Sukto / Bengali Mixed Vegetables

Sukto
Sukto or shuktoni is a Bengali traditional dish.
Mixed vegetables with less spices. Its taste mildly bitter and lightly sweet. In Bengali platter traditionally people start eating with a bitter dish, then main course in lunch. And the last course is sweet. Elderly people say that if you start your meal with a bitter dish then you feel other dishes more tasty 😀

 

Usually bitter gourd is used in sukto. But I heard from my mom that if it is preparing for marriage or any such auspicious occasion bitter gourd shouldn’t be used in it. That called misti sukto or sweet sukto. All the ingredients are same but it will be without bitter gourd.

Generally sukto is served with steamed rice.
Never thought of sharing sukto recipe on my blog. Because I thought its a very common recipe in Bengali household. But recently I was browsing through some Bengali traditional recipes. And noticed that every sukto recipe is different. So decided to share my both mother’s recipe. Yes my mother and mother in law both used to follow same recipe.

In Bengal radhuni is must in sukto. According to Wikipedia radhuni is known as wild celery in English. And known as ajmod in Hindi.

 

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In Bengal radhuni in used in panch phoran or five spices mix. Panch phoran consists of fenugreek seeds or methi, Nigella seed or kalaunji, cumin seed or jeera, mustard seed or sarso and fennel seed or sounf.
But outside Bengal its not available so we (প্রবাসী বাঙালি) don’t use it.
But this time I have a packet of radhuni which I have bought from Kolkata. So I have used it. If you don’t have radhuni you can omit it. I have used whatever vegetables I have. You can use any vegetables of your choice like drumstick, raw papaya, sweet potato etc.
I like very mild bitter taste in sukto so used only 1/4 of bitter gourd but if you like you can use 1 small bitter gourd.

Recipe

Potato – 2

Raw banana – 2

Flat beans – 4 – 5

Radish or muli – 1 small

Eggplant or aubergine – 1 small

Bitter gourd or karela – 1/4

Mustard oil – 3 – 4 tablespoon

Panch phoran ( mixture of fenugreek, nigella, mustard, cumin and fennel seeds) – 2 teaspoon

Salt and sugar to taste

Turmeric powder – 1/4 teaspoon

Aniseed or sounf – 1 tablespoon

Poppy seeds – 2 tablespoon

Ginger – 1 inch piece

Mustard powder – 2 teaspoon

Bari or dried lentil dumplings – 1/4 cup

Radhuni – 1/4 teaspoon

Flour or atta – 1 tablespoon

Milk – 1/2 cup

Ghee or clarified butter – 1 teaspoon

Method

1. Soak mustard powder in 2 tablespoon water, mix and keep aside.

2. Soak aniseed or sounf in water.

3. Soak poppy seeds in hot water for 15 – 20 minutes.

4. Peel and chop the potatoes and raw banana lengthwise.

5. Chop the radish, flat beans and eggplant or aubergine lengthwise.

6. Cut the bitter gourd in thin round pieces.

 

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7. Wash and drain all the vegetables.
Keep the bitter gourd aside.

8. Grind the poppy seeds, aniseed and ginger with the help of little water. Make a smooth paste.

9. Dry roast 1 teaspoon panch phoran and grind. I have used my mortal pestle to make powder of these roasted spices.

9. Heat oil in a pan. Fry all the vegetables separately.

10. Fry the bari or dried lentil dumplings.

11. At last fry the bitter gourd pieces and keep aside.

12. Add 1 teaspoon Pancho phoran,1/4 teaspoon radhuni and bay leaf in hot oil. Let the panch phoran splutter.

13. Add all the fried vegetables except bitter gourd.
Add poppy seeds, aniseed and ginger paste. Saute till it dried up.

14. Add salt, sugar, turmeric powder and soaked mustard powder.
Mix well.

15. Saute for 1 – 2 minutes. Add water and cover. Cook till the vegetables become tender.

16. Mix flour in milk. Mix well to make it lump free.

17. Add dried lentil dumplings and flour milk mixture. Mix well and cook till you get your desired consistency.

18. At last add fried bitter gourd pieces and 1 teaspoon ghee or clarified butter.

19. Taste and adjust the salt if require.
Remove from heat. Add roasted and powdered panch phoran and mix.

20. Your sukto is ready to serve.
Serve with hot steamed rice.

Notes

1. You can use any vegetables of your choice like drumstick, raw papaya, sweet potato etc.

2. If you don’t have radhuni you can omit it.

3. If you want to make it in less oil fry the bitter gourd pieces first. And then saute all the vegetables altogether. But traditionally vegetables should be fried separately.

