By Nandini Bhushan*
From Vat Savitri to Chhath puja, and from humble litti chokha to the traditional dal pitha, Bihar is blessed with all the flavour and spirit of pomp and splendor. Eddie Kennyson rightly said, “when opportunity presents itself, don’t be afraid to go after it.” In these columns I shall not only be tell something about my native state Bihar through the window of its festival and food, but shall also offer the recipe so that one can try it oneself.
Bihari cuisine, I believe deserves its long overdue credit, as it is one of the most unexplored and under rated food today despite being full of flavours and among the most palatable cuisines. In today’s world of marketing and flamboyance, we seriously need a makeover of the sumptuous Bihari food to find its rightful niche in the gastronomical world. We need to present our recipe to the global audience, and being a food enthusiast myself, it is my humble attempt to present a traditional Bihari food with an interesting variation.
Sattu, which is basically roasted gram flour is an integral part of Bihari cuisine. Bihar recently celebrated the festival of satwani, where it is customary to have sattu with raw mangoes. It is also the staple diet for a large part of the population, and the best part of this food item is that it is high in protein and keeps one full for a long time. These days, health conscious people rely on protein bars as an important part of their diet. The Bihari sattu is a readymade, full of fibre and natural alternative to any other protein rich nutrients available in market. My first recipe is made with the staple Bihari sattu – the iconic litti, but with a creative twist to it.
Sattu ki Potli
Sattu : 200 gms
Ginger : 1 tsp grated
Garlic : 1 tsp crushed
Achar masala : 1 tsp
Green chili : 3 to 4
Ajwain : 1/2 tsp
Mustard oil : 1 tsp
Salt as per taste
Water as required
For the dough
Maida : 250 gms
Ghee : 2 tsp
Salt : 1 tsp
Lukewarm water : as required
Knead a soft dough with maida, salt, ghee and lukewarm water. Cover it with soft muslin cloth and let it rest for at least half an hour.
In a bowl, mix combine sattu, ginger, garlic, ajwain, green chili, coriander leaves, achar masala, salt and mustard oil. If required sprinkle few drops of water so that the sattu mixture comes together.
Divide the dough into small sized balls and using hands, make space in the middle of the ball to fill it with sattu mixture.
Gradually bring together the edges of the ball and shape it like a potli by pinching its neck.
Fry the potli on a medium flame in a thick bottom pan until they are crispy.
*Nandini Bhushan is a well-known food blogger. She will write regularly on food in these columns