Keema Ghugni or Mangsher Ghugni (Dried Yellow Peas cooked with Mutton keema)

Ghugni is quite a popular street food in Kolkata which finds a resonance with my childhood and growing up in the city. I still have a vivid memory of the street hawkers carrying a large bowl of ghugni on the flame, roamed around the streets in the evening, calling for the buyers with a signature yell. Ghugni used to be a lucrative tiffin snack at the school gates with a piece of bread too. For those who had never heard about it, Ghugni is actually a spicy curry prepared with dried yellow peas which is  known as ‘ghugnir mator’ in Bengali. Pretty riveting in the tongue, Ghugni remains still a favourite and I use the following space to describe its recipe although slightly in a different mould. Here I will add Mutton keema in the Ghugni which makes it even more compelling for the non-vegetarians. Must admit although that is not my innovation at all. In fact ‘keema ghugni’ or ‘mangsher ghugni’ is also immensely popular in Bengal. Happy cooking.

Keema Ghugni (Dried Yellow Peas cooked with Mutton keema)

Keema Ghugni (Dried Yellow Peas cooked with Mutton keema)

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Chettinad Chicken

Today I am presenting quite a different Chicken curry which hails from the state of Tamil Nadu. The name ‘Chettinad’ is associated with the place of its origin, Chettinad. Alike any other preparation from south India, it also has the signatory flavour of curry leaves and coconut. Due to the substantial use of black peppercorns, the dish features in the hot and spicier end compared to the usual chicken curries. This far-from-mild, dry chicken curry can be a good accompaniment with rice, roti or paratha.

Chettinad Chicken

Chettinad Chicken

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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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Prawn Curry with a little Shahi touch

I just love prawns in any form and take a fancy trying new recipes with it. Generally I go around few common Bengali recipes of prawn curries. Though this time a little touch of rose and kewra water has lifted the curry dish to an altogether a new level what I may call it ‘shahi’. I have found the recipe in one of a cooking shows and gave it a try to pose a challenge for my tasting buds. Indeed the tongue got amazed. It goes well with plain rice or pulao. Just give it a try for a change.

Prawn Curry with a little Sahi touch

Prawn Curry with a little Sahi touch

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Tilapia Fish Curry

Tilapia does not really fall in to the elite class of fishes. Somehow living in the fringe for long, it starts getting its share of appreciation off late. What is interesting about Tilapia is its universal presence and found almost everywhere on the globe. A little search on the youtube also shows that Grilled Tilpia is one of its most popular preparation.  However here I share a more traditional Tilapia fish curry which can be cooked happily once in a while. Not too spicy, the gravy consists of slice of onions and a few green chilly which is quite tasty. And Tilapia has its nice taste too.

Tilapia fish curry

Tilapia fish curry

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Rui Macher Kalia (Rohu fish in rich gravy)

Fish Kalia is a Bengali delicacy often made in occasions like marriage ceremony, rice-eating ceremony etc. Being rich and spicy, it often features in Sunday lunch menu for full relish. It is prepared of Rohu or Katla fish and made into a rich spicy gravy. Vastly different from the usual “macher jhol’, fish Kalia carries certain aristocracy with it and is an absolute delight for voracious fish loving non-vegetarians.

Rui macher kalia (Rohu fish in rich gravy)

Rui macher kalia (Rohu fish in rich gravy)

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Rui Macher Batichachchori (‘Dam’ cooked Rahu fish with Potato & Onion)

‘Batichachchori’ is a preparation in which mainly potato and onion cooked together in ‘dam’ with generous amount of mustard oil and green chilli. The dish itself goes very well with steamed rice. However, we fish lovers often use various fishes and prawns as well in this distinct method of preparation to satisfy our taste buds. Earlier I already shared with you the same recipe with prawns, Chingrir Batichachchori (‘Dam’ cooked Prawn with Potato & Onion). Today Rohu fish replaces prawns and makes a lovely combination for my lunch.

