Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Dhokar Dalna

Dhokar Dalna is a very popular Bengali delicacy. Though this dish is delicious, but it is difficult to cook, and very time consuming. Actually the preparation starts from night before the cooking in the next morning. Sometimes in the morning I feel like cooking Dhokar Dalna, and then to my disappointment I realize that I forget to soak chana daal (Bengal gram lentil) the night before. I never remember to soak chana daal the night before, which is the prime ingredient of the food. I want a short-cut method to prepare the dish, but, how? I don’t know.
One day I was in the mood to experiment with Besan( Bengal gram flower). I made a medium thick batter of besan and baked it in microwave oven. That looked like a cake.  Then an idea clicked in my mind. I cut that “cake” into blocks like dhoka and prepare dhokar dalna. You can’t believe that really almost tasted like the dhokar dalna. From that day I cook dhokar dalna in that short method instead of the elaborate one.
Here is the recipe:
3 tbsp. heaped besan
One medium sized onion, chopped
One medium sized tomato, chopped
One medium large potato, diced
1 tsp. corriendar powder
1 tsp. cumin powder
½ tsp. garam mashala powder
1 tbsp. ginger paste
Salt to taste
Pinch of turmeric
½ tsp. cumin seed
1 dry red chili
1 bay leave
Oil for fry

Make medium thick batter of besan, salt, pinch of turmeric powder, pinch of cumin and garam mashala powder.  Grease a microwave oven proof bowl and put the batter into it. Bake for 2 minutes. After it cools down cover it with a plate and turn the bowl on the plate. The ‘cake’ will come out on the plate. Cut the cake in to cubes.  Fry the cubes for 1-2 minutes in 2 tsp. of oil. Do not deep fry them. Set them aside. Dhokas are ready. Lightly fry the potato cubes and set them aside. Heat 1 tbsp. of oil and put cumin seeds, red chili and bay leave and fry. Put ginger paste and fry. Put onion and tomato and fry in low heat till they become tender. Add potato cubes and fry for few minutes. Add all the spices and fry till a fine aroma starts to come. Add sufficient water and boil till the potato-cubes become tender. Make   Put it out of flame. The curry should be watery when you pa curry with plenty of juice, because the dhokas will make the curry dry. put it out of flame, and pour it over the dhokas. Serve with hot rice.