Tuesday, 14 April 2015


Poila Baishakh/ Bangla Noboborsho is the first day of the Bengali calendar, celebrated on 14th April in Bangladesh and on 15th April in the Indian state of West Bengal by the Bengali community. Besides whichever part of the world we are, we celebrate this day. The Bengali calendar is tied to the Indian solar calendar, based on the Surya Siddhanta. It commences in mid- April of the gregorian year. Traditionally, businesses start this day with a new ledger, clearing out the old.

This day is marked with singing, processions and fairs. The new year is welcome with songs and dance performances. People visit their relatives, friends and neighbours. We prepare special dishes for family and guests. Mostly we wear classical Bengali dresses on this day... women.... sarees and men.... panjabis. Poila Baishakh is about celebrating the roots of Bengal in a simpler manner.

I prepared this SWEET POTATO DUMPLINGS IN SUGAR SYRUP on the occasion of Bengali New Year. The main ingredients used here is sweet potato, home made paneer, sugar. In general, khoya is used instead of paneer. This is a home made sweet mainly... not sold commercially.

INGREDIENTS : [for the dumplings]
Sweet Potato : 4
Milk : 1 litre
Lemon : 1 medium
Sugar : 1 tsp
Green Cardamom : 2
Oil : 1/2 cup to fry

INGREDIENTS : [ for the syrup ]
Sugar : I cup
Water : 1 cup
Green Cardamom : 2
Rose Water : 2 drops

Peel, wash and cut half the sweet potatoes. Take water in a pressure cooker, put the sweet potatoes and pressure cook up to 1 whistle at low heat.

Once cold, put in a bowl, discard the water.

Heat the milk in a heavy bottomed vessel. Get the juice from the lemon.

As the milk boil, pour in the juice. The milk curdles.

Strain the mixture through a white clean cloth. Can store the whey for later use. Squeeze extra water from the chena. Wash it under cold water and hang it for 30 minutes.

Add the chena to the sweet potato. Add the green cardamom seeds and the sugar.

Mash for about 15-20 minutes till all ingredients are mixed well.

Shape into balls. Heat oil in a wok. Fry the balls till brown.

In another oven take one cup water n sugar together. Keep boiling.

Tear the green cardamoms a little and add to the syrup.

As the syrup turns little sticky, add the rose water.

Now add the fried balls and switch off gas.

Let them soak for 1 hour. Refrigerate.

Serve chilled.


  1. Yumm!! That's like sweet potato gulab jamun! Just received a fresh batch of sweet potatoes. This would be worth a try :)

  2. Interesting recipe, definitely a new one for me Soma, a different type of gulab jamun!

  3. Kimberly....thanks dear....i think u will love them...a lighter version of gulab jamun...

  4. Thank you very much azlin....yes its near to gulab jamun in taste...little light....

  5. loving this for sure! very new to me, will try . thanks for sharing Soma :)

  6. delicious!! i have tasted this at my bengali friend's house and i loved it the moment i ate the first bite... very well explained recipe dear:)