Monday, October 18, 2010

Chholar Dal and Radhabollobi

Okay people, the party is over and so is the weekend. Ma Durga has gone back to her husband’s home, leaving behind a pall of gloom over all Bengalis.

Monday too is staring right in the face and I am pretty grumpy. Well, not exactly that, but definitely cranky, but that is my usual personality. After a torrid weekend I now want to get back to normal life, which means I also have to update PreeOccupied.

Today its going to be another Bengali classic – Radhabollobi and Chholar Dal, usually Radhabollobi is served with Alu Dom, the recipe for which is here.
Radhabollobi is luchi or puri stuffed with a kalair dal or urad dal filling. These deep-fried delights are usually made during special occasions like weddings and festivals. I did it for the Ashtami lunch.

Chholar Dal is Bengali for Chana Dal (or Bengal Gram), cooked in little pieces of fresh coconut. Most Bengali homes cook Chholar Dal this way and its good with either the Bengali Pulao or Luchi or even some plain white rice on an ordinary day.

Ingredients for Chholar Dal are:

1 cup Bengal gram/ Chholar Dal
Quarter cup finely chopped fresh coconut + Half tablespoon grated coconut
1 tablespoon ginger paste
1-2 slit green chilies
One small piece of cinnamon
1 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 black cardamom
2 bay leaves
2 tablespoon melted ghee

Wash the Dal, keep a cup of water in it. I usually keep it soaked in water for 10-15 before cooking.

IMG_2089 Heat ghee in a pressure cooker, add the cumin seeds, bay leaves, cinnamon, cardamom and green chilies. Sauté for a few seconds and add the Chana dal with enough water to cover the dal.

IMG_2091 Add the ginger paste, turmeric powder, pieces of coconut, sugar and salt. Cook for 10-15 minutes or until 3-4 whistles of the pressure cooker go off, making the dal and the coconut tender but not mushy.

IMG_2093 The consistency of the Chholar Dal should be thick and not runny, and also a little on the sweeter side.

Garnish the Chholar Dal with some grated coconut. IMG_2118 Now for the Radhabollobi!

Ingredients for Radhabollobi are:

For the filling:
Half cup Urad dal, soaked overnight, wet ground coarsely
2 teaspoons ginger paste
1 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon red chili powder
Quarter teaspoon hing or asafetida powder
2 tablespoons Canola or Mustard oil

Heat mustard oil in a pan, add the asafetida powder and the ground dal, ginger paste, turmeric and chili powder. Keep frying the mixture till the dal loses the raw flavor and is cooked. It will get lumpy and tend to stick to the pan, its important the cooking is done on low heat.

IMG_2092 Once all the extra moisture dries up, season with salt. Let it cool.

For the luchi/puri

2 cups all purpose flour/maida
1-2 tablespoon canola oil
Oil for deep frying
Pinch of salt

Knead a tight-looking dough with the maida, a couple of spoons of oil and little water. Keep it covered with a moist kitchen towel for 10 minutes. Knead again to make the dough smooth to work with.

Heat oil for deep frying in a wok.

Roll out little discs with small portions of the dough. Take a spoonful of the dal mixture and place it at the center of the dough disc.

IMG_2106 IMG_2107 Purse the disc to make a ball with the mixture inside it. Roll it out again till the sides are even. Roll a few out before you deep fry them.

IMG_2108 IMG_2109IMG_2110 Glide each disc into the hot oil and pat with a jhanjhra or a slotted spoon to fluff them up. Turn and fry the other side till both sides are done and look golden on each side.

Remove the Radhabollobi with the slotted spoon, drain excess oil on paper towels. Serve hot with Chholar Dal and Alu Dom.

IMG_2115 IMG_2114IMG_2119 IMG_2112The result – a very festive-looking meal and an entry to Patty’s Weekend Wrap Up Party.


Satrupa said...

Dear Pree ...... Your post has left me drooling this morning. Yummmmm

Cheers n Happy Cooking,

Anonymous said...

Oh my gosh!! what lovely pics!! You truly make it look so simple & easy.. I'll give this a try.. for sure (someday) *grin*

sangeeta said...

What a feast....

GB said...

Khoob bhalo! I use that stuffing for kachoris. There goes my diet again. i 'm going to need an extra half hour in the gym now. Okay, I'll make them. (that was me having a conversation with myself, in case you're wondering. There's a fat red devil me on the right shoulder who keeps prompting me to make the wrong decisions....i wonder if she has a little bengali helper?)

Ushnish Ghosh said...

Dear Pree
I will use this seasoning black cardamom and cinnamon next time when I cook this dal. I use clove and white cardamom along with these. It will be a new flavor for me, mild and good, Ican get the aroma right now
Have a nice day

Priya Suresh said...

Cant stop bookmarking many dishes from u, dunno when am gonna try them, even the dal tempts me a lot..beautiful feast and droolworthy spread..

Priya's Easy N Tasty Recipes

Puja said...

That's am awesome looking meal..your spread looks so homely that I feel like all family members gather around it and have a nice hearty lunch..especially love your radhabollobi..the name itself is so intriguing!

US Masala

Sulagna said...

Subho Bijoya..Asha kori tomar pujo bhalo keteche.Radhabollobi gulo darun hoyeche !!

Pinku said...

Dear Pree,

Subho Bijaya to all of you...

that post looks delicious...and now I know what to have for sunday brunch..

thanks :)