Monday, August 19, 2013

E(n)chor Chingri

"E(n)chore paka" is one of the most common Bengali idioms that senior people often use to define younger generation. Obviously in a very sarcastic way! It means "ripened/matured before age". "E(n)chor"/ "Ichor" is what we call raw jack fruits in Bengali. And ripened ones are known as "Ka(n)thal"..which is eaten as fruit.
Green jack fruit is a very popular early-summer vegetable in Bengali kitchen. This is also known as "gaach pa(n)tha" (vegetarian meat). It is cooked in different ways in other parts of India. Even this tropical fruit/vegetable is very popular in other South Asian countries like Malaysia, Philippines etc. This is one of my most favourite vegetables.
Ma used to make "E(n)chorer dalna, kalia" etc...and of course "E(n)chor chingri" (Raw jack fruit curry with shrimp). This is my favourite. Sharing my family recipe here.


Ingredients for "E(n)chor Chingri":

  1. Raw jack fruit 300-350 gm ( medium cubes)
  2. Potato 2 medium size (medium cubes)
  3. Shrimps 25-30 pieces (decent size...de-shelled and de-veined..you can keep the tails if you wish)
  4. Tomato 1 large (finely chopped)
  5. Onion 2 medium size (thinly sliced)
  6. Ginger paste 2 table spoon
  7. Garlic paste 1 table spoon
  8. Chilli paste 2-3 chillies (or according to your tolerance)
  9. Cumin & coriander powder 1 tea spoon each
  10. Turmeric powder as required
  11. Chilli powder 1 tea spoon (or according to your tolerance)
  12. Garam masala powder 1/4 tea spoon (cardamom, cinnamon and clove)
  13. Salt & sugar to taste
  14. Cinnamon 2-3 1 inch stick
  15. Green cardamom 3 
  16. Bay leaf 1 
  17. Dry red chilli 1
  18. Mustard oil 4 table spoon
  19. Ghee/clarified butter 1 tea spoon

How to prepare "E(n)chor Chingri":
  • Wash and boil raw jack fruit pieces with salt until more than half-cooked. Save the stock.
  • Wash shrimps and dry them on kitchen towel. Marinate with salt and turmeric powder.
  • Heat oil in a pan. Fry potato cubes with little salt and few pinches turmeric powder. Strain and take out from oil. Keep aside.
  • Drain the water from marinated shrimps. Fry them for 2 minutes. Strain them and take out from oil. Keep aside.
  • Add cinnamon sticks, cardamom pods, bay leaf and dried red chilli to remaining oil. Fry for few seconds or until nicely aromatic.
  • Add onion slices. Fry until soft, translucent and browned at the edges.
  • Add garlic, ginger and chilli paste. Fry for 2-3 minutes. Now add chopped tomato. Fry tomatoes till soft and mushy. Then add cumin-coriander-turmeric & chilli powder. 
  • Cook over medium heat until spices are cooked and and oil starts separating from spices. Add salt and sugar. Incorporate with spices properly.
  • Add fried potato cubes now. Stir & mix well. Cover it and cook over low heat until potatoes are almost cooked.
  • Add boiled jack fruits now. Fry for another 2 minutes. Add 1 cup (or more if you want more gravy) stock from boiled jack fruit. Bring it to shimmer. Add shrimps. Cook covered over low heat until everything is cooked. Add garam masala powder. Take out the cover And adjust gravy. Check the seasoning before you turn off the heat.
  • Add ghee and it's ready to serve. Enjoy "E(n)chor Chingri" with a bowl of steaming hot rice.

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