The irritated me would scream.... yaar husband... can you please fund for your wife's plastic surgery.... you can see the moron did not! Yet he will get his favourite mutton today... I do not know whether I am a good wife or a mother.... the parameters to measure  it is not clear to me... Day before yesterday Shamsa Anwar, a dear friend who teaches at Penn State University wrote a note on what a mother should teach her son on women and I instantly could identify with it. I am  abnormally attached to my son but never say "hirer angti abar baka kisher".... I always tell him be honest with your commitments and always respect a girl's consent.... rest only our Olive Oyl can say how much he has learnt from it. By the way... my beautiful friend Shamsa is a wonderful photographer... her bald husband with moustaches, bhai jaan looks such a gentleman....  She happens to be my first virtual friend with three other ladies.... not all names are to be taken in a lifetime... For all, a curry MUTTON WITH EGGS & POTATOES.... For the rest and their dearest ones there are better people to take care  as of now.... I do not wish any kiss coming to this direction today.... at times I love total seclusion for myself...

You definitely have got bored by now.... You are always at the liberty to dive directly into the recipe of this MUTTON WITH EGGS & POTATOES, the idea of which I got from our couple friends Sanjib & Paramita Ghosal. Their December visit to Kolkata has to have a mandatory visit to Aminia which has opened a branch in our locality there too. Sanjib shared a picture of such a dish with mutton, eggs and potatoes last week.... they were having it without me at Aminia.... The angry me did not call Paramita for any idea on the recipe and went ahead with something that is purely mine. It has yogurt, a number of mixed spices, etc. etc. in it... please do check the ingredient list.. As for the kids who featured yesterday in the social forums... I love you but a homemade jam for you some other day... when people leave me at myself... and do not prick me hard repeatedly for decades! "Ab to dil mein hai darde disco".... I am that woman who fought all "dards" and made a good choice and life for herself.... may be parasitical I am... how does it bother you?




INGREDIENTS :
Mutton / Lamb : 1kg [medium cut]
Yogurt : 200gm
Potato : 2big [peel, wash and cut into 4pieces each, ideally each should be cut into 2 pieces]
Egg : [1 for each person, wash, boil and remove the shell]
Onion Paste : 2tbsp
Ginger Paste : 1tsp
Garlic Paste : 2tbsp
Tomato Paste : 1/2small cup
Fennel Powder : 1/4tsp
Cumin Powder : 1/2tsp
Coriander Powder : 1tsp
Red Chilli Powder : 1/12tbsp [adjust as per your requirement]
Turmeric Powder : 1tsp
Nutmeg Powder : 1/2tsp
Black Pepper Powder : 1/2tsp [coarsely ground]
Cinnamon Powder : 1/2tsp
Cardamom Powder : 1/4tsp
Salt : As Required
Ghee : 3tbsp + 1tbsp
Bay leaf : 1big
Oil : 2tbsp

METHOD :

Wash the mutton pieces thoroughly. Add half of all the powdered spices and some salt to the yogurt and beat well. Add to mutton pieces and coat each piece well. Keep refrigerated for at least 5 hours or overnight in a closed container. Take out 1 hour before cooking.

Rub little salt to the boiled eggs when you start the cooking. The potatoes should be soaked in water till the mutton is half done, else they turn black once peeled.... it happens to me at least.

Heat 3tbsp ghee and 2tbsp oil in a wok and temper with a bay leaf! Add the onion, ginger and garlic pastes and stir for two minutes, add the tomato paste now and stir for another minute. Add the rest of the red chilli and turmeric powder only at this stage and stir well till oil separated from the spice mix.

Add the mutton pieces without the marinade and stir at high heat for 2-3 minutes. Reduce heat to minimum and add the marinade, fold in well and cover cook at minimal heat... check and stir in between. A lot of water will release and when it dries, the "koshano" part is done.

We will add the salt rubbed potato pieces now. Add the remaining spice mixes now except for the turmeric and red chilli powder which we have added earlier. Fold in well and stir for 2 minutes.

Add 11/2 coffee mug of warm water and fold in well. Cover cook at minimal heat for ten minutes, open cover and add the boiled eggs. Cover cook for 3-4 minutes. We should be done.

