In Bengal, winter is synonymous to a celebration. With picnics, parties, Christmas and winter vacation, people in Bengal are on a festive mode during this time of the year. And what adds on to their delight is the spread of winter-special treats. It can't be denied that winter in Bengal is mellowed as compared to several other states in the country, but that doesn't keep the Bengalis away from enjoying the seasonal dishes. Known for being one of the connoisseurs in Indian food culture, Bengali cuisine never fails to surprise people with its flavours, aroma and versatility. During winters, every household is packed with pitha, sweets, notun gur (freshly made jaggery) and many other dishes that make the season an appetising affair. While these food items are easily available in the shops, people in a quintessential Bengali household prefer preparing them at home.
Here we handpicked some of the best winter-special dishes that will take your love for Bengali cuisine one step ahead. Let's take a look.
6 Bengali Winter Delicacies That You Just Can't Miss:
A Bengali-style matar kachori - which is fluffy and crispy - makes for a perfect breakfast during winters, when paired with spicy dum aloo. Visit any Bengali sweet shop in the morning, you will find Koraishutir kochuri being sold like hotcakes. And if you plan to prepare it at home, here's the recipe to follow.
Winter brings along some amazing vegetables to relish - cauliflower being one such example. Referred to as phulkopi in Bengali, it is widely used in a Bengali cuisine to whip up various recipes on a daily basis. But what stands out in the lot is phulkopir singara (or samosa). It is basically a spicy mix of cauliflower and potato, wrapped in a shell and deep-fried. The inclusion of cauliflower to the samosa adds a flavour to the dish and the season. So, if you visit Bengal during winters, stop by any shop in the evening and give these hot and crispy phulkopir singara a try.
Nolen gurer mishti
Winters in Bengal and Nolen gur go hand-in-hand. Nolen gur is basically jaggery made out of date palms that adds a strong aroma to every sweet dish during this season. These mishtis are tender, soft a perfect treat for the ones with sweet-tooth. And the best part is you do not need to visit Bengal to enjoy Nolen gurer mishti. Go to any Bengali sweet shop in your town and relish the sweet treat.
Nolen gur er payesh
Made with Nolen gur (date palm jaggery) and scented rice (gobindobhog chal), this is a must-have in every Bengali household during the season. A bowl of Nolen gur er payesh is flavourful, aromatic and spells all things rich and good. If you are already slurping, here's the recipe for you to try.
Pitha needs no separate introduction! One of the most popular food items in a Bengali spread, pitha is a dessert specially made during the winters. If you explore, you will find an extensive variety of pitha available across West Bengal. While ingredients are customised as per the pitha you make, but three elements that are a must in every pitha recipe are fresh gur, rice flour and coconut. Here's one of the most popular pitha recipe for you - it's called patishapta.
Joynagar er moa
Made with popped rice and Nolen gur, this soft and sweet ladoo has created a buzz in recent times after receiving the GI Tag in 2015. It has a subtle sweetness and unique texture that makes the sweet treat stand out in the lot. You must give Joynagar er moa a try; we bet you did not have anything close to it!
If you can think of any such delicious dishes, then do let us know in the comment section below. Always remember, the more the better!
About Somdatta SahaExplorer- this is what Somdatta likes to call herself. Be it in terms of food, people or places, all she craves for is to know the unknown. A simple aglio olio pasta or daal-chawal and a good movie can make her day.