Dhoka, another Bengali special dish.
Bangali’s like to use rhyming words in their food affair also. Rhymes also have an affair in life with people. That’s something some like and others detest…here I won’t say hate, as this is very strong but I can say dislike rhyming kitchen words. Ha ha ha! That’s how life in kitchen is simplified and eased making fun as you cook…with whom, why self…talk to self and that’s one way to keep the mind occupied.
Dalna goes with Dolma, Bhaja with Bhuji, Ranna with Banna, Jhol handles Jhal , Makha has makhi to go with it…rest for you to complete.
Let me tell why I’m writing about Instant Dhokar Dalna. I was there in the shop in our block. This shop sells everything you want. As I stood to pay my money, a lady came up and asked, “Do you have Instant Dhoka mix?”
“Yes Ma’am, said one of the helpers of the shop. He went to one of the shelf in the far end of the shop and brought a packet and handed it over to her.
She read the instruction that’s what I feel for I saw her reading with intent. I paid and left thinking how people buy stuff that’s so much easily available at home.
The next day I spoke to my friend in the neighbourhood about this incident. She found nothing wrong in getting the packet. “You see I too don’t know to make Dhoka though I’m a Bengali. I think I’ll also go for it from the shop”.
I told her it was so easy to make Dhoka instantly at home. And on her request I am here writing about Dhokar Dalna.
The main ingredient for Dhoka is Besan/chick pea flour.
The spices are what we use in our kitchen every day.
Let’s get back to preparing the dough…first part…
For this take 1 ½ cup Besan in a bowl
Add to this:
½ tsp haldi powder
½ tsp red chilli powder or less if the chilli powder is too spicy
Salt to taste
1 to 1 ½ tsp of sugar
½ tsp baking powder.
Mix all the ingredients properly.
To this add water to have a smooth and flowing batter.
Let this batter rest for 15 – 20 minutes.
Making the dough: Cooking part…
Take a wok/kadhai and add 2 tbsp oil.
When it is hot add the batter to it and go on working with the ladle till it becomes like the dough of the atta for chappatis or parathas.
The dough should not be too tight and not too soft either. If it is too soft the Dhokas will break up while frying. If it is too hard it will give a hard bite not like the ones for good taste.
Once the dough is done, take it out on a plate and mix it with your hand when it is hot.
Now grease another plate with some oil and flatten the dough to half inch thick.
Now cut out small rectangular pieces. Get about 12 -16 pieces
Frying the Dhoka:
Take enough oil for deep frying.
Once the oil is hot slip in the dhoka pieces and fry on low heat till it becomes pinkish-brown and looks crunchy.
A first-timer can taste the fried Dhoka to see if it is fried properly.
Keep them aside.
Can also serve few pieces of the hot fried dhokas just as an appetizer.
For the Curry:
Potatoes: 3 big ones peel and cubed in small size.
Heat oil in a kadhai, about 1 ½ tbsp.
Add the cubed potatoes and stir fry t for 3-4 minutes.
Lower the heat and add the spices. 2 ½ tsp. dhania powder, ¾ tsp. haldi powder, ½ tsp. red chilli powder, salt to taste, ½ tsp. sugar. Mix all the ingredients with the potatoes and add ½ cup water for the masalas to cook.
As the oil starts to separate, time to add enough water to this for the potatoes to cook and the gravy.
Cover and let it cook till the potatoes are soft.
The gravy should be thin and enough for the gravy in the curry, for once the fried dhokas are added it will soak up the water.
After adding the Dhoka, let it boil for a couple of minutes and then it is done.
Time to serve and enjoy the taste. Serve hot with rice, bhaja, dal and your special curry of the day…everyone happy, mummy happy…
Cooking this is so easy, I think many will now want to make this mix at home and enjoy ‘Instant Dhoka Made Easy at Home’.
That’s the fun of cooking. Isn’t it?
© gouri guha 2014