The most popular and authentic appetizer for Bengalis is Shukto. It is a light, tasty stew made with a variety of vegetables, especially potatoes, bori, bitter gourd, green banana, drumsticks, raw papaya, eggplant, and beans.
Shukto has been associated with ‘traditional’ occasions and festivals and is in high demand in any Bengali restaurant.
This Bengali dish made with mixed vegetables is very popular, especially in the summer season, and eating this is very good for health.
‘Shukto’ is not the name of a single food, as is commonly believed that Shukto is like a whole vegetable similar to Dalna or Ghanto. It is done in a variety of ways, such as bottle gourd Shukto, cucumber Shukto, or vegetable Shukto.
While having Bengali cuisine, Sukto is eaten at the beginning, sometimes after spinach or fries and before dal.
So let’s see how to make Sukto, a special Bengali food, easily at home.
Shukto Recipe (Bengali Style)
- 1 Kadhai
- 1 Induction Cooktop
- 1 Mixer Grinder
- 2 tbsp Mustard oil
- 2 Bay leaf
- 1 Papaya medium to small
- 7-8 Beans
- 4 Drum sticks
- 1 Potatoes medium
- 2 Green banana kaanch kola
- 1 Bringal eggplant
- 2 Bitter gaurd Uchchey
- 6-7 Bori dried lentil dumpling
- 1½ tsp Sorse-posto paste mustard seed-poppy seed paste
- ½ cup Milk
- 1 inch Ginger paste
- 1 tsp Panch phoron
- 1 pinch Radhuni
- Salt to taste
- 2 Dried red chili
- 1 tbsp Ghee
- ½-1 cup Water
- ½ tsp Sugar
Cut the vegetables
- First, wash all the vegies well before starting preparation.
- Then, peel the potatoes and papaya. Start to chop the veggies into wedges.
- Trim the edges of the beans, remove the strands and cut three pieces of each beans.
- Chop the bringal and bitter gourd by cutting off the edges.
- Also, peel the drumsticks and cut them into almost equal pieces.
Boil the vegetables
- Next, boil the papaya, potatoes, beans, and drumsticks.
- In a boiling pot, add salt and the veggies. put in sufficient water to cover all the veggies.
- Close the lid of the pot and cook the vegetables on low heat for 15 minutes.
- Stir the vegetables occasionally to cook them well.
- When done, strain the water immediately to stop the veggies from over cooking.
- Save the boiled water for later use.
Fry the vegetables
- Rest of the vegetables needs to be fried.
- Heat mustard oil in a Kadhai/pan.
- Fry the dal Boris till they turn golden.
- When it is fried, keep it aside.
- Similarly, fry the bitter gourd, kaanch kola and brinjal one by one, until all turn golden brown.
- Once fried, remove all the veggies from the oil and set it aside.
Add mustard seed and poppy seed paste
- Now add bay leaves, dried red chilis, and panch phoran in the same oil and fry them well.
- When you can smell the aroma, add in the ginger paste and fry on low flame for one minute.
- Then, add mustard paste and poppy seed paste and stir them well.
- If your pan is becoming dry, splash in a little bit of water (you can use previously stored water from the boiled vegetables). Stir well until the oil separates.
- Add the boiled potatoes, and cook on low heat for 3 minutes.
- Add the rest of the boiled vegetables, including the fried green banana and boris.
- Next, add salt and sugar accordingly.
- Mix everything nicely.
- Now, add in the entire the preserved water from the boiled vegetables.
- Put in the brinjal and bitter gourd.
- Gently mix all the vegetables and keep stirring lightly so that the vegetables do not break.
- Now, to the already cooking sukto, pour in the milk.
- Give everything a light mix.
- Let them cook well over low heat until all the vegetables are fully cooked (about 3 to 5 minutes).
- To finish, grind Radhuni ( a type of spice) into a powder using a mortar pestle and sprinkle on the Shukto.
- Finally, add in the ghee.
- Take it out in a big bowl and cover it with a lid for 5 minutes before serving. This is done so that the fragrance of the ghee can get mixed well.
- Serve it hot .
These foods are rich in vitamins and minerals as well as delicious to eat during summer. This recipe is mostly popular with rice. You can easily make this vegetarian food and enjoy the dish.
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