Street foods play a major role in the food culture of Bengal. It is versatile, extensive and tugs at your heartstrings. Roll, chop, ghugni and more – a food trail in Bengal remains incomplete without devouring these spicy delights. The exquisite taste of these street foods is undeniable, but the unabashed winner will always be puchka. Ask any Bengali to define puchka, the only answer you will get is ‘love’. A regional cousin to panipuri and gol gappa, puchka is lighter, crunchier and includes a spicy aloo mix. If you have tried puchka, then you surely know what we are talking about!
Recently, Bengali puchka made its way into the ongoing season of Masterchef Australia that is being streamed at Disney+ Hotstar Premium. The medley of flavours in puchka impressed the judges to the core. How, you ask? One of the top contestants of the season, Kishwar Chowdhury (who has her roots in Bangladesh), recently prepared a Bengali street food platter, but with a twist. The potato was her main ingredient for the test, which she utilised to prepare puchka, samosa and chotpoti (potato-chickpea mix).
She took to Instagram to share an image of the street food platter and wrote alongside, “In today’s Invention Test I made a Bengali Street food platter. I reinvented how we utilize the “ordinary” potato by using it to emulate different pastries.” She also explained how she twisted the original recipes to make them unique and global. Take a look at the complete post:
In another post, she penned a heartfelt note on her love for Bengali street foods and how these dishes take her back to childhood. “Bengali street food, whether it be in Kolkata or Dhaka, is one of the things that pulls me back to my parent’s homeland every year…I miss Dhaka…I miss Kolkata…I can’t wait to resume my street food adventures again,” she wrote. Here’s the post:
Kishwar has been making quite a buzz with her recipe choices for the competition. With a wish to take her regional food to the global platform, Kishwar has earlier impressed the judges with kosha mangsho-ruti (Bengali chicken curry with roti), chingri bhorta (spicy mashed shrimp), mach bhaja (fish fry) and of course, the classic macher jhol.
If all the discussions about Bengali food have left you craving, we suggest whipping a delicious Bengali meal at home with our curated Bengali recipes. Click here to know the recipes.
About Somdatta SahaExplorer- this is what Somdatta likes to call herself. Be it in terms of food, people or places, all she craves for is to know the unknown. A simple aglio olio pasta or daal-chawal and a good movie can make her day.