• Durga Puja Bhog Recipe | Bhoger Khichudi Recipe | Beguni Recipe | Nolen gurer Payesh Recipe | Labra Recipe

    The month of September and October heralds the onset of Durga Puja every year. The atmosphere is filled with the sweet intoxicating smell of Alstonia and shiuli that infuses the joy of puja and winter approaching among people. In the celebration of Durga Puja, feasting forms an inevitable part. While the pandal hoppers relish mouthwatering Mutton Chops, ghugnis, Mughlai Parantha and all kinds of street foods, a bigger highlight of Saptami, Ashtami or Navami has to be the lavish bhog around lunch time served to all the pandal visitors around that time.The traditional Durga Puja bhog is prepared by ‘Thakurs’, the best known traditional Bengali cooks. The bhog which is a variation of delicious vegetarian dishes, is prepared in mustard oil or ghee. After offering the cooked bhog to the deity, it is served to the devotees and guests who come to join in the special sit-down arrangement by the pandal. The spirit of the community members reaches the zenith during this time.

    The bhog of Saptami, Asthami and Navami comprises of scrumptious home-made Bengali cuisine that includes khichuri, chachari, beguni, chatni, mishti doi, loochi, begun bhaja, badha kopi, pulao, aludum, chatni, rasogolla, shukto, alu bhaja, alu fulkopi, etc. For Ashtami, which is considered to be the most important day of the festival, luchi, pulao accompanied by chana, Veg Korma, Mishti Doi, chutney, mishti form the indispensable Ashtami bhog. While on Navami day, it is the wholesome bhaat tarkari meal. The delicious mixed veg preparation called labada forms a special part of the bhog.

    Let’s find out how to prepare the few main dishes for bhog.

    Bhaja Muger Khichudi

    Bhaja Muger Khichudi is prepared from gobundo bhog rice for the aroma (or any other variety of rice) and   tempering of whole garam masala and other spices like bay leaf, cinnamon, clove and cardamom. All this put together makes the bhog appetizingly fragrant.

    Ingredients

    • Govind Bhog rice (1 cup)
    • Moong Dal (1 cup)
    • Ginger grated (1)
    • Tomato (2)
    • Turmeric Powder (½ tsp)
    • Red Chilli Powder (½ tsp)
    • Green chillies finely cut (1)
    • Potato (2, small)
    • Green peas (½ cup)
    • Asafoetida (a pinch)
    • Cinnamon powder (a pinch)
    • Green cardamom (2)
    • Clove (3)
    • Bay leaf (1)
    • Cumin seeds (½ tsp)
    • Ghee (2 tbsp)
    • Sugar (¼ tsp)
    • Water as required
    • Rock salt (to taste)

    Steps to Prepare Moong Dal Khichudi

    • Dry-roast the moong dal in a kadhai for 3 to 4 minutes, or till it has started letting off a heady aroma and has turned light golden brown in colour.
    • Next, wash the dal and keep aside.
    • Heat ghee and add Cinnamon powder, Cumin seeds, Green cardamom, Bay leaf and let them crackle. Once the crackling has stopped, add in the asafoetida, ginger paste and green chillies and keep sauteing over low heat for about half-a-minute.
    • Add the tomatoes, Turmeric powder, and the Red Chilli powder. Mix the ingredients well, pour in about a quarter-cup of water and cook for another minute.
    • Once the masala is fried mix in the potatoes, matar, roasted dal and rice. Add salt as per taste and pour water to cook the Khichudi.
    • Stir and cook the mix on a medium flame, before turning off the flame till khichudi is cooked
    • Khichuri is ready to be offerd as bhog to the goddess

    Labra

    A host of vegetables like pumpkin, potato, brinjal and radish, spiced with Bengal’s local seasoning a mix of five spices all cooked in pungent mustard oil cooks Labra, an authentic Bengali dish.

    Ingredients:

    • Potato- 250g
    • Pumkin- 150g
    • Brinjal- 200g
    • Cauliflower leaf- 100g
    • cabbage leaves-5/10 pcs
    • Ridge Gourd (Jhinge)- 150g
    • Panch-phoron-half tsp
    • Red chilli- 2pcs
    • Cumin seeds & powder- half tsp
    • Coriander powder- half tsp
    • Ginger paste- half tsp
    • Turmeric powder-half tsp
    • Salt & sugar- To taste
    • Mustarard oil- 10 table spoon
    • Ghee- 1tsp
    • Water- Quarter cup (if needed)

    Steps to Prepare Labra

    • Take a frying pan and heat oil in it.
    • Add red chilli and panch-phoron.
    • Add all the vegetables when the seeds start crackling.
    • Saute for five minutes.
    • Add all the spices and ginger paste along with turmeric powder, salt & a pinch of sugar and stir it well.
    • Place the lid and cook for some time.

    When properly cooked spread ghee over it and offer hot with Khichuri bhog.

    Begun Bhaja or Beguni

    Beguni or Begun Bhaja is a side dish made with sliced brinjals dipped in besan batter deep fried in hot oil. Piping hot beguni just out of the hot oil tastes the best, when cold the same thing turns soggy.

    beguni

    Ingredients:

    For the batter:

    • 3/4 th cup Maida
    • 1/4 th cup Besan
    • Baking Powder 1/2 tsp
    • Baking Soda 1/4 th tsp
    • Chili Powder 1 level tea spoon or less
    • Salt to taste
    • Chilled Water sufficient to make the batter thick

    Steps to Fry Beguni

    • Cut the brinjal into thin, medium sizes and rub some turmeric and salt on them.
    • Mix all the batter ingredients together and beat them until fluffy. The fluffier the batter the crunchier is beguni for a longer time.
    • Dip the slices of brinjal into the batter and deep fry them at medium low flame until crunchy brown. Fry them for longer to make them crisper.

    Payesh

    Payesh or kheer is rice and milk pudding flavored with cardamom, dry fruits and a sprinkle of rose water. It is a sweet dish or dessert that is offered as bhog to Goddess Durga. When cooked with jaggery it enhances the taste of the bhog.

       Ingredients

    • A handful of Basmati Or Gobindo Bhog Rice (soak into cold water for 30 minute)
    • 1 ltr. Milk
    • 1 Large Bay leaf
    • 2 Crushed Green Cadamom Pods
    • 1/2 cup Date Palm Jaggery
    • Chopped nuts for garnishing

    Steps to Prepare Nolen Gurer Payesh

    Add 4 tablespoons of water in a large sauce-pan. On a medium flame add the milk

    Keep stirring the milk till it comes to boil

    On boiling when the milk is 1/2 of its original quantity, add the soaked rice and cook it enough

    Separately take 2 tablespoons of the boiling milk in a small bowl, add and mix little Jaggery in the milk

    When the rice is completely cooked, add the Jaggery mixture and cook for another 10 minutes. Keep constantly stirring it

    After 10 minutes turn off the heat. Let the payesh cool down completely, and garnish with nuts and rasins.

    Refrigerate it for 2-3 hours and “Nolen Gurer Payesh” is ready to serve. When offering to the Goddess, you can serve it hot.

    Whether it’s a Baroyari Puja or you are preparing these dishes at home for your loved ones, always make sure you buy the best ingredients. Rishta Food Products is one of the best sellers and you can order all that you need in the kitchen from Rishta on Grofers.