Recipes of popular Bengali dishes fresh from the kitchen

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Main ingredients:
300 gm malabar spinach/pui shaak cleaned and chopped; 1 medium-sized rohu/katla fish head cut into 2 pieces; 100 gm pumpkin cut into cube-sized pieces; 100 gm brinjal/aubergine/eggplant cut into cube-sized pieces; 1 medium-sized potato cut into four pieces; 1 medium-sized onion chopped; 2 green chilies; ½ tsp ginger paste; ½ tsp garlic paste.

Spices:
  • 1 bay leaf / Tejpata
  • ½ tsp bengali paanchphoron (whole cumin, whole fenugreek seed, whole fennel seed, radhuni and nigella seeds/kalonji/ kalo jeera).
  • 2 red dry chilies
  • 1 tsp of turmeric powder (½ tsp for marinating the fish head and  ½ tsp for cooking)
  • Sugar to taste
  • Salt to taste.


Steps:
  1. Marinate the fish head with ½ tsp salt and ½ tsp turmeric powder. Keep aside.
  2. Heat oil in a pan. Fry the brinjal/aubergine/eggplant pieces on medium heat till golden brown. Take them out of the pan and keep aside.
  3. Fry the fish head on medium flame until it becomes brown. Keep aside.
  4. Temper the same oil (add more oil if needed) with bay leaf, dry chili and paanchphoron.
  5. When the spices starts to splutter, add the chopped onion and fry for 4 minutes on medium heat.
  6. Add ginger paste and garlic paste one by one and fry on medium heat for 2 minutes.
  7. Add potato, pumpkin and green chilies in order and saute for 5 minutes on medium heat.
  8. Add salt, sugar and turmeric powder. Mix well.
  9. Now add the malabar spinach/pui shaak along with ½ tsp of salt. Mix well and keep stirring until it starts releasing water.
  10. When it starts releasing water, put a lid on it and cook on low flame until the vegetables are almost done.
  11. Open the lid, add fried fish head and the brinjal/aubergine/eggplant pieces.
  12. Try to break the fish head into pieces using the spatula. Mix well and cover it again for 4 minutes on low flame.
  13. Open the lid, adjust the taste of salt and sugar.
  14. Turn off the heat and rest it for a few minutes.
  15. Serve with plain rice.

Tips: Don't waste the stem of  malabar spinach/pui shaak. Cut into pieces and use it in the cooking,



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