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Mint Paneer Kofta Or Cottage Cheese Balls In Mint Gravy

Mint paneer kofta or cottage cheese balls in mint gravy. Or you can name it hariyali/green kofta in hariyali/green gravy. Whatever you name it taste is lip-smacking.

Mint is not only nutritious its also a great appetizer. A refreshing herb of summer. Mint, coriander, lemon and spices makes this curry delicious.
A perfect party side dish.
You can serve it with any bread, pulao or steamed rice.

You will love the taste of this delicious aromatic curry.
If you have green chutney then you can make it in a jiffy. I have made kofta in appe pan with very little oil. If you don’t have appe pan you can shallow fry. Enjoy the refreshing taste of mint kofta in mint gravy.

Recipe

Paneer or cottage cheese – 1 & 1/2 cup, crumbled

Cornflour – 2 tablespoon

Mint leaves or pudina – 1 cup

Coriander or cilantro leaves – 1/2 cup, chopped

Ginger – 1 inch piece

Garlic – 4-5 cloves

Green chilli – 2 – 3, chopped

Tomato – 1 medium, chopped

Cashew nuts – 2 tablespoon

Onion – 1 finely chopped

Oil – 2 tablespoon

Cumin powder – 1 teaspoon +1 teaspoon

Coriander powder 1 teaspoon

Turmeric powder – 1/4 teaspoon

Garam masala powder – 1/2 teaspoon +1/2 teaspoon

Black pepper powder – 1/2 teaspoon

Lemon juice – 1 & 1/2 teaspoon

Chaat masala powder – 1 teaspoon

Salt to taste

Method

1. Soak cashew nuts in hot water.

2. Grind mint leaves, coriander leaves, ginger, garlic, green chilli, tomato and soaked cashew nuts. Make a smooth paste.

3. In a bowl mix crumbled paneer or cottage cheese, salt, 1 teaspoon cumin powder, 1/2 teaspoon garam masala powder, black pepper powder, chaat masala powder, 2 tablespoon ground mixture and 2 tablespoon cornflour.

4. Mix well and make small balls. If require you can add little more cornflour. But don’t add much.

5. Heat an appe pan. If you don’t have appe pan you can shallow fry.
Drop few drops oil in the holes. Place the balls over it. Cook on low flame till the balls become golden brown. Flip and cook other side. Kofta is ready. Keep them aside.

6. Heat oil in a pan. Add chopped onion. Fry till onion becomes translucent.

7. Now add the ground spices, cumin powder, coriander powder, turmeric powder and salt. Saute till oil leaves the sides.

8. Add water as much require for the gravy. Don’t make it runny. I like thick gravy.

9. When it starts to rolling boil add paneer balls in it. Cook on low flame for 5 minutes.

10. Switch off the heat. Add lemon juice and mix.
Taste and adjust the seasoning.

Serve hot with roti, paratha, naan, puri, Steamed rice, pulao or any type of bread.

Notes –

1. You can increase or decrease the green chilli as per your spice tolerance.

2. If you like your gravy tangy, add little more lemon juice at the end.

3. Add water as per your desired consistency. If you like light gravy you can add little more water.

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Dhania Or Cilantro/Coriander Mushroom

Dhania or cilantro/coriander mushroom.
Easy to make and delicious dry mushroom curry. You can serve it as a party side dish too.

Protein rich mushrooms are a great source of vitamins and powerful antioxidants.
And a great source of protein for vegetarian people.

