‘Bhapa’ or steaming is an healthier option of cooking fish, vegetables or paneer in Bengali cooking. Amongst all the ‘Bhapa’ recipes ‘Bhapa Chingri’ or ‘Steamed Prawn Curry’ is the famous one. Every Bong kitchen has their own recipe of cooking this dish keeping the ingredients almost same but in varied quantities. One common ingredient for cooking any ‘Bhapa’ dish is mustard and ofcourse mustard oil. The pungent smell of mustard oil makes the dish more tasty.
‘Chingri’ is Bengali’s all time favourites. I already have shared some Prawn and Shrimp recipes and will be posting some more. Traditionally this recipe is prepared in a airtight stainless steel tiffin box using a pressure cooker. All the ingredients are mixed together and placed in a steel container with airtight lid. This container is then placed in the pressure cooker and steamed for 8-10 minutes. But, it can be cooked in microwave too. For microwave cooking cook the mixture in a covered microwave proof container for 5 minutes. I like the gravy a little runny so I use only coconut milk, you can use coconut paste if you like to have thick gravy. Here goes the recipe…
- Wash, clean and devein the shrimps. I like to use shrimps with head on you may use without it too.
- Marinate the shrimps with a little salt, lemon juice and turmeric powder. Keep aside for 10 minutes.
- In the meanwhile make a paste with mustard seeds, poppy seeds and 2 green chilies. Add water if required, the consistency of this mixture should not be too thick.
- Now take a stainless steel tiffin box with a tight lid. In that container take mustard-poppy seed paste, coconut milk, salt, sugar. Mix well.
- Wash the shrimps again under running water so that the sourness of lime goes off.
- Put the shrimps into the container and coat with the masala paste.
- Add some water if required. The gravy should not be very thick or too runny.
- Drizzle 2-3 tsp of mustard oil and a green chilly. Cover the container.
- Put the container in the pressure cooker. Pour water till the half of the container. Close the lid of the pressure cooker. And cook for 10-12 minutes on medium flame.
Remove the box from the pressure cooker after pressure released of its own. ‘Bhapa Chingri’ is ready to serve with steamed rice. Enjoy!!!
~ I like ‘Bhapa Chingri’ with a little thin gravy so I use coconut milk. If you want the gravy to be thick you can use paste of freshly grated coconut too.
~ Soak mustard seeds and poppy seeds in lukewarm water for 15-20 minutes to make a smooth paste.