Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Vegetable Chop (Vegetable Cutlet – Bengali Style)

Vegetable cutlet or most popularly known as vegetable chop is an instant hit among all bongs especially during the winters. Vegetable cutlets usually contain all type of boiled vegetables however; this version contains Beetroot as the mail ingredient along with potato, carrot & green peas. The veggies are grated and mixed with local spices and then deep fried.

My memory of Vegetable chops goes back to mid-90s. Those years, the winters used to be really cold in Kolkata. I remember, each time we used to go for a picnic or a long drive, these Chops (cutlets) were always prepared by my Dad. He was an ace in preparing them. Thinking of those crispy yet fresh cutlets still makes me salivate. The juicy cutlets are not only enjoyed in winters but are now a popular snack in Kolkata round the year.

In Mumbai, one would either not get these Cutlets at all or will have to shell out good amount of money to buy a plate of these and still not get the original flavor. In turn I decided to make them at home and believe me, they were an instant hit in the family. So here I share the recipe with you.


1 medium sized Potato
2 small carrots
1 medium Beetroot
Fresh Green peas
3 Green chilies, fine chopped
Dry roasted spices (Bhaja Moshla): 1tsp each of Coriander seeds, cumin seeds, 3-4 cloves, 1-2 cinnamon sticks and 2 red chilies.
Finely chopped coconut
Bread crumbs
Cracker biscuits - Powdered
Oil for deep frying

  • Peel the skins of Potato, carrots and Beetroot. Now grate each of them and keep aside.

  • In a pan, dry roast the following: Coriander seeds, cumin seeds, cloves, cinnamon and dry red chillies. Coarsely grind them and keep aside.
  • Add 1 tsp of oil in a pan and fry the peanuts. Now add the finely chopped coconut and fry well. Keep this aside.
  • To the same pan, add 2 tsp of oil and then add the grated potato, carrots, beetroot, green peas and fine chopped green chillies. Mix well. Add salt and sugar (as per taste) and stir well till the veggies are half done. Now add the dry roasted spices and mix well. Simultaneously add the fried coconut and peanuts. Cook till the veggies are done.

  • Allow the mixture to cool down. Now take small portions from this mixture and give them an oval shape or a shape of your choice. You can also add some Maida (all-purpose flour) or corn flour as a binding agent.
  • In a plate, mix the breadcrumbs and powdered biscuits together.
  • Take each of the oval shaped cutlets, coat them well with the breadcrumb mixture and refrigerate them for an hour.

  • In a wok, heat oil for deep frying. Once the oil is hot, deep fry the cutlets till the outer coat is crispy and golden.

Server the cutlets with onion rings and tomato sauce.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Aloo Posto (Potatoes cooked in rich poppy seed paste)

Poppy seeds or khaskhas, most popularly known as POSTO in Bengal is one of the favourite ingredients in many Bengali dishes. You would rarely find a Bengali who is unaware of this ingredient and most importantly there may be no such Bong who doesn't like Aloo Posto.

Aloo (Potato) + Posto (Poppy seed paste) = Soul food of every bong on this earth

So how do we achieve the equation above? Please find the steps below.


2 – 3 medium sized potatoes, peeled and cut into cubes
6 heaped tbsp of Poppy Seed (Posto/Khaskhas) paste
Slit Green chillies
Salt to taste
Sugar (optional)
Mustard Oil

  • In order to make a paste, you can first grind it to a powder. Then add some water and grind again. You can also add few green/red chillies while grinding as per your spice quotient. Remember that it should be a thick paste and not watery.
  • Heat mustard oil in a wok. Add the chopped Potatoes. Stir well on high flame.
  • Now add salt and a pinch of sugar. Stir well on high flame for 2 minutes. Remember that the potatoes need to be mixed with oil properly without getting a brownish tinch.
  • Now add water and slit green chillies and cover cook till the potatoes are cooked. The water should be just enough to boil the potatoes and should not be added in excess.
  • Once the potatoes are cooked, add the Poppy seed paste and stir well.
  • Increase the flame and keep stirring till the water gets dried up. Keep in mind that the potatoes should not get mashed up in the process.
  • Add 1 tbsp of Mustard oil just before removing from flame and stir a little.
  • Serve your Aloo Posto garnished with slit green chillies.

Enjoy your meal with a simple Masoor Dal and Steamed Rice.