You can get two more mushroom recipes here

Mushroom dopeaja

And

Microwave mushroom

Here is the recipe of delicious coriander mushroom. Just make a paste of cilantro, green chilli, garlic, ginger, green peas and tomato. And cook with mushrooms, onion and some spices. Easy isn’t it 😊

Recipe

Mashroom – 250 gram

Onion – 1 finely chopped

Garlic – 4 cloves

Ginger – 1/2 inch piece

Chopped coriander or cilantro leaves – 1 cup

Green chilli – 2

Green peas – 1/4 cup

Tomato – 1 large

Cumin seeds – 1/2 teaspoon

Cumin powder – 1 teaspoon

Coriander powder – 1 teaspoon

Turmeric powder – 1/4 teaspoon

Garam masala powder – 1/4 teaspoon, optional

Black pepper powder – 1/2 teaspoon

Oil – 2 tablespoon

Salt to taste

Lemon juice – 1 teaspoon

Method

Wash and clean the mushrooms and chop them.
If you have small mushrooms make them half and if you have larger size mushrooms cut into 4 pieces.

Grind garlic, ginger, cilantro leaves, green chilli, green peas and tomato. Make a smooth paste.

Heat oil in a pan. Add cumin seeds. When cumin seeds start to splutter add finely chopped onion. Fry till onion becomes light brown.

Now add the ground cilantro, ginger, garlic, chilli, peas and tomato paste.
Saute and add cumin powder, coriander powder, turmeric powder, black pepper powder and garam masala powder.

Saute till oil leaves the sides.
Add chopped mushrooms and salt. Mix well. Cover and cook on medium low heat. Mushrooms leaves water.
Stir occasionally. You can add little water if require.

Cook till the mushrooms dried up and cooked.
Switch off the heat.

Add lemon juice and mix well. Taste and adjust salt and lemon juice if require.
Serve hot with roti, paratha, naan or any bread.

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Marinara Sauce

Marinara sauce.
An easy to make and delicious pasta sauce.

Marinara sauce is an Italian tomato sauce that originated in Naples, usually made with tomatoes, garlic, herbs, and onions. Its many variations can include the addition of capers, olives, spices, and a dash of wine. Source – Wikipedia

Not only pasta but you can use it as sandwich spread, with lasagna, noodles etc. Or simply serve with any snack.
After making pasta I have served remaining sauce with my homemade focaccia with cheese.

Our this week’s 134th #Foodiemonday bloghop theme is pasta sauce.

I am sharing my favourite, easy and yummy marinara sauce.
You need only few flavourful ingredients and herbs to make this sauce. I have oregano in my pantry so I have used it, you can use basil, oregano, parsley or thyme whatever you want.

Recipe

Tomato – 6 medium

Olive oil – 2 tablespoon

Onion 1 small, finely chopped

Garlic – 2 cloves, minced

Sea salt – 1/2 teaspoon

Bay leaf – 1

Sugar – 1 teaspoon

Black pepper powder – 1/2 teaspoon

Chilli flakes – 1/4 teaspoon

Vinegar – 1 teaspoon

Oregano – 2 teaspoon

Cheese to garnish

Method

Drop the tomatoes in boiling water. Boil until the skin starts to wrinkle and split.

Let the tomatoes cool down. You can drop them in chilled water.
Now peel off the skin and make paste with your food processor or mixer grinder.

If you want tomato chunks in your sauce then chop them. I like my sauce smooth.

Heat olive oil in a pan. Add chopped onions and minced garlic. Saute till the onion become translucent.

Add tomato paste, salt, sugar, black pepper powder, chilli flakes, bay leaf and oregano. Mix well. When the mixture starts to boil simmer the flame.

Let it cook on simmer for 20 – 25 minutes or until it becomes thick. Stir occasionally.

Add vinegar and mix. Taste and adjust the salt and seasoning.
Remove from heat. Garnish with grated cheese and serve with your pasta.

You can store it in refrigerator for later use. Heat before serving.

Notes

1. You can use basil, thyme, parsley or any herbs.

2. You can serve it with lasagna, noodles or sandwiches. Or serve with any snacks.

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Dal Palak Or Pigeon Peas With Spinach

Dal palak or pigeon peas with spinach.
A delicious, healthy and easy to make lentil. Make it thick or thin as per your choice. You can serve this delicious dal with steamed rice or roti.

Pigeon peas or tuar dal or arhar dal can be delicious with cumin, hing or garlic tadka or tempering. But today we will make it more healthy and delicious with spinach or palak.

