But what drains you most is the aftermath.
Setting the house and the kitchen back to normal, replenishing the fridge and the pantry, buy green groceries, wash and dry them, then load the fridge .... it is a never ending job.
And to top all this is the unpacking part and worse, the laundry.
I hardly got the time to rest even for a while ... the whole days and evenings were spent on all this as well as thinking of whatever light food I can rustle up for the man ... Kolkata street food had played its role well. So I had to cook soft boiled rice and all kinds of boiled vegetables, mash them up and tried my best to make them look edible.
Mind you ... boiled veggies are our favourite ... all those makhas .... potatoes, brinjals, okras, sweet potatoes, ridge gourd .... all boiled and mashed up with a littler salt and either ghee or mustard oil and sometimes a good dose of lemon juice .... pure bliss on a plate.
But the real task lies in making it look good.
Anyway .... to cut a long story short ... that is what I have been doing all through this week. And also cooking for myself. Makha and all is all very good ... but I needed normal food too. Read fish.
Even though I was in Kolkata, I hardly got to eat much fish.
Just prawns one day and some other fish another day. That's all.
I needed simple, home cooked maacher jhol badly.
So among all the above mentioned chores and more, I gave my fish wala a call one evening. Asked him if he had Tyangra and prawns. Rohu and Katla he will have anyway. He said yes and we left for his shop immediately ... he sets up his stall at a place that is at least 20 kms or more from our place.
Had asked him to keep aside some Tyangra and prawns for me.
It is another thing that he had some very good Mourala too. I got half a kilo of big sized Rohu too.
So, my freezer is packed to the gills right now.
I had made this jhaal in a slightly confused mode. Just threw in a little of this and that ... had no idea where I was going. Opened the freezer and saw some frozen mustard paste ... added that too.
And a handful of my home made boris ( you must have seen the photos on my blog page on FB ).
Also ... I have this thing about Amchur ... or dried mango pieces.
If I am making anything with mustard paste, I tend to add some. Absolutely love that taste.
My Thamma used to do that ... so maybe I got it from her.
Turned out pretty good. Good enough to make a post on it.
B wanted to cook dinner tonight. And I got this much needed time.
The big lot of books that I have got from the Book Fair have been tempting me.
But right now I am ignoring them well and good.
Not for long, I know, though.
So while B is rustling up some Aloo baingan and rotis, I am ensconced in my favourite sofa, typing away.
I have made some Dahi vadas in the afternoon. So looking forward to dinner time as the smell of hot rotis waft through the house right now.
But the recipe first.
Fresh Tyangra fish - 6 pieces, cleaned and marinated with salt + turmeric powder
Potatoes - 1 medium sized, sliced lengthwise
Brinjal - 1 medium sized, sliced lengthwise
Mustard paste - 2 tbsp
Amchur pieces - 2, or depending on how tart you like your food
Bori - 6 pieces, lightly fried in mustard oil
Kalo jeere / Nigella seeds - a pinch
Haldi / Turmeric powder
Dry red chillies - 2, broken
Oil to cook - I use mustard oil
Salt - to taste
Sugar - a pinch
How to :
Heat mustard oil in a heavy kadahi.
Lightly fry the fish and keep aside.
If needed add some more oil. Add the nigella seeds and the chillies.
Add the potatoes and fry on high heat for a while.
Now add the brinjals and turmeric powder. Fry well.
Add salt and a little water.
Cover and cook till the vegetables are done.
Remove cover and add some more water. Check for salt.
Add the mustard paste, the bories, the amchur pieces and the fish.
Add the sugar.
Pour around a tbsp of mustard oil all over.
Cover and bring to a boil.
Simmer for a while.
Remove from heat and let it stand for around five minutes.
Sprinkle some fresh coriander leaves and serve hot with plain rice.
The tauk, jhaal combined with the pungent mustard paste is to die for. If you are a Bengali, you will know what I mean. :-)
One another note, I have been busy with some more handiworks.
I made this skirt yesterday.
You will find the details here, on my other blog.
C'ya around folks!