Friday 16 March 2012


'You are impossible to live with!' was the retort to my 'you are so difficult to live with!' In a rishta where each one thinks this of the other, there may be no redemption. Or there maybe. If you are bhai-behen. There were other such strong sentiments that spiced up our life. 'Didi tui na khoob paka!' Paka(ripe, Bangla)was used in derision to refer to an oversmart attitude. I, of course, thought the same about him. This was before bodo Didi happened. What will Bhaiyu say to the roll back or resign threat? You did not konsaalt me. Theyarphore you haebh to pay phor it. How does one handle such pakas? Kaat moshan. Cholbe na cholbe na!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              We should get Bodo Di to meet Ma. She will make her sit like her own daughter & inspire her to be a visionary. Koto din aar immachurity dekhabe, she will reprimand her. As Didi sits with her head hanging in shame, Ma will give her signature shot, 'ki decision niley?' For once Didi will be at a loss of words. Ma will insist she have Machcher Jhol bhaat with us before she leaves. Aaj shukto baniyechchi. Kheye jao, matha ta thanda thakbe. Didi will eat her humble jhol quietly, not before Ma sees her oph with a matronly bhalo theko.
                                                                                                            Apart from East Bengal Mohun Bagan & Didi's strikes, what defines a Bangali is Machcher Jhol, fish cooked in thin gravy. Nitin shares stories of his Kolkata days when a neighbour beat his wife if she failed to make jhol someday! While this is an anomaly, what is not is man's fascination for good food & good-you-know-what.  

1. Fish pieces(rohu/katla/any)
2. Potato & Brinjal(see pic for cut)
3. 1-2 green chilles- slit
4. 1/4tsp kalonji/kala zeera
5. 1/4tsp zeera powder
6. 1tsp chopped coriander
7. 1/4tsp turmeric powder
8. Salt to taste
9. Refined/Mustard oil to cook 
1. Coat fish with turmeric & salt and leave for ten mins.
This reduces the fishy smell & prevents you from running out of the house!
2. Wash the marinade & shallow fry the fish in hot oil.
Add fresh salt & turmeric.
Keep fried fish aside. 

3. In the same oil, splutter kalonji, add zeera powder & saute the potatoes for 5 mins on high flame.
4. Add water to the fried potatoes, add the brinjal & green chillies, cover the wok & let the vegetables cook on medium flame.

5. When the vegetables are almost done, drop in the fish pieces
& let jhol simmer for 5-7 minutes. Add chopped coriander in the last one minute.  

Serve Jhol with gorom bhaat and revel in the nirvana look on their faces.

"Hello, aunty, aapne kya khilaya tha Didi ko? Shukto...maachher jhol? Bahut shant hain jabse aapse mil ke aayein hain....'

That was Trivedi Ji on line.                                                                            



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