When the mango season arrives in India, each state has its own cookbook of recipes to honour the king of fruits. West Bengal has its own share of unique mango recipes that are a world apart from what you normally know mango recipes to be.
While mangoes arrive fairly late in Bengal, the raw mango is the saviour. From pickles to fish curry, the range of raw mangoes in a Bengali household is unmatched. Sour, spicy and sweet, Bengalis can transform this wonder fruit according to their taste. They are extremely fond of mangoes and won’t leave any opportunity to give a twist to the fruit and create unique, exotic dishes. We look at seven such dishes that define summer in a Bengali household.
Unique mango recipes to take a walk through a Bengali summer
Aam pora shorbot
This translates to smoked mango juice. And yes, it is exactly like it sounds. The raw mangoes are burnt and roasted on fire for a smoky flavour. Give the mango peels a good char before peeling them off. This unique mango recipe is on the same page as an aam panna, but the recipe is vastly different. Add some bhaja moshla to it for some flavour and punch and drive all your summer woes away.
Aam er tok dal
Raw mango dal is a common delicacy in a Bengali household just when the summer kicks in. With a distinct sweet and sour flavour, this dal goes best with hot rice. Usually prepared with masoor dal or red lentils and a five-spice tempering, this unique mango recipe gains momentum during early summers and stays on till monsoons.
Kaancha aam er chutney
Finishing a meal in Bengali household without a sweet dish is almost sacrilegious. Add the sweet and sour mango chutney and a regular lunch just gets a happy transformation. This sugary raw mango chutney is cooked in a tempering of mustard seeds, dried red chillies and lots and lots of sugar. Of course, it is incomplete without the seasoning of the famous Bengali bhaja moshla. The best part about this chutney is that the mango seeds go in it too, dipped in the sugary gravy. Easy and fuss free, this unique mango dish is loved by one and all.
The love affair of Bengalis and sondesh does not need any introduction. This traditional Bengali sweet is made with fresh chenna, sugar and mango puree. This unique mango recipe is all about freshness and a melt-in-the-mouth softness. One of the more complex dishes to make, it is important to get the technicalities right, because you don’t want to end up with a chewy texture.
Just like the rest of the country, Bengalis love their yogurt too. But thanks to their sweet tooth, trust Bengalis to find the sugary version of every dish. That is how they came up with mishti doi. But this aam doi or mango yogurt is their own twist to yogurt in summers. Long before store-bought flavoured yogurts were a thing, this aam doi was a regular in a Bengali household, saved for the most special occassions. Making it is simple, easy and fuss-free and makes for a great summer recipe.
(Featured Image: Courtesy Instagram/manhattancupcakes_08; Hero Image: Courtesy Instagram/_.photographic._.memories_)