Tuesday, 19 May 2015
ALOO PEPER DALNA / POTATO N RAW PAPAYA CURRY
Simple, humble, Bengali vegetarian dish is my pick today. It is a curry made of raw papaya and potato. As a child I hated vegetables, but now I love them as much as a scrumptious fish curry. Perhaps I understood the importance of including vegetables in our daily diet. This vegetable curry is an age old traditional Bengali one.....we generally call ALOO - PEPER DALNA. Any weekday lunch /dinner is just perfect with such a veggie curry, dal, a fish curry and any kind of fritter with piping hot rice. That is what a Bengali meal is all about.
Raw/ Green Papaya has many nutritional benefits. It is a powerful fruit full of essential nutrients and enzymes to promote digestive health. We also use it as a natural meat tenderiser. I remember, in our childhood at my grandparent's place we had a couple of papaya trees. Whenever grand mom wished to prepare a curry with papaya, she would pluck one and do. It was as simple as that. No doubt it tasted amazing. Later, we had papaya tree at my parent's place too. They are easy to grow without any special care taken. Can be enjoyed ripened or raw in curries....gravy or dry.
Raw Papaya : 1 medium
Potato : 1 big
Tomato : 1
Shredded Coconut : 1/2 cup
Ginger Paste : 2 tbsp
Red Chilli Powder : 1 tsp
Cumin Powder : 1 tsp
Turmeric Powder : 1 tsp
Salt : As required
Sugar : 1/2 tsp
Cumin Seed : 3 pinches
Bayleaf : 1
Bengali Garam Masala Powder : 2 pinches[1cinnamon stick of one inch, 2 green cardamom, 2 cloves....ground together]
Oil : 4 tbsp
Ghee : 1tsp
Peel and cut the papayas into cubes discarding and scraping the middle portion nicely. Peel n cut the potato into cubes. Wash and cut the tomato into small pieces.
Wash both separately. Rub with half turmeric and required amount of salt.
Heat oil in a wok. Lightly fry the potato and papaya pieces separately. Keep aside.
Temper oil with a bayleaf and cumin seeds.
Add the ginger paste. Fry till the raw smell goes. Add the shredded coconut and fry for 1 minutes.
Add the tomato pieces and fry till the paste separates from the oil.
Add the cumin powder, turmeric powder, chilli powder and salt. Stir for 1 minute at low heat.
Now add the fried papaya pieces. Fold in well and stir for 2 minutes.
Add the fried potatoes and stir for another 2 minutes.
Add 1 medium cup water. Stir and cover.
After 5-7 minutes, open cover and add Bengali garam masala, sugar and ghee. Stir and boil for another 1 minute.
Serve hot with steamed rice or flat breads!!