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Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Makar Sankranti Special recipe : Gurer Patishapta(Bengli rice crepes stuffed with coconut with date palm jaggery)

Wishing all my readers, blog followers and blogger buddies a happy, healthy and happening New Year. Hope you had a nice start.

I want to start my first blogpost with a sweet native to my place, Bengal. It's a very special sweet made during this time of the year. Mid of this month, January marks an auspicious occasion, Makar Sankranti, which is celebrated throughout India. In Bengal, it is known as Poush Parbon or Poush Sankranti. This festival is to mark the harvest festival of India. The festival of Makar Sankranti is highly regarded by the Hindus from North to down South. The day is known by various names and a variety of traditions are followed in different parts of India.
  In Bengal, we make different varieties of special sweet, known as Pitha, to celebrate this harvest festival, where rice is always the main ingredient. This year Poush Samkranti is just around the corner and in all bengali households, all have started preparing Pithas already. I'll share one such PITHA recipe today which I prepared this year few days back.

PATISHAPTA PITHA : It's a very common and most favorite pitha preperation of Bengalis. It's a crepe made of suji/semolina, rice flour and wheat flour/maida and stuffed with either sweet coconut sweetened with sugar/jaggery or Khoya/Mawa filling. It's so delicious that you won't able to control yourself once you taste it. I posted this patishapta recipe before which is sweetened with sugar, today I'll share the recipe of Patishapta which is totally made with date palm jaggery or nalen gur. This variety is superbly delicious and healthy as well. Check the basic recipe here where I added step-by-step pics for easy understanding. Follow the process from this post - Patishapta Pitha. Below is the can see the difference in color of both the varieties.  

You Need :

For Crepes :: 
Semolina or Suji : 1/2 cup
Rice flour/Chal guro : 1 cup
Maida(Plain white flour) : 1 cup
Milk : 1/2 cup
Khejur er Patla Gur( liquid date palm jaggery) : 1/2 cup or as needed
Ghee(clarified butter) + Vegetable oil - can use both together for shallow frying

For Stuffing ::
Freshly grated coconut : 1 and 1/2 cup
Khejur er gur(liquid or solid): 1/2 cup (use as per your taste)
Cardamom powder : 2 tbsp.

How To :  
  • To make the stuffing : Grate the coconut. In a karahi or pan, stir together the coconut, jaggery/gur and mix. Stir continuously. First, this mixture will be sticky, so continue stirring and cooking this mixture. The mixture is ready when it won't stick to the pan anymore and come everything together as a ball. Take pan out of heat and sprinkle cardamom powder over it and give a good stir. Cool the stuffing before making the crepes.
  • To make the crepe or outer layer : Soak the semolina/suji in milk for 30 to 45 minutes. In there, add flour/maida, rice flour and mix to make a smooth batter without lumps. Add jaggery little at a time, checking the sweetness level as per your taste. The batter should be nor too thin, nor too thick, it should be free flowing smooth batter.
  • Frying the crepes : After you make the batter, it's time to make the crepes or outer layer. For that, heat a wide frying pan or tawa, preferably non-stick one and grease with a drop of ghee. Carefully, swirl pan around so that pan is coated evenly with the hot ghee.
  1. Drop 2 tablespoon of batter into the frying pan and swirl pan around to make a round crepe (do it quick before the batter sets), around 3-4 inch in diameter. Make the crepe as thin as possible.
  2. Allow batter to set, in medium-low flame and cook until crepe turns very light brown. Now flip to the other side and cook till turns light brown, again flip to the other side.  
  3. Put little amount of stuffing at the one end of the crepe like in this picture and then fold upto the other end. Remove from the pan and repeat the steps to make more patishaptas. 
  4. Serve warm or cold.

Here are some more sweets/pitha recipe which is usually made during Poush Sankranti from my blog ::

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