Transfer to a serving bowl, garnish with 1tbsp ghee and enjoy with steamed rice, pulao, any kind of breads!





Sunday, 14 January 2018

NARKOL DIYE CHITOI PITHE O KHEJUR GUR



No, I will not start with the much cliched "poush toder dak diyechey, aaire chute aai aai aai"...... Gurudeb may get angry.... there is more and still more to him than the very few verses of him that circulates in the social media.... I have not read him enough so that I can make an impromptu quote from his treasure trove. Instead, let me thank the recipe source for this easier method of doing Chitoi Pithe..... I did not even dare to follow our mother's recipe..... she follows her mother's recipe which requires two particular variety of rice and salt..... they would wash and soak the rice overnight, drain the water next day, half grind in a "hamandista" and then prepare a semi smooth paste in the "shil nora" .... then would go ahead with the recipe. I will take a bow with reverence, saluting all these yesteryear ladies.... the super women but will follow an easier recipe that I discovered in a Facebook Page named Daisy's Recipe & Cuisine Gallery! I am so very thankful to this page for helping me to try and be successful with a traditional Bengali recipe with an easier method using modern equipments! I followed that particular recipe almost blindly, added some shredded coconut that the island provides us in abundance and got this near perfect, soft NARKOL DIYE CHITOI PITHE O KHEJUR GUR. It is a celebration time for the Indians spread all over the world! If it is a Makar Sankranti, I have to go ahead with something traditional that suits, if it is an Eid celebration, I will go ahead with a chicken recipe, its as simple as that! I was telling a very dear and trusted someone just yesterday that life seems complicated these days but I prefer a straight road! Do not ask me if the person is a man or a woman.... haha..... I never do think before an action and that lands me in to unwanted complications! Let me tell you about an incident that occured few weeks back. I was inside an Asian store, happy and content with the size of "ilish" or with a packet of "loitta shutki"..... chit chatting with the store guys.... all of a sudden I discovered they used the beef cutter machine for cutting my fish or mutton, chicken! I screamed "eta ki korlen apnara, aar nimuna mach apnader thika."...... Then I saw the pain on the known faces who call me "Apa"..... On my way back home, a feeling of gloom and guilt overshadowed me.... I was thinking what if they hold me at gun point tomorrow for hurting their religious sentiments? It was only last week that my son while ordering a beef steak was instructing the restaurant manager for a rare one ... with 20% cooking... I felt awkward then too! Why? Some where there a party wins 80 seats in a State Assembly election only by visiting temples prior to the election ignoring the other places of worship.... there are also other such places where you can stay in power for long if you speak ill of or destroy temples! Meanwhile, in both the countries a girl child is abducted, raped, strangulated and killed! .... and we are busy spitting at each other! It is good to protect animal rights, not alone of cows though.... but one should ensure that the kids and adults do not die in a hospital in absence of oxygen! I will not go ahead with a chicken keema ball share on a Makar Sankranti Day just because I try not to hurt sentiments. However poor I am at bakes, I did share a cake recipe for Xmas.... All of us have every right to uphold and take pride in our own culture and tradition, but without hurting the sentiments of the rest! We are unable to be this perfect always and that is so humane....

Chitoi Pithe is an authentic Bengali, savoury snack recipe which is done during Poush Sankranti and to be had with Khejur Gur / Date Palm Jaggery..... Unable to follow the yesteryear ladys' laborious method, unavailability of the required ingredients and utensils, I preferred to follow an easier method I discovered in a Facebook page. I follow such pages to go back in time, relive childhood through the food shares that  I grew up eating! This recipe  requires use of cooked rice which our mothers will never approve of! Cooked rice is "shorka" or "etho" to them.... she always complains "tora etho - katha manishna ekdom" .... The poor lady is at our Kolkata home now, cleaning before Sankranti because the daughter could not make her winter visit. It is only for her that it has not turned into a remains till date. Yet I do not do the 1/4th for her what my little brother does. Anyway, we do not offer savoury snacks to the God usually, so I went ahead with using cooked rice. I like it and giggle when the rest of India or say people of this island offer God what they eat!.... This recipe of NARKOL DIYE CHITOI PITHE O KHEJUR GUR uses a special variety of rice, cooked rice, a little of oil, sugar, salt, baking powder..... the shredded coconut is my addition! I really got an authentic taste of Chitoi Pithe. Inspite of being a diabetic, I am indeed enjoying it with date palm jaggery or a cup of tea.... You can turn these snacks into a dessert adding them to thickened milk. Will come up with that recipe later.... Till yesterday, I prepared only 3 desserts and pithe altogether because my men are small eaters. By the way, the picture of my Patali Gurer Payesh [ Date Palm Jaggery Kheer] just got updated... do you like it?