Rui Macher Batichachchori ('Dam' Cooked Rohu fish with Potato and Onion)

Rui Macher Batichachchori (‘Dam’ Cooked Rohu fish with Potato and Onion)

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Parshe macher shorshe jhal (Mullet fish in mustard sauce)

Long back, I have shared with you recipe of Mullet fish (Parshe mach) gravy, Parshe Macher kalo jeere-kancha lonkar jhol, which is still much adored. Today, I describe a slightly different recipe of Mullet fish with mustard sauce, which is a bit spicy preparation, although found abundantly in Bengali kitchen now and then. Perhaps, it is worth to mention here that, in past I shared a couple of fish preparations, of Hilsa (Bhapa Ilish or Smoked Hilsha) and Pabda or Pabo Catfish (Pabda Macher Jhal/Pabo Catfish in Mustard Curry), in mustard sauce. Indeed mustard sauce provides the Midas touch to turn the regular “macher jhol’ richer and tastier, however can be used for some selective fishes. Along with Hilsa, Pabda, Rohu and Prawns, Parshe or mullet fish is selective one. I hope all the fish loving patrons will like this preparation.

Parshe macher sorshe jhal (Mullet fish in mustard sauce)

Parshe macher sorshe jhal (Mullet fish in mustard sauce)

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Kolkata street food – Egg roll

Egg roll is perhaps the most quintessential Kolkata street food one comes across these days. It acts a form of quickie cheap filler when you are out on the road, feeling hungry and not in a mood to spend too much bucks. Stop by at one of the umpteenth roll corners, buy the roll which as the name suggests, is nothing but a wrapped paratha with egg and salads inside and just pass over while munching. It is amazing how the roll took over the once mighty traditional mughlai street foods slowly but vehemently in Kolkata. Egg roll however is the simplest form of non veg wraps. One can find chicken or mutton role, tikki roll, kebab roll and even the veg paneer role which are equally lucrative. I hope this recipe will give you a lead on how to prepare roll at home which you can always try as an evening snack.

Kolkata Street Food - Egg Roll

Kolkata Street Food – Egg Roll

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Tel Koi (Climbing Perch in Oily gravy)

Climbing Perch (Koi in Bengali) is a common fish in Bengali households. It is a kind of fish that survives out of water for quite a long time, if kept moist. It has a great taste and adored by all. However, removing its scales and cleaning it is not the easiest of jobs. Climbing perch or Koi can be prepared as regular fish curry or “macher jhol” with the pieces of potato and cauliflower. However, a special treatment is often given to it, for any good occasion, when we prepare ‘Tel Koi’. As the name suggests, here Koi is mainly cooked in mustard oil and hardly any water is used to make the gravy. Pretty spicy and hot, this dry dish is a real treat for fish lovers.

Tel Koi (Climbing Perch in oily gravy)

Tel Koi (Climbing Perch in oily gravy)

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Muri Ghanto (Fish Pulao)

Perhaps the most quintessential Bengali dish ever known is ‘mach bhat’ or rice with fish curry. However mach bhat takes altogether a whole new dimension with the recipe, which I share today, known coloqually as ‘muri ghonto’, or the fish pulao. Well to be perfect, it is not exactly the fish pulao, rather the ‘fish head pulao’, where the head of either Rohu or Katla fish is cooked with rice. Does not it sound exotic? The fish lovers know it very well that the fish heads are really juicy stuff. When it gets cooked with the rice, there is no doubt that muri ghonto tastes just out of the world. Interestingly, as my knowledge goes, this dish, being considerably spicy, should be enjoyed with plain white rice, along with the rice it is made of. Enjoy !!!!

Muri Ghanto (Fish head cooked with Rice)

Muri Ghanto (Fish Pulao)

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Rui Macher Jhol/ Light Rohu Fish Curry

As the heat wave is showing its teeth and claws, I am trying to keep, whatever I cook, light and simple. This applies to my fish preparations too. Here I share with you the Rohu fish curry, a daily feature in Bengali household, made with a lot of vegetables. I always like the idea of putting vegetables in fish curries, as the former infuses nice flavour to the light gravy. Moreover, this practice is particularly healthy and stimulates your tongue buds during scorching summer when you are drained out and hardly having a serious appetite. You can try this recipe out and send me feedback.

Rui Macher Jhol/ Light Rohu Fish Curry

Rui Macher Jhol/ Light Rohu Fish Curry

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Prawn Curry with Potato & Onion

I assume, it has been ages since I shared a prawn recipe with you given the fact that Prawn happens to be one of my favourites. So why not resume my love saga with prawn with the current recipe, a simple yet popular one. It tells the story of a yummy prawn curry, a bit on the spicier end, living happily with slice potatoes and onion. Go for it, if you are in love with prawn too.

