Paneer er Chop (Cottage Cheese Croquettes/ Cutlets)

Croquettes are referred to as fried snacks coated with breadcrumbs. The stuffing can be made of either vegetables, cheese, fish or meat. These kind of snacks are pretty popular among Bengalis and we usually call them ‘chop’ or ‘cutlets’. You will find a few cutlet recipes in my earlier posts, which are given here.

In the current recipe, I have chosen paneer or the Indian Cottage Cheese  as the stuffing since it is extremely popular among vegetarians. I love the soft, crumbly texture of paneer in my mouth with each bite. Icing on the top is the flavour of coriander leaves in the stuffing, symbolizing the onset of winter. Without using variety of spices, the garam masala solely creates the magic.

While one has to be careful while frying the croquettes which is the only tricky part, however, with a few handful ingredients a tasty snack will be ready within minutes.

Paneer er Chop (Cottage Chheese Croquettes/ Cutlets)

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Fish Cutlets (Bengali Macher Chop)

Macher chop‘ or fish cutlet is among the most popular street foods in Kolkata. Spicy mashed fish content makes the cutlet savoury inside with a crunchy outside twist. This is the newest addition to my list of chop & cutlet recipes which I shared earlier. This is a perfect evening snack, a party winner and a delight to your guests. Any fish with less bone can be chosen for this recipe, for example Rohu, Bhetki, Lote (Bombay duck fish) etc. So with no more delay save a little fish from your daily menu and try this mouthwatering snack.

Fish Cutlets (Bengali Macher Chop)

Fish Cutlets (Bengali Macher Chop)

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Fish Cordon Bleu

Cordon bleu is a cutlet in which a thin slice of pounded meat is wrapped around cheese, then breaded and pan fried or deep fried. Various meat can be used for this purpose, such as chicken, veal, ham etc.

But as the name reveals I replaced meat with fish fillet and made a fish cordon bleu. I used Atlantic Cod fillets which can be replaced well by our favourite ‘Bhetki’ fish. The combination of fish with molten cheese made it so exquisitely delicious that is hard to explain in words. So better to prepare and try yourself. 😉

Fish Cordon Blue

Fish Cordon Blue

Ingredients to serve 2-4 :

  1. Fish fillet – 1 (approx. 150 gm)
  2. Onion paste – 1½ tbspoon
  3. Ginger – garlic paste – ½ tbspoon
  4. Green chilli paste – 1 teaspoon (optional)
  5. Lime juice – 1 tbspoon
  6. Black pepper powder – ½ teaspoon
  7. Salt to taste
  8. Mustard sauce or “Kasundi” – 1 tbspoon
  9. Grated cheese – 3-4 tbspoon
  10. Chopped Parsley – 2 tbspoon (heaped)
  11. Egg (beaten) – 1
  12. Breadcrumbs to coat
  13. Flour – 2-3 tbspoon
  14. Oil for pan fry

Procedure :

Clean and take out 4 medium size thin fillets of square or rectangular shape out of the large fillet. Try to cut them in equal size as they are going to be sandwiched with one another.

Fish fillets

Fish fillets

Marinate the fillets with the ingredients from 2-7 for at least 2 hours.

To make the filling, mix together the grated cheese and chopped parsley in a bowl.

Now coat one side of a fillet with ½ tbspoon of mustard sauce, spread half of the cheese filling over it, then sandwich it with another fillet. Prepare the other one following the same way.

Coating the fillet with mustard sauce & cheese feeling

Coating the fillet with mustard sauce & cheese feeling

Sandwiching the fillets

Sandwiching the fillets

Now spread the flour and breadcrumbs in two separate plates.

First coat the sandwiched fillet with flour, then dip in the beaten egg and finally coat with breadcrumbs.

Now heat oil in a pan over medium heat and shallow fry both sides of them till golden brown.

Fish Cordon Blue is ready to fry

Fish Cordon Bleu is ready to fry

Fish Cordon Blue is ready to serve

Fish Cordon Bleu is ready to serve

Transfer them on a paper towel and then cut diagonally in gentle hand.

Serve hot with mustard sauce , chopped parsley and salad.

Note :

  1. You can also deep fry the fillets. Always maintain the oil temperature moderately hot.

Prawn Cutlet

Prawn cutlet is the new addition to my cutlet or crockett family. Never have I thought that cutlets can be made of prawns. I wondered, prawns, how big they are, could not make cutlet. Then I learn the trick that one should spread the flesh like its two wings to give it a cutlet shape. Of course, you need the big sized tiger prawns for that.

Prawn cutlet is quite heavy as a snack with thick coated envelopes and thoroughly enjoyable with a sip of tea. Try it out.

Delicious Prawn Cutlet

Delicious Prawn Cutlet

Ingredients for 2 pieces :

  1. Tiger prawn – 2
  2. Onion (small) – ½
  3. Garlic – 1 or 2 cloves
  4. Ginger – less than ½” piece
  5. Green chilli – 2
  6. Coriander leaf paste – 1 tbspoon heap
  7. Tomato sauce – 1 tbspoon
  8. Vinegar – 1 teaspoon
  9. Mustard oil – 1 tbspoon
  10. Egg – 2
  11. Breadcrumbs to coat
  12. Flour – 1½ tbspoon
  13. Baking powder – ½ teaspoon
  14. Chilli oil – 1 tbspoon
  15. Sugar – 1 teaspoon
  16. Salt to taste
  17. Cooking oil for deep frying

Procedure :

Remove the shell and head of the prawns, keeping the tail intact. Devein and clean them properly. While deveining, make a deep slit along the center of the prawn and then flat it to give a triangular shape. Hammer the flattened prawns lightly with knife so that the ingredients can go well into it while marination.

Tiger prawns

Tiger prawns

After sliting & spreading the prawns

After sliting & spreading the prawns

Now make a smooth paste with onion, ginger, garlic and green chilies. In a small bowl mix the prepared paste with coriander leaf paste, tomato sauce, vinegar, mustard oil, ½ teaspoon sugar and salt.  Now spread this mixture on the open surface of the prawn and keep it in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.

After that, spread breadcrumbs on a plate and place the prawns with their bare surface on it. Now coat both the surfaces well with breadcrumbs. Press them by hand on flat work surface to give cutlet like shape. Use a knife to make the cutlets even, through the edges.  Beat a single egg in a bowl and dip the coated prawn into it and again cover with bread crumbs.

Prawns covered with spicy mixture

Prawns covered with spicy mixture

After the bread crumbs coating

After the bread crumbs coating

Now make a batter with flour, baking powder, chilli oil, remaining sugar, salt and water (as needed). The batter should not be too thick or thin.

Heat sufficient amount of oil for deep frying the cutlets over medium flame.

Now dip the cutlets into the prepared batter and fry as soon as the oil gets moderately hot. Take them out as they turn crispy and golden brown.

Serve them hot with tomato sauce or mustard sauce (kasundi) and salad.

Prawn cutlet is ready to be served

Prawn cutlet is ready to be served

Note :

  1. For making chilli oil, heat 1 tbspoon of oil over medium flame. Add 1 teaspoon red chilli flakes or 2 dry red chillies into it. After 2-3 minutes put the gas off, pour the oil in a bowl and let the chillies infuse into it for at least 1 hour. The longer you leave, the hotter oil will be.
  2. You can also add Mint leaf paste in the mixture for marination. I am not a big fan of mint flavour, so I skipped that.
  3. You can also skip the batter and fry only bread crumbs coated cutlet.
  4. The oil should be moderately hot while frying the cutlets otherwise the batter envelope will burn and the prawn inside will remain uncooked.