So now back to recipe writing! Otherwise I’ll never clear the backlog and make space for more exciting and new culinary creations:)! The emotional stuff will then seep into the blog as and when anyway.
Here’s a classic Bengali dish that I love and we have both at my parents in London and with my family in Bangladesh. Of course there’s a difference in the dish depending on who cooks it. Cooking is a tradition that’s gets primarily passed on from mothers to daughters so they are able to cook for their future hubbies (not a bad thing). I left home in my late teens and of course could not imagine the possibility of life without Bengali food. So my mum showed me a couple of my favourite dishes which I then cooked again and again. And if you can cook one Bengali dish then the others follow naturally. I cooked bengali chicken curry and my all time ever favourite dish in the world- bengali lamb chop curry with potatoes and tomatoes. Yumm!! 🙂 Of course only my mum’s version of the chop curry is my number 1! She is after all the best cook in the world. Anyone can of course validly dispute this with their own mothers or fathers :-).
Anyway, here is a recipe of neither of the above dishes but a Bengali Beef Curry with potatoes (we love our meat curries with potatoes in my family).
When I cook Bengali dishes I tend to add a twist like kaffir lime leaves or galangal. Both of these I have never seen in Bangladesh. Neither have I seen pak choi or lemongrass. But as I love these ingredients, I throw them in when I feel like it. For an authentic Bengali curry dish, leave these out. There are also many supplementary spices that are used to really add another dimension to the flavour and subtle aromas from this rich multitude of deliciously combined spices. I’m always amazed how so many different flavours are wonderfully combined and nurture and complement each other for the taste buds to reach new sensual highs. That must have taken centuries to get it right. The supplementary spices can include: whole black pepper, mustard seeds, fennel seeds, anise and more that I can’t think of right now.
I’m not using mixed curry powder in these recipes as they are not used widely in Bangladesh. Everyone uses freshly ground spices like I have. We do use them in London though. I’ll write about this in the coming week.