3. PatishaptaThis stuffed pancake roll is preserved for Makar Sankranti, and is always made at home. Stuffed with a coconut and jaggery mix, it’s typically had warm because the filling doesn’t quite do the trick otherwise. The pancake batter is made with maida (all purpose flour), semolina, and rice flour, and is mixed with milk. And it has to be really thin too. In many homes, the filling is made with sugar instead of jaggery, which isn’t my favourite kind. Some even drizzle a bit of sweet thickened milk on top of the roll before serving.
5. Shor Bhaja Originally from Krishna Nagar in Nadia district of West Bengal, the Shor Bhaja (directly translated from fried milk cream) is probably one of the toughest sweets to make. And it’s not because of the recipe, but the labour that goes into it. Typically it should involve nothing but layers of milk cream, deep fried and soaked in sugar syrup. But there are certain variations that include the adding of cardamom and rose water for flavour and essence. 6. Pantua This is NOT a Gulab Jamun, as most people might claim. Made with chhana, maida, semolina, ghee, and sugar, it is deep fried and soaked in sugar syrup. A perfect golden brown Pantua will be slightly spongy (not as much as the Rasgulla), with some of the juice oozing out as you bite into it. This one can be served hot, or even cold.
7. Joynogorer Moa My heart broke the day when I discovered that even the Joynoger Moa has cheap imitations, and what I would probably eat at home came from a local shop and not Joynogor, which lies in the district of 24 Parganas in West Bengal. Made with date palm jaggery (nolen gur that’s suddenly become a star ingredient in many restaurants across India), puffed rice from a special fragrant rice called Kanakchur, pure ghee, cardamom, and poppy seeds, it’s particularly available in winter because both the puffed rice and the jaggery belong to that season. It is shaped to form round balls, and usually topped with a raisin or two. The authentic moa is never hard or dry, and ideally shouldn’t even crumble on bite, even though it looks like it would. This is where the jaggery comes handy, delicately holding the puffed rice in place.
10. Langcha To be true to this sweet, you have to call it Shaktigarh-er Langcha, because it’s credited to have originated from this town in Burdwan district of West Bengal. This elongated deep-fried sweet made with chhana, khoya and flour, with bits of cardamom in it, and like most fried sweets, soaked in sugar syrup, the Langcha is now made all over Calcutta. But the signature recipe of Shaktigarh remains. Incidentally, it’s quite similar in taste to the Pantua, which is of course shaped like a ball of sponge.Disclaimer:
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