Traditional Patishapta is made with a rice flour batter
and fresh coconuts and jaggery .... all harvested products.
But due to the fast paced life of recent times, it is no longer possible to actually go
through the whole process of cleaning, washing, soaking and grinding rice to make a fresh powder.
And then use that powder to make a batter.
So, many people make it with a batter of maida and sooji ,
a quicker version of the original, traditional way.
I usually do not make this frequently ... my favourite pithe is the Poda pithe.
But come winter, every Bengali has to taste the Patishapta once.
When made or had with fresh date palm jaggery, the Patishapta
evokes wonderful memories of childhood
in every Bengali.
With visions of our grandmothers making it on a chulha on cold winter evenings
and us children sitting around it,
savouring the soft, hot patishapta with jaggery oozing out of it,in the warmth of the hot unoon,
knocking on our hearts,
we try to recreate the same taste and memories in our own kitchens
with inept hands.
all over Bong blogosphere ...
but for a reader who requested me for the recipe.
So went ahead and made it.
Thanks to esskay we did get to enjoy the patishapta this winter.
I made it the traditional way ... but added some lentils (urid dal) to
the batter to give the crepes a little softness ...
I have noticed that the only rice batter
tends to make the crepes
I have also added a very,very, very small pinch of salt
to the batter ...
to complement the sweet filling.
One tip I'd like to share ...
the first and second crepes will turn out slightly thicker and not very perfect.
But as you keep making them, they will turn out better and better.
And keep the batter thin ... helps in spreading.
And also brings out crisp sides.
Do use a well seasoned, cast iron tawa.
If you want to use a non stick tawa, make sure you add just a few drops of oil and smear it well all over.
Use a wet cloth to smear the oil.
And heat the tawa well ... but on a low flame.
Patience is the key here.
Also, I never try to make it at one go ... or in one day.
A little preparation done earlier helps hugely here.
For example ... I make the coconut filling on one day and store it in the fridge.
I soak the rice and dal overnight ( do not keep it in the fridge ).
And grind it on the next day.
Then keep it in the fridge till I need it ... that way it soaks well.
And all I need to do is heat the tawa and make the pithes whenever I want to.
For the pur / filling
Freshly grated coconut - 1 cup
Jaggery (I used granules) - around 1 cup
Elaichi / Green cardamom powder - 1 tsp
Water - ½ cup
For the Crepes
Rice - 1 and ½ cup
Urid dal - a little less than ¼ cup
Enough water to make a thin batter
How to make :
The Pur / filling
In a deep pan, put the water and the jaggery together and let it come to a boil.
When the jaggery melts completely, remove and strain it to remove any impurities.
Put it back into the pan and add the coconut.
Add the elaichi powder and keep stirring till the mixture turns dryish.
Grind into a smooth batter, adding water if needed.
Add water to make a very thin,
free flowing batter.
( If you let the batter sit for a day, the crepes turn out even better. )
If using a cast iron tawa, heat it well first.
Then smear a good amount of oil on it and heat it again.
Now wipe off the oil with a wet cloth.
Add a little oil again and smear it well and then wipe it off again, with a wet cloth.
Now pour a ladleful of batter on the tawa and spread it to make a thin round.
I cannot do it with the ladle ...
so pick up and turn the tawa in a circle ...
works for me. :-)
Let it cook for a while.
It should leave the bottom of the tawa easily when done.
Place some of the filling in the middle of the crepe.
But the rice flour ones stay soft enough
to be easily cut with a spoon.
Make sure to smear the tawa with a little oil and heat it well before adding another spoonful of batter.
poured over them.
Or sweet, thickened milk.
I'm not so lucky .... so enjoyed them as is.
Some wonderful varities of the Patishapta on blogosphere
Sandeepa's Patishapta ...
using Maida, Khoya & Semolina ...
and a beautiful write ...
miss ya Bong mom ... come back soon.
Jaya's Patishapta ...
she has 3 different ways of making the batter and a huge info on the sweet.
Sayantani's Patishapta ...
using maida, semolina & khoya too ...
and has a wonderful writeup on Poush Parbon.