And we all know about low calorie and low fat spinach.
Popeye was definitely on to something. Spinach is a super food loaded with tons of nutrients in a low calorie package. Dark, leafy greens like spinach are important for skin, hair, and bone health. They also provide protein, iron, vitamins, and minerals.
Source

Pigeon peas or tuar dal are low in fat, very high in protein and dietary fiber.
As well as being a good source of fiber and protein, pigeon peas contain various other healthy nutrients. They contain vitamin C and several member of the B vitamin family including folate and thiamin. They also come with a number of essential minerals including iron, manganese, potassium, and phosphorus.
Source

This dal is very easy to make. If you want you can omit ghee or clarified butter. You can use refined oil instead of ghee. In that case add at least 1 teaspoon ghee add the end for flavour.

Recipe

Pigeon peas or Tuar dal/arhar dal – 1/2 cup

Spinach – 3 cup, cleaned, washed and finely chopped

Tomato – 2 medium, chopped

Green chilli – 1 – 2 chopped

Garlic – 4-5 cloves, crushed or grated

Cilantro or coriander leaves – handful, chopped

Ginger – 1 inch piece, grated

Salt to taste

Cumin powder – 1 teaspoon

Turmeric powder – 1/2 teaspoon

Cumin seeds – 1 teaspoon

Hing or asafetida – 1/4 teaspoon

Ghee or clarified butter – 2 tablespoon

For tadka or tempering

Ghee or clarified butter – 1 teaspoon

Cumin seeds – 1/2 teaspoon

Hing or asafetida – a pinch

Dry red chilli – 1 – 2

Kasmiri red chilli powder – 1/2 teaspoon

Method

Soak tuar dal or pigeon peas for 30 minutes. Boil the dal with salt and turmeric powder in a pressure cooker until dal becomes soft.

Heat 2 tablespoon ghee or clarified butter in a pan. Add cumin seeds. When cumin seeds starts to splutter add Asafetida or hing.

Now add chopped tomatoes, garlic, ginger and green chilli. Saute till tomatoes become mushy.

Add chopped spinach and cumin powder.
Saute for 2-3 minutes or until the spinach becomes soft.

Add boiled dal. Add water as require. If you want thick dal don’t add much water.

Let it boil on low flame for 8-10 minutes or till you get your desired consistency.
Taste and adjust the seasoning. Add chopped cilantro or coriander leaves. Mix well and remove from heat.

Heat 1 teaspoon ghee or clarified butter in a pan. Add cumin seeds and dry red chilli. When the seeds starts to splutter add hing or asafetida and switch off the flame.

Now add kashmiri red chilli powder and pour the tempering into the dal.

Serve hot with steamed rice, roti or Indian flat bread, paratha or any bread.

 

Note

1. If you want you can omit ghee or clarified butter. You can make it with refined oil.

2. If you are using refined oil add at least 1 teaspoon ghee or clarified butter at the end for flavour.

 

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Tomato Coconut Chickpea Curry 

Tomato coconut chickpea curry.

A delicious dry curry without onion. Fresh coconut, tomato, garlic and some spices makes the curry flavourful and lip-smacking.

My mom used to make this curry with only tomato and garlic. She rarely used onions and the taste was awesome. Today I have followed her recipe but added fresh coconut too.

If you don’t have coconut you can omit it. Sometimes I also make it without coconut. With or without both are delicious. Or you can make it without garlic too. Use only tomato, ginger, coconut, green chilli and spices. You can use lemon juice instead of dry mango powder or use both if you like tangy curry.

 

Recipe


Chickpea – 1 cup

Green cardamom – 3

Clove – 3

Cinnamon – 1 inch piece

Bay leaf – 1

Salt to taste

Turmeric – 1/2 teaspoon

Ginger – 1 inch piece

Garlic – 4-5

Green chilli – 2 – 3

Tomato – 4 medium, chopped

Grated fresh coconut – 2 tablespoon +1 tablespoon, optional

Cumin powder – 1 teaspoon

Coriander powder – 1 teaspoon

Kashmiri red chilli powder – 2 teaspoon

Cumin seeds – 1/2 teaspoon

Oil – 2 tablespoon

Amchur or dry mango powder – 2 teaspoon

Cilantro or coriander leaves 2 tablespoon + to garnish

Method


Soak the chickpea overnight.

Crush the cardamom, cinnamon and cloves in a mortal pastel.

