Thursday, January 20, 2011

Nalen Gurer Sondesh and Poush Sankranti...so close an association and...




Nalen Gur/ Khejur Gur/ Notun Gur, these words carry the same meaning but carries some special thoughts for a Bangali...both mind and palate...

Come winter and Bengalis prepare to buy their quota of Nalen gur/ Khejur gur/ Date molasses. All this interest for the gur is to prepare special sweets.

Khejurer rosh (sap), the sap from the date palm is collected in earthen pots and brought down from the tree-top where it is hung whole night for the sap to collect. Some people like to drink this fresh sap. But the magic of this liquid is when the sun starts rising high up in the sky, this liquid gets fermented. In villages people drink this as cheap liquor and a favourite among villagers and tribals. I have seen Ma make special preparations from this sap. She, a Bangal (from East Bengal, now Bangladesh), knew varied preparations from the khejurer rosh.

You can see your neighbourhood Kakababu or Meshomoshai carrying an earthen pot filled with jhola gur. In Bengali the liquid form of this gur is known as jhola gur. Gur has to be cooked for hours to turn out in its various forms...some sold as jhola gur, which is the preliminary form of the gur. If this is cooked for some more time grains are formed...this is the semi-liquid form. Can relish this gur as a last helping with rotis. And if you like Dhoodh roti (home-made wheat bread torn into small pieces and placed in a bowl with some milk being poured over it), sweeten this doodh-roti with the semi-liquid gur and the flavour of the gur spills in your mouth. Also those who like doodh-bhat can enjoy the gur with it.

But the most wanted form of Patali/Nalen gur is in its solid form. This gur can be stored for months...use it anytime and get the taste.

                                       A chunk of Nalen Gur

Poush Sankranri reminds the Bengali of their Pithes. And how can one not think or cook Doodh Puli or Patishpta for this special occasion. Milk, cocoanut, rice flour, jiggery are the most important ingredients in the making of these individual dishes. And the Nalen Gurer Payesh...no way I can omit this name.

I made some Nalen Gurer Sandesh. Thought I can share this with my friends.

How to make cheese:

First have to make cheese as this is the basic requirement. For this need milk about 1 ½ litres. Fresh (cows) milk preferable. If you make cheese regularly at home you can use the water stored from the previous day cheese you have made.

Put the milk to boil. If you don’t have the stored cheese water, squeeze a lemon and add 2-3 tsp of water to it. Now add this lime water to the boiling milk. The solid and the liquid separates, in other wards the milk curdles. Keep this boiling on fire for 2-3 minutes. Now strain ina muslin cloth where the cheese has collected, tie the loose ends of cloth and let the cheese hang for a couple of hours. Once the water has drained out completely, take the cheese and place it on a flat plate. Can get about 250 gms of cheese from one litre of milk.

The ingredients for Sondesh:

Cheese (home-made): 250 gms

Sugar: 2 tbsp

Nalen Gur: about ¼ cup after mashing it


Next:

Knead the cheese with the palm or with the help of a small bowl which can be held in your palm, start rubbing the cheese on the flat surface. Knead till the cheese becomes soft and smooth. To this add the sugar. Powder the sugar before adding. Knead for some more time till the sugar mixes well with the cheese. Time to mix the nalen gur with the cheese. Knead for another couple of minutes. Now the cheese is ready to be cooked.

Place a thick bottom kadhai/wok on the gas stove. Put in the cheese, sugar and gur mix and start rubbing the contents against the sides of the kadhai with a ladle. Cook over medium heat and don’t stop working with it continuously. Once the fat starts releasing it is time to taste and see if the sondesh is ready to be given shape in the moulds. If the dough is soft you’ll get the Kancha Gola, the softer version which will not stay for many days. If you want the sondesh to be stored for few days, then let the dough get harder, to get the Kora Paker Sondesh, but not hard for they will not take the shape of the moulds.

Speaking of moulds, they come in many varieties...some made of wood, other come as plastic moulds and of course the very greens ones, the terracotta moulds.





Shape the Sondesh and serve...enjoy and relish...take pleasure in eating and also let others get the pleasure of its taste.

42 comments:

  1. Gouri, you have made me drool with this detailed post and I am longing so much to taste the gurer as well as the sondesh.
    Keep up the good work.Enjoyed reading.

    FOODELICIOUS

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  2. Dear Gouri di

    Nolen Gurer Sandesh dekhe nijeke shamlate parchi na. Dekhei jibe jol eshe gache. Darun preparation. Varaitier dik diye Aamra karor theke kom na. Excellent.

    Deepa
    Hamaree Rasoi

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  3. This looks delicious n very well made, it gets better & better with each bite I bet :)

    US Masala

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  4. Making me drool..looks so delicious and cute

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  5. fabulous looking dish...mouthwatering...
    Tasty appetite

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  6. Hi Pari, glad to know you liked this post. Thanks for being here to share you comment and views.

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  7. Deepa, tomar comment pore khoob bhalo laglo. kache thakle nischoee share kortam.
    Bhalo theko.

