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TRADITIONAL CUISINE OF ODISHA

Chhunchi Patra


Chhunchi Patra

About the Recipe

The name 'Chhunchi Patra" is derived from 'chhunchi' (needle) because the pitha is supposed to be very thin comparable to the sharp edge of a needle. However it's better said than done. Prepare this 'pitha' the way you can, and enjoy the taste of this traditional delicacy from Odisha.

Ingredients

2 cups aruwa rice (arua chaula)
1 shredded coconut (nadia kora)
1/2 cup gud/ sugar (guda / chini)
1/2 cup chenna (chhena)
½ tsp crushed black pepper (gol maricha)
Pinhead measure edible camphor (karpura)
Water or milk
A piece of folded muslin cloth( stalks of dhuba patra/durva leaves were used originally)

Method

Filling: Mix shredded coconut, chhena, guda/sugar together. Heat a karei on low. Put the mixture in and stir fry until moisture evaporates. Add crushed black pepper and karpura. Remove from heat, set aside to cool. An alternative choice is to use the raw filling and let the mixture cook inside the crepe on the tawa (My grandmother preferred the aroma of toasted coconut). Sometimes, only coconut and jaggery/guda is used. Nowadays, dried fruits, nuts and khua/khoya with cardamom/ elaichi powder can be used instead of coconut and chhena. Method: Clean, wash and soak rice for 2-3 hrs. Grind to fine paste. Add enough water/milk to make thin batter. Set aside. Keep rice batter and filling ready at hand. Take piece of muslin cloth, washed and dried. Fold into a rectangle. Heat tawa and season with oil/ghia( in the olden days they spread oil/ghee with a nadiya sendhaa). When the tawa starts to smoke lightly, dip muslin cloth into rice batter and brush the hot tawa quickly twice, once from north to south and then from west to east forming a cross/plus shape. Spoon a few drops of ghee around the shape and as the sides start to crisp up, put a spoonful of filling into the middle of the cross. Then fold each side one on top of the other and form a square packet. After gently pressing to seal the folds, take it out and place on a plate. In this manner prepare the rest of the chhunchipatras. Enjoy warm

Contributed by

Suchitra Das



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