I still do not know how to share links of my previous posts as some of my friends do.... I am the only food blogger perhaps with no technical knowledge, neither I am a cook with precision.... I always urge people... leave me alone... be it in the kitchen or in life.... I perform better that way and do not wish to bother others either. Traditionally, this recipe requires a "matir shora" and "matir unan" but you can see Daisy's Recipe & Cuisine Gallery have provided us with a recipe that is full proof and can be done in gas oven and in a cast iron wok or in a round shaped, non-stick wok. I would suggest you to use even smaller wok. In the beginning I made the blunder of spreading the batter with the back of the ladle a bit.... never do that.... else they will not rise, neither will remain soft and fluffy at the center.  I corrected after getting it wrong initially....




Heavily Inspired by :
Daisy's Notebook & Cuisine Gallery



INGREDIENTS :
Gobinda Bhog / Chini Gura / Kali Jeera Rice : 11/3coffee mug [we get this variety in Asian store]
Cooked rice : 1small cup
Shredded Coconut : 1medium cup
Oil : 2tbsp
Sugar : 1tbsp
Salt : 1/3tsp
Baking Powder : 1/3tsp
Water : As Required for a paste like consistency

METHOD :

Wash and soak the rice overnight.




Next Morning, drain the water and transfer the rice to a grinder, add all the other ingredients except the shredded coconut.



Add some water and grind to a fine paste. Do the grinding part with intervals and do not add water all at a time!



Pour the batter into a large bowl.... Add little water if only required! Mix well.



Add the shredded coconut.




Mix well again the entire content.



Heat a cast iron or non stick round, small wok on gas oven very well. Take a round shaped spoonful of batter and pour gently at the centre of the wok.



Do not do anything.... just cover and reduce heat to minimum immediately.



It took me 1 minute for each to fluff up though the original recipe said 30 seconds.



Gently take out, the bottom will be little burnt..... while the centre will be fluffy! Authentically we enjoy NARKOL DIYE CHITOI PITHE O KHEJUR GUR / date palm jaggery.... You can also enjoy it with your favourite chutney and hot cups of tea.... even stale the next day!


Wednesday, 10 January 2018

FISH ALOO BITES




I have not taken any stepwise pictures for this appetiser called FISH ALOO BITES, I cannot remember when I took these shots! Such dishes keep on happening at our home.... sweet home ..... only that I do not take pictures always..... At times I prepare appetisers from some remains.... when the refrigerator requires a spring cleaning. These FISH ALOO BITES are made of such ingredients like a little of fish fillets, carrots, green pea, onion, very few spices and our universal potato..... Somedays I do not at all put much effort in the kitchen, may prepare some easy-peasy starters and enjoy with some handmade breads or a pulao by the sides.The last two days I was busy assembling and sharing the family album of our recent tour, observe the reactions of some as much as possible with the limited edition of grey matter.... I meant how far people can go with their insensitivity.... then took no effort to remove few from the so called friend's list. Who are those people?.... Well people who think I have made the biggest mistake of not giving birth to a girl child, they find it difficult to wish my pride on his  birthday, but adorns their daughter in most cases in dresses matching to this island's flag and post just when I have posted few pictures of my men which I do yearly once or twice may be..... I am so busy promoting "myself" rest of the time haha..... Anyways, I felt a strong urge to eliminate such elements from my list.... it is at some of these characters' times of emergency did I fund a bit without a second thought.... it hurts.... when it hurts, I prefer to remove. So, I was in a cleaning spree though not thoroughly.... there are still some who I am strongly unwilling to remain connected in social forums, unable to be stern in some particular cases.... but we can always avoid. Haven't I grew up watching two women protecting their kids like a tigress? I keep on telling my mother that the only difference between you and the "another woman" is that.... her kids listened to every word of her and your daughter did not and obviously lacked their brain ... haha.... My mother at least was / is a saree aficionado, wore lipstick, nail polish..... I have never seen that "another woman" wearing anything beyond a cotton, never wore a lipstick or a nail polish..... each penny, every dream of her revolved around the betterment of her kids.... to feel that you need not wake up together every morning... you just know. I watched everything from a distance, how does it matter if I am not in the list of her most loved people? In the home front, isn't it for my little brother that I can live peacefully in a far off place? .... off course his wife is a contributor!With the senior's sister too taking utmost care of her parents, life should be good.... If you ask me do you apply on your son what you have learnt from the two ladies..... then you are truly a stranger to us.... the junior went after his father ..... he decides for himself.... this character trait off course is my maa-in-law's contribution! Why did I write all those rubbish above?.... Well you should always consider having more than one kid in your life, it helps .... some dear / dearest people around do not have any.... I will definitely not go ahead with a 'you... me... and my kid' kind of post today.... its for all! Most of us love kids, we must without any prejudice or discrimination.... but deep within your heart.... you must take utmost pride in yours.... always.... We will not hurt other's sentiment so long they are not hurting mine! I am my mother's and that "another woman's" prototype ..... so I cannot think beyond this!.... I never claim to be a wise person!..... but more or less an honest cook and can treat you with such an awesome starter / appetiser / snack called FISH ALOO BITES!

