Loaded with flavour and colour, these Bihari dishes are sure to impress

These Bihari dishes are both tasty and easy to prepare. Photos: plaswanth/stockimagefactory.com/rangeecha/Shutterstock

Bihar is known for its incredible sweet dishes that can make the special occasions extra special. Interestingly, these dishes are easier to prepare too. Here are some tasty Bihari dishes that has conquered the heart of India.

Dahi Choora
You could make this dish without even lighting the stove. Here is the recipe.

Only four ingredients are required to make the simple Dahi Chura. Photo: Plaswanth/Shutterstock

1 ½ cups white flattened rice
1 ½ cup yoghurt
½ cup jaggery powder
½ tsp cardamom powder

Wash the flattened rice and soak for 5 – 10 minutes
Mix jaggery powder in yoghurt
Stir well until the jaggery is melted completely
Now add the soaked flattened rice
Sprinkle cardamom powder
Garnish with banana slices, almonds or dried fruits.

Litti chokha
This dish plays a major role in the rich culinary tradition of Bihar.

For litti
1 ½ cups wheat flour
1/3 cup coarsely ground wheat
1 tbsp oil
Salt as required
For the filling
½ cup sathu (a flour of roasted seeds and pulses)
1 inch piece of ginger
2 -3 garlic cloves
2 -3 green chilies
2 tbsp coriander leaves
1 medium sized onion
1 tbsp mustard oil
1 tbsp pickle masala (Toasted and powdered mix of fennel, mustard seeds, cumin, fenugreek, coriander seeds, asafoetida, black cumin, salt, turmeric powder and chili powder)
For the chokha
1 big egg plant
2 -3 small potatoes
4 medium sized tomatoes
1 onion
2 -3 garlic cloves
2 green chilies
1 inch piece of ginger

To make the litti, mix the wheat flour with salt, some baking soda and water as required into soft dough
Add oil and mix well
Keep the dough aside to be used later
Meanwhile, mix the sathu with finely chopped onion, ginger, garlic, green chilies, salt, pickle masala, coriander leaves and mustard oil
Make small balls from the litti dough
Roll these and place the filling in the centre
Roll into balls again with the filling inside
Now cook these on pan (Usually, they are cooked on traditional stoves that are lighted with cow dung cakes)
To make the chokha, roast the egg plant, tomato and potatoes with skin
Score the egg plant and insert a few garlic cloves while roasting to add more flavour
Remove the skin and mash the roasted ingredients
Into this add finely chopped coriander leaves, garlic and green chilies
Add salt and 1 ½ tbsp mustard oil too
Mix well
Dip the cooked litti in fresh ghee and enjoy with flavoursome chokha.

Kheer Makhana
It is an unavoidable dessert that is cooked during most North Indian festivals. Lotus seeds that are easily available in the market are the main ingredient in this dish. Moreover, lotus seeds are known for their incredible nutritional quality too. Check out the recipe of kheer makhana.

2 cups lotus seeds
2 cups milk
¼ cup sugar
Cardamom pods

Kheer Makhna is an important dessert made during special occasions. Photo: StockImageFactory.com/Shutterstock

Lightly toast the lotus seeds
Grind half cup toasted lotus seeds, 5 cashews, cardamom and saffron in a mixer jar
Heat ghee in a pan
Fry the cashews and raisins; keep them aside
Boil the milk and add the toasted lotus seeds into it
Cook for 5 minutes
Now add the powdered mix
Into it add ¼ cup sugar, fried cashews and raisins
Sprinkle some saffron too
Tasty kheer makhana is ready.

Parval ki mittayi
Parval or pointed gourd is a vegetable that is easily available in the stores. It could be used to make stir fries, curries and desserts too. Here is the recipe.

This dessert has a vegetable named Parwal as its base. Photo: StockImageFactory.com/Shutterstock

250 gms pointed gourd
1 ½ cups sugar
10 pistachios
10 almonds
½ tsp cardamom powder
2 tsp milk
2 tbsp milk powder
1 cup khoa or dried milk product
Baking soda

Wash and peel the pointed gourd
You could cut these either before or after cooking
However, to make this dish, cut the vegetable before cooking
Score the pointed gourd and scoop out the seeds
Drop the scored vegetable in boiling water
Add some baking soda too
It would retain the vegetable’s natural colour
Cook these for 3 – 4 minutes
Strain and allow to cool down
Now the pointed gourd would have vibrant green colour
Boil sugar and water in a pan
Into it add the cooked pointed gourds
Cook for at least 12 minutes
Cook until the vegetable absorbs the sugar syrup
To make the filling, toast the khoa until it turns light brown in colour
Turn off the flame before adding milk powder, finely chopped nuts, pistachios, cardamom powder and saffron
Mix well
Add half cup powdered sugar before it cools down
Fill the cooked pointed gourds with this mixture
Tasty and sweet parval ki mittayi is ready.

Crunchy Chandrakala is a sweet that is cooked in Bihar mostly during Diwali. Here is how to make it at home.

Chandrakala is a dessert that's stuffed with dry fruits. Photo: Rangeecha/Shutterstock

100 gms khoa
2 tbsp ghee
2 tbsp semolina
1 ½ tbsp sugar
1 tbsp chopped coconut
1 tbsp chopped cashews
1 tbsp chopped almonds
1 tbsp chopped raisins
For the sugar syrup
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
2 cardamom pods
200 gms all purpose flour
5 -6 tbsp ghee

Heat ghee in a pan
Roast the semolina on low flame until it turns golden brown
Into it add khoa
Mix well until the khoa melts and turns golden in colour
Now add sugar, coconut pieces, cashews, almonds and raisins
Mix well and turn off flame
Meanwhile, make the sugar syrup by boiling sugar, water and cardamom
Add saffron too
Take the syrup off the flame when it reaches one string consistency
Mix ghee into all purpose flour
Add water slowly and mix into soft dough
Make small balls from it and roll into small circular sheets
Two dough sheets are required to make a single piece of Chandrakala
Place the semolina – khoa mix in the centre of one sheet
Spread water on the edges
Place another dough sheet on top
Gently press on the edges to secure it; do not press on the centre
You could fold the centre in any design or shape
Heat ghee or refined oil in a pan
Fry the Chandrakala in hot ghee/oil until they turn golden in colour
Drop the fried Chandrakala in the sugar syrup
Soak them in the syrup for 5 – 7 minutes
However, do not soak for longer as it would lose its crunchiness.


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