Bengali Vegetarian Dishes That You Must Try Once In Your Life


Bengalis are foodies who can never fail to appreciate good food. Whether it is a non-vegetarian (aamish) dish or vegetarian (niramish) platter, we the Bengalis love food right from the core of our heart. Today’s post is about the Bengali vegetarian delicacies that have been able to make a mark for their distinctive taste and aroma. At the outset, however, let me tell you that Bengalis can be quite rigid when it comes to the distinction of aamish and niramish. In fact, onion and garlic too are treated as aamish. Hence, in this post, I have tried to highlight a few best-known Bengali vegetarian dishes (that knows no use of onion and garlic) that you must try once in your life.




Shukto-image source

Shukto is an exceptional dish which happens to be a staple item in every Bengali household. Even in Marriages, the Holy Thread Ceremony (Poitey) or the rice ceremony (Annoprashan), the bitter-sweet Shukto surely finds a place in the lunch menu. This delicious Bengali version of mixed vegetable curry is an assortment of a variety of vegetables like bitter gourd, raw banana, eggplant, sweet potato, potato, white radish, drumsticks (danta), Hyacinth beans cooked with mustard seeds, poppy seeds, panchforon (a mixture of 5 Bengali spices), ginger paste, Radhuni foron, ghee, sugar, salt, milk and Bori. But in this hotchpotch of veggies, it is to be remembered that onion and garlic haven’t been able to carve a niche. Bengalis love to start their lunch with Shukto served with fine white rice!




Chholar dal-image source

Chholar dal preparation is specific to the Bengali love for lentils. This authentic Bengali recipe is a hot favourite when accompanied with luchi or kochuri. Cholar dal or Bengal Gram, when cooked with coconut chunks, ginger paste, chilli powder, turmeric powder, sugar, salt, coriander powder, mustard oil and ghee, make a delicacy. No onions and no garlic and yet, you hardly miss them! Surely, you need to try it out!




Dhokar Dalna-image source

A masterpiece of Bengali kitchen that it is, Dhokar Dalna is something you must taste at least once in your lifetime. When spiced lentil cakes (popularly known as dhoka among the Bengali community) are deep fried and then allowed to simmer in a gravy concocted from tomatoes, ginger, coriander and cumin and cooked with diced potatoes, we get this delightfully fragrant vegetarian curry, sans onion and garlic.




Chhanar Dalna-image source

This popular Bengali dish is prepared with freshly made chhana or cottage cheese. You can easily prepare the chhana by adding lemon juice to full cream milk. Then cook the chhana balls with tomatoes, ginger paste and potatoes, flavoured with cumin seeds and bay leaves. Add turmeric powder, red chilli powder, sugar, salt and ghee to the gravy and cook to get this authentic Bengali side dish called Chhanar Dalna that is very tasty and well-loved.


Bengalis are associated with fish (Maacher jhol to be more specific) and that somehow lends an idea to many a community that Bengalis know nothing of vegetarian cooking. That is why, this post is really special. Do try out these delicacies from a Bengali ranna ghor and you would love them!

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5 Responses

  1. Kinkinee Kinkinee says:

    A food post after such a long time

  2. sushmita says:

    eeeee I love everything here.. The most Shuktooooo

  1. February 24, 2016

    […] Bengali cuisine boasts of some of the best-known and tastiest vegetarian dishes. Of course, shukto, chholar dal, chhanar dalna and dhokar dalna are some of these delicious ‘NIRAMISH’ dishes; […]

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