Fish is a staple in any Bengali home.... you bet after returning home from any tour.... I so much crave for our kind of fish curry.... this is not the case for my men who may be planning for a deer meat or snake meat on their next trip. I am my mother's daughter and still remember after returning from a vacation, how she ran to the wet market... got some "shorputi or aar" and prepare an authentic curry with"dhonepata bata, sheem, mulo, begun".... Indeed I watched that Bengali movie with a 'fishy tale' and was giggling looking at the "bori-begun diye rui / katlar jhol".... I found so similar few of the dialogues... our mother still says "amra kena bori khaina".... or when my senior says "katla r kachey rui kichui na"..... The problem is I do not get that authentic taste in the curries made with fresh water fish coming from the neighbouring countries, its better to have a snapper, salmon or the universal shrimp... If the Senior and the Junior is happy, the lady has to be happy.... Even the people of Bengal with an authentic taste bud says the fish markets of Kolkata are flooded with fish from the "bheri" or from other states, we hardly get "khal bil nodi pukurer mach" these days. I do prepare them keeping a meat dish, vegetarian dish like kofta for the son, click pictures too.... shall go ahead in a good time..... If one Anindya Chaterjee goes ahead with my dearest contemporary Bengali author Shirshendu Mukhopadhyay's "Monojder Adbhoot Bari" for his next venture, we have to go ahead with a "kheer kodom or chal potol" too.... as of now I have to think about the lovely people who came and showed some love to my family album.... with or without much calculation.... I mean they understood that it is not possible to wear winter clothes in a tropical beach or request an unknown teen to be in the frame just for the sake of a match-match game.... is it ever possible to remember who wore what when.... that too with my men who will not listen at all which clothes to wear and when..... I am an idiot and dumbo but what goes around in the social forums is sheer madness ..... It feels very depressive to realise that I have become a part of it.... too unwillingly.... Some may not have a spouse, while others may not have a kid... do I / we stop featuring in the social media for that or should they stop? ...... I do not like people taking too much interest in my family matters that refers to my brother, cousins, sister-in-laws, brother-in-laws.... Tomorrow if I kiss their sister-in-law or brother-in-law leaving them, they are going to kick me out! If it is food.... it should be the recipe that should concern us.... if it is someone's picture, how graceful they look in the attire should matter.... I do not understand how a family with a girl child can have a boy in their frame and vice versa...... I mean if they are self centric like me and prefer family tour / time. The world should  not be brainless like me.... if the man at home says I hate those social forums, I cannot blame him.... one of his dearest someone in Mumbai also says... S, I indeed have a Facebook profile with no picture or post... haha.... The best way to keep all these complications at bay is to do what you love.... in my case it is to share this recipe of non vegetarian fish appetiser / snack FISH ALOO BITES with you all. It requires very few ingredients that are always in your pantry and is quick to do. It is crisp, yum... such a pleasure at every bite that you will love it even if you are not a fish lover.




