October 27th, 2015 by Abhijit Chakraborty

Food & Kolkata!

Have you ever heard of any two words that sound more harmonious and perfect together than these two?

Kolkata is a unique city where the names of the food items sound as delightful as they taste.

1. Bengali Sweets

Perhaps the most popular product from this place, Bengali sweets are known for their typical milk-based ingredients and relatively mild sweetness. Roshogolla, Sandesh and Kancha Gola are just a few of the many delectable options available. And while Bengali sweets are now as available almost everywhere in the country, no other place makes them like Kolkata.

Sandesh - a traditional Bengali sweet
Sandesh – a traditional Bengali sweet


2. Illish Maach (Hilsa Fish)

I had once read somewhere that “Illish swims thrice: once in water, once in oil and once in mustard.”

And that is so true! Simply fried in oil, cooked with chillies and mustard or even steamed with turmeric paste, red chillies and coconut paste and wrapped in banana leaves – have it anyway you want. You will be unable to stop yourself from asking for a second helping.

(Beware of the bones though, some of them can slip into your throat and be a real pain.)


3. Mishti Doi

Set to artistic perfection in brown, clay cups, the sweetened yoghurt on a warm summer afternoon tastes like ambrosia. Slightly sweet and delicately brown, it tickles everyone’s taste buds with the slight tanginess one moment, oh-so-sweet the next.


4. Chingri’r Malaikari ( Shrimp in Coconut & Mustard Curry)

An all-time favourite with the Bengalis and a very easy dish to make, suffused with coconut cream and mustard seed paste with a hint of green chillies, it is an excellent accompaniment to hot steamed rice. From young to old, there is no Kolkattan who is not in love with this dish.


5. Ghugni

This is a spicy yellow peas or black gram gravy, flavoured with garam masala, cumin, turmeric, red chillies, chopped coriander and seasoning. Some of the braver ones also add a splash of tamarind juice for a more intense tang, while some prefer to squeeze a bit of lemon juice over it. It is usually consumed as a breakfast or evening snack at home. Special preparations include addition of small bits of cooked mutton!


6. Kosha Mangsho (Spicy Mutton/Lamb Curry)

Cooked slowly to perfection with a heavy dash of gorgeously-harmonious medley of rich spices and served with piping hot rice, this dish is a must have for anyone who has not had it yet.



And yes, because you won’t find such food anywhere else, you should probably plan a trip to Kolkata right away. There are a number of fabulous OYOs in the city that will make your stay memorable.

P.s. You might like these related resources:


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