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Saturday, February 8, 2014

Mochar Ghonto ~ A Bengali Delicacy of Banana Blossom

      Mochar Ghonto is a delicacy in my native Cuisine, Bengali Cuisine. 'Mocha', (ch) pronounces like (ch) in chair. Mocha(in Bengali) is nothing but banana blossom/flower. It is dark purple-red in color, grows from the end of a bunch of bananas.                              (pic. courtesy
      In India, almost every state has abundant banana trees visible, mostly in rural places though. In bengali cuisine, all parts of a banana tree is used in some way. Like, raw banana is used in many curries, flower or mocha is also made into a delicacy, the stem(thor in Bengali) is also made into a delicious side dish. Leaves are used in serving food traditionally and also we prepare some dish wrapped in banana leaves and steamed. There is no such plant in the World of which we use all the parts. The whole small banana plant is also used in religious rituals.
     The medicinal property of all parts of Banana tree is huge. Raw banana, the stem and the flowers is specially rich in fiber and iron and its tastes heavenly if properly cooked. So today what I'm sharing is a bengali     
    delicacy made with banana blossom/flower. It is not everyday kind of dish but made rarely, because the process of peeling and cutting the banana flower is tidious job and time consuming. But the end result is truly satisfactory. So nowadays bengali people prefer to enjoy this delicacy leisurely in a restaurant. But recently, some modern supermarkets are selling this vege completely peeled and cut, ready to cook. So, one fine day, I discovered this vege in a supermarket completely ready to cook pack and picked up immediately to devour this delicacy. Let me tell you, the cooking process is very simple and anyone can cook.
      This recipe of banana flower I'm sharing is totally vegetarian, but one can add cooked shrimp in it and turn into a non-veg version, Chingri(shrimp) diye Mochar Ghonto-which taste just awesome or  Mochar Paturi (spiced up mocha wrapped in banana leaf and steamed) and not to forget, Mochar Chop(fritter/pakora with banana flower) and many more.....

  But before you cook, you need to know how to cut banana flower. As I told you earlier, I made this with ready-to-cut mocha, if you don't get, refer to this link, here you can learn how to cut this flower.
Now let's move on today's recipe :::::::::

You Need :
Mocha/banana flower florets, chopped : 1 cup
Potato : 1, small, cut into small cubes(optional but tastes great)
Fresh coconut : cut into thin slices and then chopped (some uses grated coconut too)
Ginger paste : 1 tblsp.
Green chilli : 1, slitted
Turmeric Powder : 2 tsp.
Red Chilli powder : 1 tsp.
Cumin powder : 1 tsp.
Sugar : 1 tsp.
Salt to taste
Garam masala Powder : 1 tsp.(grounded powder of 1 cinnamon, 3 cloves and 3 cardamoms)
Ghee/clarified butter : 1 tsp.
Oil : 2 tblsp.
Lentil bori/wari : few(optional but recommended)
For Tempering :::
Bay leaf : 1 or 2
Dry red chilli : 1 or 2
Cumin seeds : 1 tsp.

Some uses dried black chickpeas(chola) in this dish too, but I didn't, if you want to use soak them overnight, boil and use it here.

How To :
  • Preperation : Boil the finely chopped florets adding 1 tsp. turmeric powder and a pinch of salt till they are cooked. It doesn't take much time to cook. Drain and discard the water, when cool, mash them a bit. Keep aside. 
  • In a pan, heat oil, add cubed potatoes and fry them till light golden from all sides. In the same oil, fry the coconut pieces slightly, do not over-fry them. Remove and keep aside. Fry the wari/boris also in the oil till golden brown, remove and keep aside o garnish.
  • Cooking : In the same oil, add dry red chilli first, then bay leaf and cumin seeds, when seed start to splutter, add slitted green chilli and boiled mocha/banana blossom. Stir fry mocha for sometime, water will release from it, continue stirring till all water dries up, then add turmeric, red chilli and cumin powder and ginger paste. 
  • Mix the spices well in the mocha and continue stirring, add fried potatoes and coconut pieces now. Mix and lower the flame and let it cook covered for 4-5 minutes. Stir time to time. 
  • Season with salt, add sugar, ghee and garam masala. Mix well and cook for another 2-3 minutes.
  • You are done. Serve on a serving dish and garnish with fried boris/waris and little grated coconut(optional). Enjoy with some hot boiled rice !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, February 08, 2014 / by / 2 Comments


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