Monday, 9 September 2013

Kumro Shaker Chorchori (Vegetable medley with Pumpkin leaves)

First of all Happy Ganesh Chaturthi to all my readers!

It's a holiday for me and working for my husband so it had be relaxed day. The community hall of our society is being prepped up for the pujas. In almost all Marathi homes Ganesh puja is arranged just Laxmi puja is arranged in almost all Bengali household.

A holiday is meant to be enjoyed, so I had thought that my lunch would consist of "Seddho Bhat" (boiled vegetables with rice and a dash of Ghee) which is one of my favorite also. Which means spending hardly 10 minutes in the kitchen in the whole day. So far so good.

After my hubby left for office in the morning I went down to get milk and bread from the market. While coming back just round the serpentine bend of our society we have a green patch where plants grow untended.Among them I had noticed a Pumpkin plant growing. The Marathis dot seem to have a weakness for those but a true Bengali like me can never ignore such a delectable Pumpkin creeper when she sees one. Especially in this part of the country you can never get "Kumro Shak" (Pumpkin leaf) readily at the vegetable mart. This particular creeper had been growing for almost two months (from the time we moved here) and from then on I had an eye for it. The bright yellow blossoms on it occasionally would leave me craving for "Kumro fuler bora" (pumpkin blossom fritters) and I had to literally fight with my goodwill not to go and pick them. It would not have been such an easy task to resist the temptation had the creeper been any close to the serpentine road. But it was almost like 7-8 feet away from the road and had dense wild shrubs growing all around it. There was no guarantee of me being able to pick the flowers or the leaves without  getting bitten by a snake or any other wild insects. Also I thought if anyone from my society would see me rummaging among the wild shrubs they would definitely think I had gone bananas.

But today while coming home I noticed that the creepers had grown quite a lot due to the rains in the past 2-3 days and was almost a feet away from the road. The creeper was looking much more luscious today and it was too hard to resist anymore. I looked around to make sure no one was noticing me before I jumped in and quickly tore away a few of the tender leaves from the stem. With the finesse of a seasoned criminal, the crime was neatly committed in a matter of seconds and I was out of the shrubs putting up a nonchalant face as if nothing had happened.

I raced home and only after bolting the door of my apartment did I flash a triumphant smile. :)

I had all the other ingredients required and hence immediately got down to make "Kumro shaker chorchori" (Vegetable  medley with Pumpkin leaves)

Preparation Time: 10 minutes 

Cooking Time: 15 minutes


Cuisine:Bengali (Family recipe)
  • Kumro Shak (Pumpkin leaves) - 6 big
  • Pumpkin -200 gm
  • Small Brinjal - 2 Medium
  • Carrot -1 medium
  • Potato - 1 medium
  • Panch Foron (5 spice mix) - 1 tsp
  • Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
  • Mustard Powder/Mustard paste - 1tsp
  • Kashundi (pungent mustard sauce) - 1 tsp (Optional)
  • Ginger - 2 inch (grated)
  • Bay Leaf - 2
  •  Dry Red Chilli - 2
  • Turmeric powder - 2 tsp
  • Salt to taste
  • Sugar to taste
  • Mustard Oil 

1.    Clean the shak and cut them finely

 2. Dice all the other vegetables into same size 

3. Grind the mustard seeds coarsely with a mortar Pestle

4. Soak the Mustard powder (I used Sunrise Mustard powder) in 1 tsp of water. Else make a paste of 1 tsp mustard seeds

5. Take mustard oil in a wok and heat it. When the oil is fragrant toss in all the vegetables except the shak. Saute for 2-3 minutes and transfer them to a pressure cooker. Add the shak. Sprinkle 1/2 spoon of turmeric. Add almost 2 cup of water and let it cook till one whistle.

6. When the first whistle comes, switch off the gas and put the cooker under cold running water. The pressure will get released and you would be able to open the cooker immediately. This way the color of the green shak would  preserved.
Drain the vegetable stock into a bowl separately and keep aside.

7. Heat Mustard oil in a wok and toss in the 5 foron, ground mustard seeds, Bay leaf and dried red chilli. 

8. When the spices are fragrant add the mustard paste. Mix well.

9. Add all the boiled vegetables and stir fry them. Add the vegetable stock as required to keep the consistency moist. 

10. When the vegetables are almost cooked, add grated ginger and kashundi. Cook for 3-4 minutes.

11. Before removing from the flame sprinkle a spoon of mustard oil for a strong flavour.

Serve with steam rice and Kolai daal.

Sending this to Cooking 4 all Seasons' "Side Dish Mela" event and Pari & Jiya's "Only Traditional Recipe".

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