Festive season always calls for delicacies and a sumptuous street meal. The festive mood seems to be incomplete without good food. The desire is even more if one is a Bengali as Bengalis are well-known foodies. With the onset of this festive season, Bengalis all across the world are rejoicing in the fervor and gaiety of the much-awaited festival Durga Puja. It is that time of the year when the air is enveloped in the realms of joyousness and celebrations. This year the five-day-long festivals will begin from the 16th of October and conclude with the marking of Vijaya Dashami on the 19th of October. This five-day long festival is celebrated with much enthusiasm. Celebrations include holding cultural programmes, various competitions, events, etc. While celebrations are a must for each and everyone during pujas, having a mouthful of mouthwatering delicacies is a must as well.
Well, if one is a food lover, here are some of the special Bengali delicacies one should try out this Puja.
1. Kathi roll
A hearty blend of meat, veggies and eclectic sauces, wrapped in thin flaky paratha, Kathi roll is perhaps the best desi invention that happened for the present generation. However, this item goes pretty well with all ages for its unique taste. So, next time you visit a pandal, make sure you taste this item in the nearest street stall.
2. Mughlai Paratha
Mughlai Paratha just as the name suggests has some kind of royal flavor in it. The taste is majestic and one should not miss out on trying this item during pandal-hopping in the food stalls which usually draws a huge crowd and this is a very common scene in the streets. This minced meat-filled deep-fried egg paratha is a common delicacy.
The popular street-side snack of Bengal is essentially a spiced chickpea or Bengal gram based curry. Some preparations also include minced mutton or mutton chunks. The perfect blend of spices with chopped onions, coriander leaves, green chilies and sprinkled black salt and a little curd as a topping is tempting enough to grab the taste buds of food lovers. So, do not forget to try this item during puja.
Any kind of celebration calls for a sweet treat. Bengalis, as they are popular for their "Roshogolla", would go crazy without sweets especially during the occasions as such. Well, who doesn’t like and crave for sweets? Kheer Kodombo (a small Rasgulla encased in kheer), kaccha Golla (a tender sweet made with cottage cheese, cardamom, and rose water) and Rajbhog are some of our chenna favorites apart from Roshogolla of course! Those who are not so fond of chenna can try "Lobongo-Lotika", which is basically a rectangular dough pocket filled with khoya, nutmeg powder, coconut (grated), ghee, nuts, raisins, cardamom.
5. Kolkata Biryani
Kolkata Biryani is a festive staple dish made with aromatic rice, tender meat and a handful of heart-melting masalas. Kolkata biryani is a sub-variant of Lucknowi Biryani. The meaty delicacy also has unique additions of boiled potato and a boiled egg to add to the delight.
These crumb-coated melt-in mouth delights are found in both non-vegetarian and vegetarian variety. While meat chops are made with chicken, fish, or mutton keema and the vegetable chops are deep-fried versions made with veggies like potato and beetroot. The chops are sprinkled with chaat masala and served with tomato ketchup or the feisty kasundi- a special kind of traditional Bengali mustard sauce.
There is no doubt that Phuchka is a very commonly loved dish by most of the Indians. Phuchka or Golgappa are deep-fried puffy balls of semolina filled with a mixture of the boiled gram, mashed potatoes and a mix of tangy and spicy chutney. Phuchkas are dipped in spicy water and is meant to be consumed all at once.
Well, while you are at your Phuchka stall, don't forget to ask your vendor if they serve Churmur as well. Churmur is an interesting snack, which is prepared by crushing phuchkas and mixing them with mashed potatoes. It is then tossed with a variety of spices, tamarind water, green chilies and coriander leaves.