Shukto Recipe: Shukto is a traditional Bengali dish that is typically served as a starter or as part of a meal. It is a stew made with a lot of different vegetables, like bitter gourd, eggplant, sweet potato, drumsticks, radish, and pumpkin. To prepare Shukto, the vegetables are first cut into bite-sized pieces and then lightly fried in oil.
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Then, they are cooked in milk, water, and spices like turmeric, cumin, and ginger. Finally, the dish is garnished with fried Bori (lentil dumplings) and served with steamed rice. Shukto is known for its unique flavor, which is a combination of bitter, sweet, and spicy. It is also considered a healthy dish as it is rich in nutrients and low in calories.
here is a Bengali Shukto recipe with bullet points:
- 1 medium-sized bitter gourd (karela), sliced thinly
- 1 medium-sized raw banana (kacha kola), sliced thinly
- 1 medium-sized ridge gourd (jhinge), sliced thinly
- 1 medium-sized eggplant (begun), sliced thinly
- 1-2 potatoes (aloo), peeled and cubed
- 1/2 cup papaya (pepe), sliced thinly
- 1-2 tbsp mustard oil (sarser tel)
- 1/2 tsp turmeric powder (halud)
- 1 tsp cumin powder (jeera guro)
- 1 tsp coriander powder (dhonia guro)
- 1/2 tsp red chili powder (sukno lanka guro)
- Salt to taste
- 1-2 tsp sugar (chini)
- 1 cup water
- For the tempering: 1-2 tbsp ghee, 1 tsp panch phoron (a mixture of five spices)
- Wash all the vegetables thoroughly and cut them into thin slices.
- Heat mustard oil in a kadhai or a deep pan over medium flame.
- Add the sliced bitter gourd and fry until it turns slightly brown. Remove it from the oil and keep it aside.
- In the same oil, add the sliced raw banana and fry for 2-3 minutes until it becomes slightly soft.
- Add the sliced ridge gourd, eggplant, and cubed potatoes and fry for another 3-4 minutes.
- Now, add the sliced papaya, turmeric powder, cumin powder, coriander powder, red chili powder, salt, and sugar. Mix well.
- Add 1 cup of water and bring it to a boil. Lower the heat and cover the pan with a lid. Cook until the vegetables are soft and tender.
- In a separate pan, heat ghee over medium flame. Add panch phoron and fry until it becomes fragrant.
- Add the tempering to the cooked vegetables and mix well.
- Serve the shukto hot with steamed rice.
- If you don’t have access to papaya, you can use green mango or drumstick as a substitute.
- You can also add a few pieces of fried coconut and bori (sun-dried lentil dumplings) to enhance the flavor of the shukto.
- If you want a thicker consistency, you can add a tablespoon of besan (gram flour) or posto (poppy seed paste) to the shukto.