Boil the overnight soaked chickpeas with green cardamom, cloves, cinnamon, bay leaf, salt and water.

Discard bay leaf and keep aside.

Grind tomatoes, green chilli, garlic, ginger and 2 tablespoon grated fresh coconut. Make a smooth paste.

Heat oil in a pan. Add cumin seeds and let them splutter.

Now add the ground mixture, turmeric powder, cumin powder, coriander powder and kashmiri red chilli powder.

Saute till oil leaves the side.

Add boiled chickpeas, 2 tablespoon cilantro or coriander leaves and salt. Add salt carefully. We have added salt while boiling the chickpeas. Mix well.

Add remaining water of boiled chickpeas.

Stir and cook on low flame for 10 minutes or until the water absorbed.

If you want thick gravy add little more water. I have made dry curry.
Add dry mango powder and mix well. If you don’t have dry mango powder you can use lemon juice. Or use both if you like tangy taste.

Taste and adjust salt. If you like you can add little more dry mango powder or lemon juice.

Garnish with chopped cilantro or coriander leaves and grated coconut.

Serve with paratha, puri, naan, roti or Indian flat bread or any bread.

Notes


1. Add chilli according to your taste. If you  like hot add more chilli.
2. You can add 1-2 tablespoon lemon juice if you like your curry tangy.
3. If you don’t like garlic you can omit it.

4. If you like the taste of coconut and want to make it without garlic, you can add 1/4 to 1/2 cup fresh grated coconut.

 

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Zan 

After Awadhi cuisine now sharing a dish from Arunachal Pradesh.

Zan 

 A thick porridge from Arunachal Pradesh.

Arunachal Pradesh, also called “the land of rising sun”,or orchid state of india,down-lit of mountain, lies in northeast India. The state is the largest of the North-Eastern states.

This is kind of a porridge or thick broth made with vegetables and it is both healthy and delicious. This is what usually Monpa farmers eat before going to fields. You will need flour, chopped vegetables, water, salt and butter. You may take diverse vegetables like cabbage, peas, chopped carrots or even broccoli.

At first, you need to roast the wheat flour in butter till it becomes light brown. Add some water to it and stir and simmer. After some time, add the blanched veggies and stir cook them in broth for a while. This can be served hot with fermented soybeans.

Source 

Sending this post to Shhhhh cooking secretly challenge

This month my partner is Aruna Panangipally who blog at http://aahaaramonline.com/

Aruna gave me two ingredients millet flour and greens. I have used finger millet or ragi. A low fat and calcium, iron, protein, fiber and mineral rich gluten free flour which is easy to digest.  Thanks Aruna for these delicious and healthy ingredients. Everyone loved the dish. A perfect dish for winter. A very easy and simple yet delicious and healthy dish. 

Recipe


Ragi or finger millet flour – 2 tablespoon

Spinach – 1 cup, cleaned, washed and finely chopped

Cauliflower – 1/2 cup, chopped

Green peas – 1/2 cup, boiled or frozen

Tomato – 1 medium, chopped

Cilantro or coriander leaves – handful, chopped

Ghee/clarified butter or butter or oil – 1 tablespoon

Little oil to saute the vegetables

Black pepper powder – 1 teaspoon

Salt to taste

Herbs of your choice

Method


Heat little oil in a nonstick pan. Add all the vegetables. Cook on low flame. Stir occasionally. Cook till the vegetables becomes tender.

Remove from heat and keep aside.

Heat ghee/clarified butter or butter in a pan. Add finger millet flour or ragi atta.

Fry till you get nice roasted fragrance.

Dissolve the roasted flour in little water. Stir well and make it lump free.

Add 1 cup water and mix well. Let it boil.

Add all the sauted vegetables.

Add salt and pepper. You can add any herbs of your choice.

Mix well and cook till it becomes thick. You can add more water if you like it little runny. I love it thick.

Cook till you get your desired consistency.

Remove from heat. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Add more black pepper powder if required.

Serve hot in breakfast with toasted bread or enjoy a bowlful of this healthy and delicious zan.
Notes – 

1. You can add origano or soya sauce if you like. 

2. You can use broccoli or any vegetables of your choice. 

3. Before serving you can add grated cheese over it. 

4. You can use any flour instead of ragi or finger millet. 

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