    ReplyDelete
  8. @Sarah Naveen, thanks for spending your time here.

    ReplyDelete
  9. @aipi, comments are always welcome and so are your words.

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  10. Hi Suja, thanks dear for your comment.

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  11. Hi Jay, it was a pleasure to read your comment.

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  12. Looks tempting and delicious!

    http://treatntrick.blogspot.cpm

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  13. That looks delectable Gouri! First time here. I will pass this one to a friend of mine who loves to make sweets - and I will try them too :))

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  14. @PALATABLE, thanks.

    @Now Serving, nice to see you here. Hope to read your comments again. Thanks for the thought of sharing this with your friend.
    You too have a nice space.
    Love and:)

    @Jagruti, nice to read your comment. Thanks.

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  15. Khub shundor explanation and recipe. Khub bhalo laglo.

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  16. Awesome...Sandesh is a fav sweet of mine...But never tried with this jaggery

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  17. Sandesh is one of my favorite sweet and but never tried with gur ... i should try it ... your sandesh looks very tempting

    Super Yummy Recipes

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  18. Dear Didibhai
    Kemon achho? Anek post miss hoe gechhe..Tai aj PoDchhi..Dimer dlana theke suru kor-e. ( Eta randhbo aj).
    Snadesh er write up darun hoechhe! I have failed 100% of the time while making sandesh and given up finally.ha ha
    Bhalo theko
    ushnishda

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  19. Dear Gouri di,
    first time apnar blog e...ei post ta pore khub bhalo laglo, tar theke besi sandesh gulo dekhe, jive jal asche, ebare site kolkatai giye khub kheyechi..amar sister er blog(http://cuisinedelights.blogspot.com) theke apnar blog er bepare jante parlam..amar blog samay pele visit korben, khub bhalo lagbe amar

    amar blog-Recipe Junction(http://riappyayan.blogspot.com)

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  20. Testy Sandesh.
    I have shared an award with you.
    Please collect your award from
    http://cuisinedelights.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  21. Hi Didibhai....you made me nostalgic by posting the pic of that nolen gur chunk....this sondesh is my all time fave.. Now i don't get any nolen gur and make only the keasr elaichi flavored sondesh.
    Loved the post.

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  22. Hi Indrani, tomar comment pore khoob bhalo laglo. I'm away from blogging for some days now...personal reasons.
    Tomar blog nishchoi visit korbo. Hope to see you again expressing your views.
    Thanks for visiting.

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  23. Hi Chandrani,
    Thanks for the award. Will collect it.
    Will visit your blog and share my comment. Come back with your comment again next time.
    Till then...

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  24. Sangeeta, good to see you here. You can get Nolen Gur from C R Park. As summer is approaching, this gur will stop coming...and I've got some stock in the fridge.
    Home-made sondesh has its own taste and flavour...your elaichi and kesar ones must be very tasty...share some...ha ha ha...
    Always encouraging to reads comments like yours.
    Thanks and hope to see you again.

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  25. Pree,
    Gulmohar,
    Satya,
    A late but big 'Thank You' to you girls for your comments.

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  26. Ushnishda,
    aami bhalo achi kintu ektu basto, tai aar post korte parchina. aapni daroon cook, ek din niger hather banano sondesh boudi ke serve korben:)
    How are you doing. Missing your posts. Hope to see you soon.
    "Spend time as it comes", I say (all smiles)...True or False...

    ReplyDelete
  27. Very tempting.. Try kore dekhte hobe ei recipe ta.. Thank you so much for sharing.. If I can make this, my husband will be the happiest person..

    Bhalo Khabo

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  28. wow..looks good...yummmmmmm..
    first time here....u hv a lovely space with awesome recipes....visit mine as time permits
    sanyukta
    http://creativesanyukta.blogspot.com/

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  29. Dear Didibhai
    Kemon accho?
    Anek din par ekhan-e ese dekhlam, ami kichhui miss korini. What a relief!!
    I am mostly off blog these days...
    Bhalo theko
    Ushnishda

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  30. Didibhai,
    Onek din dhore tomar post na pe just bhablam jigesh kori, is everything all right? shob theek toh?

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  31. Dear Didibhai
    Tumi kemon achho? Anek din dekha nei...I hope every thing is fine at your end.
    Ushnishda

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  32. this looks fabulous
    lovely site following you on google friends
    nice to meet you

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  33. First time on your blog.. very interesting recipes. I was hunting for Sandesh recipes. Thank you for posting this wonderful recipe.

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  34. I came across your blog only today, and I'm so glad I found a blog of my home recipes. I'm basically from Bhubaneswar married to a Telugu guy. And I was missing home recipes, I was so pleasantly surprised to see recipes of my familiar dishes. I'm going to try all of them one by one. Keep it going and thank you !!

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  35. Dear Didibhai
    How are you and where are you? Havent seen any posting for ages. I hope you r fine.
    best wishes
    Ushnishda

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  36. Visiting this blog for the first time. Very interesting recipes. I was looking for a Sandesh recipe after I got my winter ration of Nolen gur. Thank you for posting this wonderful recipe.

    ReplyDelete