This Panch Meshali Sobjir Bhorta you can make with whatever vegetable you have got in your refrigerator! It is full of flavours and delicious addition to our lockdown meal collection.
Bhorta/ Bhurta or Bharta
Bhorta, Bhurta or Bharta means mashed! It is a side dish can be prepared by using boiled, grilled, steamed, charred, roasted vegetables, fish or meat.
Bhorta is a common dish in South -Asian cuisine! In Bengali cuisine, it called Bhorta and in North India, it is known as Bharta. Vegetable, lentils, Fish, Meat, there are different kinds of Bhorta recipes in Bengali cuisine.
Three fundamental ingredients required to make Bhorta or Bharta., those are Mustard oil, Onion, Dry red chillies or green chillies. Every other ingredient falls into second place.
These days we all are trying to do our daily activities, chores differently. When many things in our lives have changed, something remains the same. Such as, till now, I can follow my themes for my weekly meal plans—vegetarian meals for Mondays. I made Chirer Polao for Breakfast.
For lunch, I made Panchmeshali Sobjir Bhorta along with Arhar Dal and Rice, for lunch! A simple yet delicious lunch during this lockdown period.
Weekly Meal Themes
What to cook for lunch or dinner? It was a big challenge for me even two years back. Then, I came up with a weekly meal plan theme or routine, which is perfectly matching with my life. I need to stick to this theme more than before during this lockdown period to avoid frequent grocery shopping. Here is my weekly meal- plan theme, you can download it here, if you think this plan will help you with your weekly meal plan.
The journey of this recipe!
There is one more routine didn’t change in my life and, that is talking over the phone with my mom.
Okay, so here is the truth!
Dusting furniture, folding clothes, chopping vegetables for weekly meals, I find all these works mechanical and mundane. But, all these are vital work to run a functional home. I always try to finish all these works while I talk to my Maa over a phone call and this is the time I get all the news about our family members, neighbours, friends who live in India. Such a phone call conversation delivered me this Panchmeshali Sobjir Bhorta recipe.
One of my Masi( Aunt) settled in Assam, the north-east state of India. Because of lockdown, they were running out of vegetables. She had a bit of piece of vegetables in her refrigerator and, they had to wait for a couple of days to go to the vegetable shopping.
Somewhere she got this recipe inspiration, and it turned out as a delicious side dish to enjoy with steamed rice or Roti.
She shared her experience with my Maa, and she tried this recipe, and then I made it in our kitchen. For this recipe, I used a small piece of pumpkin, snow peas, tomato, carrot, eggplant. This recipe is very flexible, and you can use whatever vegetables you have into the refrigerator and adjust the number of chillies according to that.
Enjoy this fibre rich, flavourful recipe and you can add this in your Bengali Bhorta recipe collection.
Panch Meshali Sobjir Bhorta
- ½ Eggplant
- 1 medium-size Tomato
- 10 Snowpeas
- ½ cup Carrot
- 30 gm Pumpkin
- 1 Onion - finely chopped
- 4 Green chilli - chopped
- 1 Dry red chilli
- ½ tsp Onion seed
- 2 Garlic - big cloves and finely chopped
- ½ tbsp Coriander powder
- ½ tsp Turmeric powder
- 3 tsp Mustard oil
- Wash and cut the eggplant, pumpkin, carrot into big chunks. This will help to cook all the vegetables in the same amount of time.
- Wash and cut snow peas, tomato into half and put all the vegetables in a pressure cooker with ¼ cup of water, put the lid on and wait for one whistle. Let the pressure release by itself.
- If you don’t want to use a pressure cooker, you can boil the veggies in a saucepan, add enough water to boil the veggies.
- Once cooled, smash with your hand or you can use potato smasher.
- Heat 2 tsp of mustard oil in a heavy-duty cooking pan over medium heat. Wait till the oil reaches to the smoky point. Reduce the heat to low and add dry red chilli, onion seeds and chopped garlic.
- Add chopped onion, fry till translucent, sprinkle turmeric powder, coriander powder, add green chillies and mashed vegetable mixture.
- Mix everything well, and over medium heat keep stirring the mixture till everything mix well.
- Turn off the heat, pour remaining mustard oil and cover with a lid.
- Give a few minutes resting time and serve with steamed rice or Roti.