INGREDIENTS :
Any Firm White Fish Fillet : 300-350gm [boiled with little salt and roughly mashed]
Carrot : 1medium sized [cut in to small cubes]
Green Pea : 1/2small cup
Potato : 2medium [peeled, washed, boiled and mashed]
Onion : 1big[peeled, washed, roughly chopped]
Cumin Seed : 1/4tsp
Black Pepper Corn : 10-12
Fennel Seed : 11/2tsp
Dry Red Chilli : 2-3
Coriander Leaves : 2tbsp[chopped]
Turmeric powder : 1/4tsp
Lemon juice : 2-3tbsp
Refined Flour : 1tbsp
Salt : As Required
Oil : 2tbsp + 2tbsp

METHOD :

Dry roast the fennel seeds, black pepper corns and the dry red chillies, grind to a coarse powder.

Wash the carrot cubes, green peas and rub with little salt. Heat oil in a wok and temper with cumin seeds.

Add the chopped onion and fry till light brown. Add the carrot cubes, green peas and stir fry at medium heat for 2 minutes.

Add the boiled and mashed fish, turmeric powder and stir cook for a minute or so. Add the boiled potato and fold in very well. Keep stirring continuously for 3-4 minutes.

Add the coarsely ground powder, lemon juice, chopped coriander leaves and fold in very well. Stir for 2 minutes and add the refined four. Add salt if required. Fold in well and take down. Let cool.

Once cool, make into desired shapes. Heat 2tbsp oil in a pan, arrange the fish tikkis atop. Let cook till one side is brown. Turn over and let cook till brown.




Sunday, 7 January 2018

MAWA MATAR STUFFED PATISHAPTA




We are just back from a week long tour of Port Dickson & A'famosa Amusement Park located in Malaysia.... a four to five hours drive from our island. They are not major tourist attractions as of Langkawi or Redang Island or say Penang, yet we chose them for a couple of reasons. Going for any kind of tour was not in our agenda this year as the son is appearing for his boards. We did not go to meet our family back in India for the same reason. However, I felt the son needs a break from the monotony of daily routine.... He is not the type who will sit at home and study all day through ..... better we go for an outing! We wished to save on the airfares and have a luxurious stay, and we did! I do not wish to go into further details on our stay.... it can be as boring as is the account of how lavish is the interior of the Ambani House... Antilia or the Virat Kohli-Anushka Sharma Wedding is to me! The husband travels to Port Dickson for ship visits and said you will like the place wifey.... it is quiet, free from any kind of crowd. On her tours, this lady loves to explore the daily life of the local people ..... how they live.... what they eat or wear! People come n stay there to play golf and eat street fries too. I indeed caught few moments and did not miss a cheese cake either ... haha...








That is when a message comes from that wonder woman Chutu's husband on my phone.... S..... is your husband playing golf?.... He is among  very few who does not leave a single chance to play pranks on my man.... Chutu is perhaps the only woman on earth to whom my stubborn husband listens to a bit.... The woman or the couple gave shelter to one T for three long months at their Mumbai home when T was frantically looking for a decent job after a 21/2 years stay at home because of our monkey's birth, running out of all our savings. I can never repay their debts, more details on them some other day.... today is definitely not the right day to discuss them.... though the post suited! Anyway, I do not understand anything about photography, I just aim and shoot.... that too with my cell phone. The senior did not carry his camera either.... he takes them on long tours.... In fact he said S absorb dear... why do you ask us to pose... its irritating.... I say, I am making memories... I will relish them when the son will be away or my skin gets wrinkled! Moreover, our family and friends want to see us together at least once or twice in a year.... Port Dickson is a small township by the sea.... some 11/2 hour drive from its capital Kuala lumpur and a 4-5 hours drive from our island. It has few small beaches, good food.... local and fusion.... its market areas reminds me of the "haat" we read about in our Bengali text books or story books.... farmer's market? The palm & coconut gardens, small patch of farmlands remind me of such places I went for picnic years back.... the journey seemed as if I am travelling through the Kalyani Expressway towards the interior! A'famosa Amusement Park is an estate with water themed park, animal safari, hotel, condotel, villa, farmlands.... both personal properties and for the visitors. I enjoyed the view while those theme parks were for the men. Thank God, taking pictures in the theme parks were prohibited, else it would have been a comic relief for you to see me in the wave pool.... I am not adventurous with life! When the son ventures out with his girlfriend or wife, the old couple will stay in one of those log houses in the deep forest.... by the way.... is there any insect free forest with wifi connection in this world?

