I was born and brought up in Bombay. Fortunately, we stayed in a Sindhi Society full of Bengalis J. So, you can imagine the fun associated with a cosmo neighborhood.
My Aai (my mother) was a vegetarian 35 years of her life until she was expecting me. She would get mad cravings to eat Fish, prawns and eggs all the time. For someone who grew in a typical Brahmin household, that was an offense! Initially she hesitated but then surrendered to the cravings eventually.
One of our Bong neighbors, kaku (paternal uncle’s wife in Bengali) as we fondly called her found out my mother’s secret cravings and made Rou mach for her. My mother did not share a single piece of that fried gluttony with my Baba (my father).
Another sweet neighbor Krishna maasima (Krishna aunty-mother’s sister in Bengali) would recreate her grandmother’s Dhaka Dim Curry (egg curry from Dhaka) that my mother relished with extreme joy and happiness, she often confesses fondly.
As hilarious as this incident sounds, seafood and eggs became an integral part of our edible world.
Krishna maasima’s grandmother’s family moved from Dhaka, East Bengal (Bangaladesh now) to West Bengal (in India) at the time of partition in 1947. They moved without a single penny in their pockets! But, they gladly brought their generosity, sense of aesthetics and arts and lovely gastronomic flavors! That’s where the name comes from J! As they say in Bengali, bhalo khao J (eat well).
Ingredients: (for 3-4 persons)
- 6 boiled eggs, de-shelled and cut into halves.
- 2-3 tbsps. Dry coconut powder. (I used dried but you could use fresh)
- 1 cup chopped cilantro.
- 4-5 Curry leaves.
- 5 tbsps. Mustard seeds crushed in mixer (Rai as they call in Bengali)
- 2 tbsps. mustard oil or olive oil.
- 5-6 dried red Chilis soaked overnight, made into a fine paste.
- 3-4 smashed cloves of garlic.
- 2-3 tbsps. Finely chopped ginger.
- 2 tsps. Red chili powder.
- 2-3 tbsps. Garam Masala (All spice) powder.
- 1-2 tsps. Turmeric powder.
- 3-4 Medium sized red onions, sliced finely.
- 2-3 tomatoes finely chopped.
- 1-2 tbsps. Tomato paste.
- 3-4 jalapeno Chilis, Finely sliced.
- 1 tsp. asafetida.
- 1 tsp. carom seed powder (ajwain)
- Salt to taste.
- Lemons to squeeze.
This is a slowly cooked recipe, so you at least need an hour to cook it. I have cooked it in 30 minutes too. But, the slow cooking for hour and half allows the infusion of flavours and thus tastes better.
- Heat the oil in a stockpot and add the garlic, ginger, crushed mustard (rai peesh ke) seeds, onions, green chilis to it. Sauté well, until the onions come together.
- Add the shredded coconut to the sautéed onions. Sauté well.
- Add the red chili paste (substitute with sri racha sauce).
- Sauté this mixture until everything comes together.
- Add the tomatoes next along with garam masala, turmeric powder, carom seed powder and asafetida in it. Sauté well.
- Add tomato paste.
- Add water, cover and allow it to simmer for as long as you can.
- After the gravy cooks completely and gets thick, set aside and cool.
- Blend into a fine paste into the mixer.
- The gravy is ready.
- Add the boiled eggs into the curry and cook together for 2-3 minutes along with curry leaves and salt. Add water if desired.
Serve hot with rice or bread of your choice. It’s a simple and delicately cooked treat that my family enjoys.
A close counterpart of my name in Bengali is “Manoshi” (means the same).
I believe that it’s wise (evidently so) to say that I m a Bengali at heart, Maharashtrian by birth, Gujrati for the flavours , Punjabi by enthusiasm, South Indian for the love of Kanjeewarams, Walkalams, Ikkats and Jaqquards and American for courtesy .J And, that sums up me as an Indian forever. So enjoy this “love of egg” curry that travelled from Dhaka to Bombay and to my humble kitchen in CA!
I grew up amongst Bengalis thought born and brought up in Bombay. My Aai (mother) says she ate fish for the first time when she was expecting me! It would be wise to say that I m a Bengali at heart, Maharashtrian by birth, Gujrati for the flavours , Punjabi by enthusiasm, South Indian for the love of Kanjeewarams, Walkalams, Ikkats and Jaqquards and American for courtesy .J And, that sums up me as an Indian forever.
Have a fun mid-week meal from mine to yours J