Thursday, December 8, 2016

Alu Phulkopi diye Chingri - Prawns with Cauliflower and Potatoes

A few mornings ago as I rooted around in the freezer I found prawns. Later that morning as I was explaining to the hubby that I didn't need to make a trip to the fish shop immediately because I'd found the prawns his eyes lit up and he said "make phulkopi alu chingri". I stared at him in surprise. I'd never made it before. Where had he learned of this dish?! Somewhere on social media, I guess because we see so much food online every day. Well, I had everything required for the dish so there was no reason not to make it. I Googled, and looked up a couple of Bengali cookbooks from my own library and set out to make this very typical Bengali dish.
1 cup Prawns 
1 Medium cauliflower 
1 Large potato 
2 Small onions 
1 Tomato 
1 tsp Ginger paste 
1 tsp Garlic paste 
3-4 Green chillies 
4 Cloves 
2 inches Cassia bark 
3 pods Cardamom 
Mustard oil 
Chilli powder

Shell, devein, and wash the prawns. Drain well and marinate with salt and turmeric. 

Cut cauliflower into small florets, peel and cube potatoes, finely chop onions, and puree or finely chop the tomato. 

Heat mustard oil in a wok and fry the prawns for a minute or so just till they turn opaque. Remove from the oil and reserve in a bowl. 

Fry the cauliflower and potato cubes in the same hot oil till they start browning on the edges. Remove from the wok and keep aside. 

Add a little oil to the wok if it has reduced considerably, let it heat up well and then put in the whole spices. Stir for 30 seconds and then add the finely chopped onions. You can also add the green chillies at this stage. Slit them if you want more heat from the chillies. Fry till the onions start to pink. 

Now add the fresh ginger and garlic pastes. Stir and mix and cook for a couple of minutes. Then add the tomato, followed by the chilli powder, turmeric and salt. Stir and cook on a low flame till the oil is released from this mix. 

Put the fried potatoes and cauliflower back in the pan and mix. Cook for a minute or so and then add half a cup of water. Add salt. Bring to a boil, simmer and cook covered till the potatoes are cooked through. 

Now add the prawns and cook for another couple of minutes till the prawns are done. 

Serve with plain rice, parathas or rotis. Depending on what you're serving with make more or less gravy, as required. 

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