Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Cholar Dal er Bora / Bengali Chana Dal Fritters

We generally make Cholar Dal er Bora during the Shitala Puja. On that day we eat Panta Bhat or Fermented rice with Borar Jhal or Fritter Curry. We are not supposed to use the kitchen or light the stove on the day of the puja. We call that particular day as “shitala panta”. The rice is supposed to be cooked on the previous night and then to make the “panta” or fermented rice water is added to the rice right into the “hari” or “handi” or the cooking pot of rice. Then that pot of rice is left at the kitchen counter overnight. The next morning the rice becomes a little soft and soggy from the overnight soaking and has a light tangy smell to it.

how to make cholar dal er bora / bengali chana dal fritters recipe and preparation

how to make cholar dal er bora / bengali chana dal fritters recipe and preparation

As far as the general knowledge is concerned it is known that Shitala Thakur / Goddess Shitala cure diseases like cholera and small pox. To know more I googled about Shitala puja and wiki gave me a full description of her. According to the mythologies, Shitala Thakur is an incarnation of the Goddess Durga and she was known for her skills of curing incurable diseases among children. She has four hands, each of them holding a short broom, winnowing fan, a jar or cooling water or pulses and a drinking cup. Her name “Shitala” literally translates into “one who cools” in Sanskrit. And she is assumed to give coolness to the ailing patients. (Source: wiki)

how to make cholar dal er bora / bengali chana dal fritters recipe and preparation

We eat that “panta bhat” on the day of shitala puja. Cholar Dal or Chana Dal fritters are made as an accompaniment of the  panta bhat. Some fritters are left dry to eat as they are and the rest of them goes into a nigella spice flavoured curry. In that curry the fritters become soft and puffy from soaking up all the juices and becomes nice little balls of lentil cakes.

how to make cholar dal er bora / bengali chana dal fritters recipe and preparation

Cholar Dal er Bora / Bengali Chana Dal Fritters
Yields 15-17 small bora / fritters

how to make cholar dal er bora / bengali chana dal fritters recipe and preparation

Ingredients:
1 cup chana dal
½ tsp hing / asafoetida
2 green chillies – finely chopped
½ tsp turmeric powder
½ tsp red chilli powder
1 tsp kalo jeera / nigella seeds
Salt
Oil to fry

Method:
Wash and rinse the chana dal until clear water runs out.
Soak the washed chana dal / cholar dal in water for about 2-3 hours.
Drain the water and put the soaked dal in a grinder. Add about just 2 tbsp of water and grind them until you have a smooth paste.
Transfer that paste to a large bowl and whip them with hand or a wire whisk until the paste becomes smoother in texture and resembles the consistency of whipped cream. To check take a small bowl of water and place a small dollop of that whipped paste into that water. If the paste floats then it’s ready. If the paste sinks straight into the water, then you have to whip it a little more.
When the paste is ready, add the nigella seeds, hing / asafoetida, salt, turmeric powder and red chilli powder.
Stir to mix all the ingredients.
Heat sufficient oil to deep fry in the kadai and place little dollops of the paste in that oil.
Fry the fritters / bora on medium flame until they are golden brown from outside.
Take the fritters / bora out of the kadai and place them on a kitchen towel.

Serve them hot with some dal and rice.

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