Prawn Curry with Potato & Onion

Prawn Curry with Potato & Onion

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Chicken Bharta

Chicken Bharta is perhaps not the most common chicken preparation, you find at random. ‘Bharta‘ means minced or mashed which can be made out of any vegetables and as a matter of fact, of chicken as well. As the name suggests, you did not find a single good piece of chicken which is mashed well and made into a curry. What I like about the recipe is the flavour of kasoori methi. In fact the whole recipe is not entirely different from the usual chicken curry, save the additional use of butter and cream at the end. I heard about this dish quite a few times, but did not find a suitable recipe till I came across the one at you tube. It follows the instructions from the chef of one of the most well known restaurants in Kolkata which I share with you. Have fun.

Chicken Bharta

Chicken Bharta

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Tangra Macher Jhal/Tangra fish in Rich Gravy

A few weeks back, I have shared with you the recipe of Mullet fish gravy aka Parshe macher jhol. Today, it is the turn for Tangra fish which is almost similar to Parshe or Mullet fish in size, sometimes even larger. However, it has its distinctive taste and can be prepared in different ways. The recipe, which I describe here is perhaps the most common one and familiar to my Bengali friends. Here the Tangra fish is prepared in rich gravy, contains the flavour of onion and green chillies and also fresh coriander leaves which garnishes from atop.

Tangra Macher Jhal

Tangra Macher Jhal

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Chingrir Batichachchori (‘Dam’ cooked Prawn with Potato & Onion)

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Chingrir Batichachchori or Prawn cooked in ‘dam’ with slices of potato and onion, perhaps happens to be the simplest recipe of prawn I ever knew of. I grew up in a joint family of 11 members and thus came across different recipes from my mother, grandmother and aunts as well. This one is one of my favourite dishes cooked by my aunt. She is an excellent cook and leaves mark on her every single recipe. Do try this super easy and delicious prawn dish which can be prepared at the blink of your eye.

Chingrir batichachchori

Chingrir batichachchori

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Chicken Tandoori

Chicken Tandoori is a very popular dish in Indian subcontinent. Chicken, marinated with yogurt and some spices, is generally roasted in a traditional cylindrical clay oven, called tandoor and thus inherited the name. It can be obviously prepared on barbeque grills. But I chose the electric oven for this recipe as I didn’t have either ‘tandoor’ or barbeque grill.

Chicken Tandoori

Chicken Tandoori

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Kolkata style Fish Fry

The word ‘Fish fry’ means either shallow frying or deep frying the pieces of a fish coated with salt and some spices. But in Kolkatan lingo, fish fry is a special snack rather a starter made from Bhetki fish (Asian Seabass) fillet coated with breadcrumbs. One can just stop by any of the numerous road side snack bars in Kolkata and find the inexpressible pleasure with just a bite in the crunchy fish fry dipped in mustard sauce with a bit of salad.

During my stay in Europe I always missed the Bhetki fish and forced to substitute it with either Atlantic Seabass, Cod or Pangasius if I had any plan of making fish fries. This time I took the opportunity to the fullest for being in Kolkata and did not miss the chance to prepare Bhetki fish fry for one of my good friends during her visit to my place. She was most certainly impressed.

Kolkata style Fish fry

Kolkata style Fish fry

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Parshe Macher kalo jeere-kancha lonkar jhol

Parshe macher jhlol or Mullet fish gravy with green chilli and nigella  seeds has found its place in Bengali kitchen perhaps from time immemorial. Small in size, fitted well within the palm, Parshe has an immaculate taste which is simply unmatched. I am pretty fond of Parshe fish and invariably all of its preparations, among which the simplest one is the present recipe which can be cooked any day almost in no time . Among the spices you just need the turmeric powder and nigella seeds while the fish itself lifts the tempo to great height. So all my fish loving patrons, go for Parshe this time .

Parshe Macher kalo jeere-kancha lonkar jhol

Parshe Macher kalo jeere-kancha lonkar jhol

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Mutton Chanb

“Mutton Chanb” is one of the most lucrative Mughlai foods, I have ever came across with. Perhaps I mentioned earlier that Kolkatans are crazy about Mughlai cuisine and one can find a number of traditional mughlai restaurants over the city. Whenever I get into any of these restaurants, the order is not complete without the famous “Mutton Chanb”. This dish is prepared with goat ribs cooked slowly with various spices, however I used lamb ribs here. The essence of Rose and Kewra water adds an exquisite aroma in the food which spreads all over and everyone knows that you are preparing something very special. In fact it is a rich preparation and not a-everyday-dish which you can make once in a while for some special occasion.

Mutton Chanb

Mutton Chanb

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