All of us have had one Bengali friend while growing up, right? Meals at the Bong’s friend’s house would mean only one thing – phenomenally good food. Growing up we never figured out how the dishes were made, but we sure did end up learning all our favourite recipe’s name by heart. So, in case you haven’t had one of that lip-smacking delicious and delectable Bengali meal, you now know where to begin!
Alu Posto, sort of an undeclared winner in the vegetarian palette of the Bengali cuisine, is a preparation with potatoes and poppy seeds. Since the poppy plant grows beside the opium plant, it has a tendency of rewarding a good sleep after a meal. Hence it is common in the Bengali lifestyle, to have Alu Posto / Posto bata for lunch and have a hearty afternoon sleep. The posto is one of the common ingredients in the Bengali cuisine
The Calcutta Biryani is renowned all over the country for its unique taste and elements. Although derived from Awadhi Biryani, this particular kind of biryani had been further accentuated with additions like the potato and boiled egg which has since then been the signature style of this dish!
Bengali households have invented the perfect way to make the kids eat their greens! They came up with this delectable recipe made up of vegetable and even, in fact, bitter gourd, which normally one would not be so willing to eat. Shukto is a mixed vegetable, which has a runny gravy and is incomplete without the addition of bitter gourd and bori.
Chingri Maacher Malai Curry
One of the classic dishes of Bengal, this stayed in India after the partition. Allegedly, the ghotis- Bengalis residing in India are patrons of Chingri Maacher Malai Curry.
This preparation involves jumbo prawns cooked in thick gravy dominated by coconut milk and cream!
This Bengali variation of sort of Biryani puts all hunger craving to rest with its uniqueness. Sort of a Fish Pulao, the taste of this Pulao will make you forget about all the other competitors! Beware of the fish bones, though!
A classic Bengali dish make by prawn cooked in mustard and then tempered in coconut milk finally served in a tender coconut to achieve the richness of the combine flavours!
Chitol Maacher Muitha
The name might be confusing, but the dish is far from it! This is a type of kofta prepared from mashed fish with spices. A taste of this will bring you back for more!
Bhetki Maach Er Paturi
A signature Bengali dish, where any fish or preferably Bhetki fillet marinated in a mustard and coconut paste is wrapped in banana leaf and cooked on a slow flame to make what is known to us as Bhetki Maach er Paturi! With practically no oil, this is a dish for all looking for a healthy yet tasty meal!
Ilish undoubtedly has been the reigning king amongst fishes in the Bengali culture! Traditionally in this dish, the ilish in a mustard gravy is to be cooked by steam, which is how it gets its name!
A regular item on the Sunday lunch menu, this dish has been a household favourite for generations! Be it a special occasion or a normal holiday, there’s nothing better than this yoghurt based mutton curry!
Luchi-aloo dum/ Cholar Dal
This combination is common name during holidays, be it Sundays or celebrations! Luchi is the Bengali alternative to Puri and along with Alu Dum and Cholar Daal can give other recipes a run for their money!
The Bengalis sure have a way of making some extraordinary food from simple items. Kanchkolar kofta is a kofta dish made from mashed raw bananas! Try it and you won’t be disappointed!
This is a delectable dry curry made up of banana flower, coconut and potato! The dish is unique in taste for the combination of spices, salt and sugar! In fact, to produce a caramelised texture, sugar is added to hot oil directly.
What are Bongs without fish? This simple meal comprises fish being steamed in a doi (plain curd) along minimal spices and green chillies. Even with fewer ingredients, this dish is truly delectable and a regular item on a Bengali wedding menu!
Yet commonly confused as Paneer; Chana is made by curdling of milk, which is then cooked with potato, spices and strictly no onion-garlic to give rise to this phenomenal Bengali vegetarian dish!
Bengalis love their veggies, which is how they end up inventing a variety of Vegetarian dishes which can beat any non-vegetarian dish! Potoler Dolma is inspired from the Turkish cuisine, where dolma means stuffed vegetables! This recipe involves the pointed gourd being hollowed out and stuffed with a variety of stuffing like mutton keema, paneer keema, etc. and then cooked in a little gravy!
These are small round puris stuffed with peas. This deep fried flatbread has been a winter favourite in most families and is so delectable that one can have this even without a side serving!
These are cakes, mostly another Winter favourite with both sweet and savoury version of it! Some of the sweet versions are Patishapta, Golap Pithe and Puli Pithey and are more favoured than the savoury ones!
Jalpai Er Chutney
Although one would commonly mistake it as a sour or savoury item, Chutney is a regular Bengali sweet dish which is gorged upon every day with lunch. It is a runny gravy- like dish desired to be had after a meal. It can be made with any fruit or even vegetables, but the common types of chutney are tomato, jalpai (Ceylon Olive), anarosh (pineapple), khejur (date)!
This is a variation of yoghurt, made from plain yoghurt with gur or sugar. The gur commonly used is a Khajur ka Gur or the date palm jaggery. The sweet dish is served on almost any and every Bengali occasion.