This is freshly made paneer or ‘chhena’ ( a.k.a. ‘chhana’) or fresh Indian cheese. The texture of this cheese is slightly firmer than ricotta cheese, the latter being very creamy. However, if you knead it well, this ‘chhena’ becomes very smooth and creamy, too. Also, the process of making ricotta cheese and ‘chhena’ are the same. Even though an internet-search shows paneer is ‘cottage cheese’, the texture of the two are very different. Cottage cheese is loose with curds while paneer or ‘chhena’ is not loose. ‘Chhena’ can be easily made at home and stored in an airtight container, mixed with sugar and other flavors to prepare sweets or desserts during the Indian festive season! Advertisements
One cannot say enough about the greatness and health benefits of ghee, especially if it’s organic and homemade. This is an easy 3-step recipe to make ghee or clarified butter easily at home. I promise, you’ll never go back to the store for it again.
This is the quintessential, simple, mutton (goat) stew that is made in most Bengali homes on a Sunday afternoon. Of course, it is meant to be relished and devoured with ‘gorom bhaat’ (steamed white rice).
Patishapta is the Bengali answer to a French Crepe. Unlike savory crepes, Patishapta is always sweet and is smaller in diameter. It has a sweetened coconut or a fudgy sweet cheese filling. So I can rightfully call this recipe ‘Crepes with Coconut and Jaggery’.
This is fresh, spicy, and homemade minced chicken or chicken keema for the winter-struck soul.
Sondesh is a type of sweet treat that is typical to Kolkata or (Calcutta, if you please!) And it’s notorious for it’s popularity among Bengalis! It is high in protein because it’s made with cheese or ‘chhana’ or ‘chena’ that is derived from fresh whole milk. The added delight to this is the number of flavors it comes in. Sondesh can be consumed as a treat just by itself, a snack or even dessert. I do know people in Calcutta who literally need to eat one sondesh a day after their meal or that meal remains incomplete! But then again, we have to agree that in Calcutta sweets are not only popular, they are readily and very easily available in the city. Outside Bengal, it is known as ‘sandesh‘.
My joy of triumph knows no bounds. Why? You are talking to a yogurt lover about the joy of making her own whole milk yogurt at home. And my ‘success’ coincided with the 4th of July. For real.