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Friday, January 18, 2013

"Bangali Begun PoRa Dhoney Paata Baata Diye"

A non-recipe.....Smoked (Burnt) Brinjal with Ground Coriander leaves


Disclaimer : Considering that although this is a dish prepared almost religiously at least once a week, I NEVER ever thought it could be categorised into a 'to be blogged' recipe...it's that simple and almost a zero-spice non-recipe.... and one more thing....it's DIFFERENT from Baingan Bharta!!!

This simplest of recipes reinforces and exemplifies the fact that Bengali cuisine is predominantly less on spice and the focus is more on retention of the authentic taste and flavour of the vegetables.


Well....Begun PoRa with Dhoney Paata Baata is a slice of my Mom/Grandmom's Saturday & Tuesday dinner menu....especially in winter when fresh green corianders leaves were in abundance.

I dont know why, but'Begun porano' i.e Brinjal Roasting was / is carried out ONLY on Tuesdays and Saturdays....and strangely, I too, despite claiming to be non-prejudiced and non-superstitious and logical minded, I too roast my brinjals on Tuesdays and/or Saturdays!

Well...now coming to the basics :

Ingredients :

For Begun PoRa or Roasted Brinjal :
One Big Fat shiny Brinjal
Mustard Oil - about 2-3 tbsp
Green Chilli - as many as you want
Salt
Onion chopped (optional)-I did not use.

For Dhonepaata Baata or Coriander leaves Ground / Paste :
Coriander leaves - 6-7 bunches  or one big colander full of chopped coriander
Sugar - 1/2 tsp
Salt to taste
Green chillies - as many as you want
Mustard Oil - 1 tsp

Procedure :
Begun PoRa / Roasted Brinjal
1.The Big Fat Brinjal needs to be slit (criss-cross) right upto the stalk. Please dont remove the stalk, it helps to hold it over the flame while roasting.
2. Smear the surface with Mustard Oil and Rub it all over.
3. Hold it over the flame and keep turning it around as the flame scorches and roasts the skin of the brinjal. The idea is to roast it uniformly all over.
4. A smoky aroma fills the surroundings. And the outer skin of the brinjal is black, charred and almost peeling off.
5. Poke the inner smoked flesh to ensure its softened uniformly.
6. Peel off the outer charred skin and mash the inner smoked brinjal flesh well after adding the requisite amount of salt, chopped green chillies and chopped onions (optional). I had only one green chilli @home, hence used chili flakes for spicing up my begun pora!

Dhoney Paata Baata / Coariander leaves ground/paste :

1. Chop a colander full of coriander leaves and wash them well. Also wash some green chillies.
2. Now make a paste of the chopped coriander leaves + green chilies.
3. Using a Shil Nora (grinding stone used in most Bengali kitchens) would be the best option to make this 'Baata' / Paste, but the chutney jar of the food processor is a more convenient option (at least in my kitchen).



4. In a wok/kadai, heat a teaspoonful of mustard (and ONLY mustard oil) till smoking hot and pour the watery coriander leaves+green chilli paste. Stir briskly on medium to high flame till the moistness dries off and the paste turns a moss green colour. It's no longer watery now.

The 'Begun PoRa with Dhoney Paata Baata' is ready to be mixed with rice and savoured. 

Try mixing only Dhoney Paata Baata with hot steamed rice....I could devour a plateful of this rustic rice-Dhoney Paata Baata mix!!!


2 comments:

ইন্দিরা মুখার্জি said...

after a long time saw the amzing begun-pora recipe... the dhone pata bata is awesome! i shall try...

i make it in a little bit different way...

nowadays i sprinkle a well beaten egg and stir fry the whole begunpora on high heat...you can try this !

bhalo theko !

Kumar Mitra said...

I make it in microwave with grill function as cooking
with open fire is forbidden in Germany!

Kumar Mitra