Sunday, May 26, 2013

Maachher Dimer Bora/ Fish Roe Fritters

It is said that, Bengalis are so avid fish-eater that they eat each & every part of fish. Apart from the fish, it’s oil and the head, the biggest delicacy Bengalis look forward to, is the eggs or roe of fish.

Internationally, the two most sought after fish roe are Tobiko (Japanese for Flying Fish roe, the crispy little things which they use in some variants of sushi) and of course, Caviar (Sturgeon fish roe, mainly found in Caspian Sea). Unlike those, which are mainly eaten after curing and seasoning in presevatives, Bengalis love their fish roe fresh & as fried into fritters.

Though, the more regal & hyped roe comes from Hilsa or Ilish fish, fritters or Boras are made from Rohu/Katla, the fish from the Carp family. It’s highly recommended that only fresh fish roe are used to make this preparation.


Fish Egg/roe –  250 gms (I used Rohu fish eggs)
Onion – 1 large (Chopped)
Garlic –  5 to 6 cloves (finely Chopped)
Green chili – 3 to 4 (chopped)
Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp
Chili powder – 1/2 tsp
Coriander leaves – finely chopped
Salt – As per taste
Oil for frying


Clean the roe by washing thoroughly under running water. Take it in a large pan and add 3 cups of water and 1 tsp of salt.

Boil the fish egg in water for 10 to 15 minutes in low flame till it becomes hard and slightly pink in color. Check the water level in between as eggs soak water and increase in volume.
Remove the eggs and drain off the water completely. 

Take it in a mixing bowl and crumble it into fine pieces. Add finely chopped onion, garlic, green chili, turmeric powder, red chili powder, salt, chopped coriander leaves.

Mix it well and and if needed, add some water to it to make it a thick gooey mixture. Make small balls out of it and flatten them.

Heat 1 cup of oil in a pan and drop the flattened balls in it. Fry them in medium flame until they become golden brown in color.

Take them out in a paper towel to remove excess oil. Maacher dimer bora or Fish Roe fritters taste heavenly when served with steamed rice and Musur Daal (Red lentils). This is an excellent evening snacks too.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Beetroot Cabbage Sprouted Moong Thoran

Despite the fact that deep in my heart I’m a pure unadulterated Bong, I have an ever-growing curiosity to try out food from various cuisines around the world. Ever since my marriage, I have been staying in the Southern part of India, first Hyderabad and now for the last 9-10 years, in Bangalore. I never get tired of picking up recipes from my southern friends & neighbours and try those at my house.

The one cuisine of South India, that particularly never ceases to amaze me because of its richness and variety, is the Malabari or Keralite cuisine. During Onam, the Malayalis prepare an array of vegetarian dishes which they call as Sadya. Of all the Sadya dishes, the one which I’m very fond of is the Thoran. Thoran is prepared with mainly cabbage (there are variants which use other veggies too!), cooked with coconut, onion & garlic in very little oil.

Here I am, with my own version of Thoran where I have used Beetroot (no prize for guessing….me being a beetroot fan-a-tic) along with cabbage and sprouted moong. It's absolutely easy to cook and a very healthy food.


Beet root(thinly sliced) – 1 cup
Sprouted Moong daal – ½ cup
Cabbage (chopped) – 1 cup
Onion (thinly sliced) – ½ cup
Garlic (finely grated) – 5 to 6 cloves
Coconut(grated) – 1 cup
Green chili (chopped) – 3 nos
Red chilis – 2 to 3
Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
Curry leaves – 7 to 8
Turmeric powder – 1 tsp
Cooking oil – 2 Tbsp
Salt – as per taste


Wash vegetables separately and keep them in a strainer so that water drains off completely.

 Heat oil in a pan and add mustard seeds and red chilli. Add curry leaves and after few seconds add chopped garlic and onion. Fry for 2 to 3 minutes until onion become soft. Add sprout and mix well.

Add Beetroot and stir fry for some time and then add chopped green chilli, turmeric powder and salt and mix well. Lower the flame, cover it and let it cook for 7 to 8 minutes with stirring occasionally.

When the vegetable becomes little soft add finely chopped cabbage and mix again. The idea of cabbage being added at a later stage is to keep it little crunchy. Cover the lid and cook it for another 6 to 8 minutes.

Now add grated coconut and mix it well with the vegetables. Cover it and cook for a couple of minutes.

Garnish with chopped coriander and your healthy Beetroot Cabbage Sprouted Moong Thoran is ready to eat with smoking hot steamed rice.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

No-oil Murg Malai Tikka

It’s official!!! There’s no denial that both me and my hubby are die-hard fans of kebabs and tikkas. We literally gorge like greedy gluttons as soon as a kebab platter hits our table in the restaurant.

Though we like virtually all types of kebabs, it’s the Awadhi & the ones having their roots in the North-West frontier region, are our most favorite. Of these, I’m particularly fond of the fair-complexioned Murg Malai Tikka.

No over-powering tandoor spices, no artificial color…….only pure, aromatic & succulent pieces of chicken, which melt in the mouth so easily. To make it more guilt-free and healthy, I tried out this version which is absolutely oil-free. The credit for this recipe goes to Santanu da, my brother-in-law from Dubai, who keeps on re-inventing recipes. Thank you Dada for this wonderful version of malai tikka.

In case, you overlooked the last sentence, let me take the privilege of introducing a complete no-oil Murg Malai Tikka, which is no less in taste & flavor. In fact, when I tell this fact to my guests after they have had a couple of tikkas, they find it so hard to believe that you can actually make  such a tasty kebab without using a single drop of oil.

Chicken thigh – 750 gms, boneless cut into 1.5 inch pieces

For 1st marination
Lemon juice – 2 tsp
White pepper – 1 tsp

For 2nd marination
Ginger paste – 1 tsp
Garlic paste – 1 tsp
Fresh/canned cream – 350 gm
Mozzarella cheese – 150 gms, crumbled or shredded
Cardamom powder – ½ tsp
Coriander leaves – 1 Tbsp, finely chopped
Green chilli – 1 to 2 chilies, finely chopped

Wash the chicken pieces thoroughly and pat them dry with paper towel. Prick them with a fork so that the marinade can go deep inside.

Marinate the pieces with the 1st marinade items and keep it covered for around 15-20 minutes. Afterwards, mix all the items of 2nd marinade with the chicken, cover it and keep it refrigerated for at least 1.5 - 2 hours.

Pre-heat the oven in 360 o F or 180 o C temperature. Line up the base of a oven proof flat container with 2 folds of aluminium foil. Put the marinated chicken pieces on the foil, neatly separated from each other so that they don’t overlap with each other.

Cook the chicken in grill mode for around 15-16 minutes, turning them with a tong after 10 minutes. Put the oven in broil mode and cook it for another 4-5 minutes for getting the nice burnt color.

Enjoy deliciously succulent pieces of Murgh Malai Tikka with your favorite dip and salad.


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