Bengal is known for its rich art and culture but at the same is looked upon as a pilgrimage for food lovers. Bengali cuisine offers a perfect blend of vegetarian as well as non-vegetarian food. The secret of the flavoursome cuisine is the unique blend of sweets and spices that gives it a distinct taste. Let us bring together a few of the popular Bengali dishes.
The flavourful Noolen Alur Niramish Dum (without onion and garlic) is one of the most loved vegetarian recipes in a Bengali household, especially for the pujo days. The simple and easy Alur Dum can be accompanied by Luchi, Basanti Pulao or plain steamed rice.
(Serving for 3 to 4)
Baby potatoes: 1 kg
Mustard oil: 4 tsp
Ginger paste: 2 tsp
Green chilli paste: 2 tsp
Beaten curd: 1 cup
Dried red chilli: 3
Bay leaf: 2
Kashmiri red chilli: 1 tsp
Cumin powder: 1 ½ tsp
Coriander powder: 2 tsp
Amchur powder: ¾ tsp
Kasuri methi: 1 tsp
Sugar: 1 tsp
Gorom moshla: ½ tsp
Ghee: 2 tsp
Salt to taste
Boil the potatoes for one pressure or until soft. Once done, drain the excess water and peel them. Add a tsp of salt and give a good mix.
Fry the potatoes until golden brown.
In a bowl add a couple of teaspoons of water and make a slurry of Coriander powder, cumin powder, black salt, amchur and ginger paste.
Heat ghee in a pan. Temper with bay leaves, dried red chilli, cinnamon, cardamom, hing and cumin seed. Once splutter add turmeric powder and red chili powder and saute for a couple of seconds.
Next stir in the masala slurry and saute with the tempering for about three to four minutes on low flame till it releases oil. Add the whisked curd, stirring continuously to avoid splitting.
After a couple of minutes add the boiled potatoes and stir with masala. To this add a cup of water along with crumbled kasuri methi and cook for another 15 minutes until the masala coats up the potatoes and the gravy reaches the desired consistency.
Sprinkle the garam masala and serve with Luchi or Basanti Pulao.