September 18, 2011

Kanchkolar shukto (Plantain cooked with milk)

Shukto is the Bengali way of simmering vegetables with hint of sugar and milk. Though mostly eaten in summer, and with a medley of vegetables including something bitter, Bengalis love shukto anytime of the year. I hear stories when grandmothers or great grandmothers would safeguard their shukto recipe as the most secret thing. And the parameter of how good a cook one is was based on how good the person could cook shukto. So you know now, what an important place shukto holds in Bengali cuisine. This kanchkola or plantain shukto recipe is one of my favorite dishes made of plantain. I love the excellent blend of sweetish milk and ginger with the crunchy meaty plantain pieces. And the subtle hint of ghee makes it all the more delicious.

You can print the recipe for your kitchen here: PRINTABLE RECIPE
(Serves 2)
2 big plantains
1cup milk
1tbsp ginger paste
1/2sp cumin seeds
1/2sp cumin powder


1. Peel the plantain and cut it into thin semi-circle slices. While cutting, soak the plantain in salt water. Wash well to remove excess salt before using.
2. Heat ghee in a wok. Add cumin seeds and let it crackle.
3. Add ginger paste and quickly stir for a half a minute on medium heat.
4. Add the plantain pieces. Stir it quickly for a minute or so.
5. Add cumin powder, salt to taste.
6. Add 1 and ½ cup water. And simmer covered on low heat until plantains are half done.
7. Add the milk and sugar. Simmer until done.

While cutting plantain it is necessary to soak it in salt water. This prevents blackening of the plantains.
Plantain does not taste so good if it is fried for too long for this particular recipe.

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