This MAWA MATAR STUFFED PATISHAPTA has an unusual filling. Patishapta / desi crepe falls in the 'pithepuli' category .... the sweet meat? section among us! It is during this winter do the Bengalis had or may be still have 'pithepuli'.... I will do a few among many in the coming days as I do every year. I do them round the year, this is a tropical island.... no point waiting for the winter to prepare them. The idea of doing them in winter is that a lot of milk products and coconut is used in them.... summers are not ideal.... anyway Indians and bloating are synonymous if you are not an ardent follower of Milind Soman or Rujuta Diwekar! Rujuta is here today to speak at the Marina Bay Sands Convention Centre.... I missed an earlier one, this time I do not want to miss it.... We are tired.... let us see if I can.... I just wish to listen to her... very scientific take on life and health! Patishapta / desi crepe is usually made with a coconut and thickened milk filling.... I drifted away from the traditional recipe and prepared this MAWA MATAR STUFFED PATISHAPTA with an unusual filling made of instant reduced milk, thickened milk, green pea paste, ghee! The family enjoyed it and are forced to welcome my experiments with food.... I tell them... I love my blog, however unwilling you are.... there can be no other guinea pig better than you... haha... The little brother loves his sister, yet will not agree to be a guinea.... could he ever get out of the Biryani phobia and explore the vast arena of food?.... though I do not agree with my men's comfort level with anything from octopus to camel.... that is the painful part of travelling with them!




INGREDIENTS: [for the filling]
Green Pea : 1coffee mug
Thickened Milk : 1small cup
Instant Mawa : 1medium cup
Powdered Milk : 2tbsp
Green Cardamom Powder : 1tsp
Sugar : 3tbsp
Ghee : 4tbsp

INGREDIENTS : [for the desi crepes]
Refined Flour : 1coffee mug
Rice Flour : 1/2coffee mug
Semolina : 1/2coffee mug
Sugar : 2tbsp
Baking Soda : A pinch
The Mawa Matar filling
Oil : Few drops
A non stick pan

METHOD :

I did not specify the ingredients for the thickened milk and instant mawa.... I mentioned it several times and there are too many youtube videos on them.

For the thickened milk, we will take about 400ml of full cream milk in a vessel and boil till it reaches half the consistency.... let cool for later use.

For the instant mawa, take 1/2 medium cup powdered milk, 1/4 small cup ghee, 1tea spoon of sugar and 3 table spoon of milk. Mix together all and microwave at high for 2-3 minutes stirring every 1 minute.




Wash the green peas and prepare a paste of it! Heat ghee in a wok and add the green pea paste to it.



Stir for 2-3 minutes and add the powdered milk. Fold in well.



Add the sugar and fold in well.



Add the thickened milk, fold in well.


Stir till the mixture tends to come out from the sides. Add the green cardamom powder and fold in well. Stir for a minute or so, take down.



Once the green pea paste is cool, add the instant mawa to it and roughly mix. Our filling is ready.



As for the patishapta crepes, we actually will prepare the batter at least 2 hours prior to its making, the soaking period is very important.

Take all the flours and sugar in a bowl.



Add water little by little and prepare a batter that is not too thick, neither too watery. Add 2-3 drops of oil.



Keep aside for 2-3 hours and add a pinch of baking soda and mix well only before frying them. Usually thickened milk is used to prepare the batter, but I wished to keep it less rich and added water.



Heat a non stick pan and grease with few drops of oil, wipe off any excess! Add a big spoonful of batter and immediately spread in roundels with the back of your ladle.



Let it be for few seconds, place a portion of filling in the middle and flatten a bit.


Fold from both sides. I am not so good at the folding part, yet they are patishaptas for sure.



Enjoy fresh, or may be the next day... both ways it is yum.