The word Paturi literally means wrapped in leaves. Traditionally kolapata or banana leaves are used to prepare paturis. They not only serve as a wrap to parcel the fish but also imparts their flavor to the dish. Soft under matured banana leaves are perfect to use for paturi as they fold easily without ripping. Other leaf choices for making paturi are pumpkin leaves, colocasia leaves and gourd leaves. Paturi wrapped in each of these different leaves tastes different due to the flavor of the leaves.
While I have learned to make paturi from my grandmother, I totally believe in transferring tradition. Therefore, whenever I make paturi, my son always becomes a part of the process. While for him it is just a game, I tacitly transfer tradition to my next generation.
While most paturis are prepared with mustard sauce, my thakuma (grandmother) prepared this paturi with motor daal. But according to Bengali tradition, you might call this a non-vegetarian paturi since the recipe uses garlic in this preparation.
- 2 tender radish/mulo
- ½ cup of motordal/yellow split peas
- ¼ cup Narkel kora/ground coconut
- 2 cloves of garlic minced
- 2 green chilies
- 2 tablespoons of chopped coriander leaves
- 5 tablespoons of mustard oil
- Salt to taste
- 2 big kola pata/banana leaves
- Wash and soak the motor daal/yellow split pea for about an hour.
- Strain the water from the daal and grind the daal to a fine paste. Add minimum amount of water while blending.
- Grate the radish and keep it aside. If the grated radish releases water, squeeze the radish and remove all the excess water. (I have used the big holed grater and therefore my radish didnot release any water)
- Now, add the minced garlic, ground daal, 2 tablespoons of mustard oil, ground coconut and coriander leaves to the mixture. Salt should be added last. This is because, on addition of salt, the radish releases a lot of water.
- Wash and cut the banana leaves into rectangular sheets, about 20 cm by 20 cm works fine. Gently toast them on a pan set on low medium heat. This will increase the pliability of the banana leaves, ensuring that they don’t crack when folded. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Take one banana leaf. Sprinkle about ½ teaspoon of mustard oil at the centre of the banana leaf.
- Divide the radish mixture into 8 equal parts. Take one part of the radish mixture and place it on the oiled banana leaf. With your fingers gently shape the radish mixture into rectangular shape. Do not worry if it is not evenly shaped.
- Now place one green chili on the radish mixture and splash a teaspoon of mustard oil on it.
- Carefully wrap the radish mixture with the banana leaf making sure that it is fully covered. If you find that your leaf is torn, wrap another layer of leaf around it or change the leaf. Tie this parcel up securely with a cotton string
- Heat a frying pan, coat the pan with a little vegetable oil and cook the parcel(s) for about 5-6 minutes on each side on medium low flame.
- Remove the parcels from the frying pan. Serve with steamed rice
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