This niramish Kachkolar kopta reminds me of my grand mother. Niramish in Bengali means strictly Vegetarian even without onion / garlic. So in bengal, somebody is having niramish means no meat, fish, egg, onion garlic and even red lentil. Even without all these, my grand ma used to cook heavenly dishes and this kopta is one of them. Humble green banana is being boiled and then mixed with other ingredients to make kopta or Kofta if I may say, and finally there is this absolutely delicious gravy in which it gets dunked for very limited period.
Let me share the recipe the way it was being made at my house.
Ingredients for Niramish Kachkolar Kopta
- Raw Banana – 5
- Green peas – 2 tbsp
- Poppy seed paste – 1 tbsp
- Fenugreek seeds or methi – 1/2 tsp
- Bayleaf -2
- Whole garam masala – cinnamon, cloves, green cardamom
- Ginger paste – 2 tsp
- Curd – 1 tbsp
- Salt, turmeric, Sugar, Cumin powder, Red chili powder, green chili – as required
- White oil
- Raisin, Cashew – 2 tbsp
- Cream – 1 tbsp
Method to cook Niramish Kachkolar Kopta
I have taken 5 green / raw banana for this recipe. When buying raw banana, I made sure that the skin /peels are clean and healthy because after cooking the actual dish with raw banana flesh, I use the peels to make another delicacy known as kachkolar khosa bata or banana skin bharta.
Cut the banana into 2 – 3 pieces and pressure cook with a pinch of salt and turmeric.
When it is cooled a bit, peel it and mash so that there is no lump. Keep the peels separately for later use. I have also taken some boiled peas and corn for the mixture. I have also soaked the poppy seed in water atleast for 30 minutes.
For the masala, I have soaked the curd, ginger paste, cumin powder, turmeric , red chili powder and a pinch of salt in 2 tbsp of water. I feel that if you soak the masala powder beforehand, it gives you much more flavor.
In a grinder, fist I have ground the poppy seed with 2 green chili. Then , I have added the boiled green peas and corn and gave it few more pulses to make a smooth paste.
Next, I have added the ground mixture along with salt, turmeric and cumin powder to the mashed banana. Knead it thoroughly to make a homogeneous mix. Then I have taken a small ball from the mixture, roll it under my palms and then put one raisin and broken cashew at the centre. Again make a ball. I prefer not to use any other binder for the kopta, they remain very soft which we like.
In a pan, heat white oil and then fry the kopta , few at a time till golden brown. Be careful not to break the kopta during frying.
Once you have fried all the koptas, add some more oil in the same pan and add methi once the oil is hot. Methi will turn black, and at this point you need to add a spoonful of ghee.
Add the bay leaf and whole garam masala to the oil ghee mixture.
Now add the masala water that you have prepared and kept ready beforehand. Fry well over medium to low heat so that the masala is fried well without burning and oil starts coming out of the masala.
Add the remaining raisin and then stir.
My koptas are ready to be dunked into the gravy.
When the masala is sizzling, add a cup of hot water and cook when it starts boiling.
Release the koptas carefully into the gravy and remove from heat. Since the koptas are very delicate don’t heat them in the gravy or else it will break.
Adjust the seasoning. Add the cream and keep covered.
Serve with Bengali Misti Pulao.