Bengali Vegetable Chop


Vegetable chop – a mouth-watering street food of Kolkata. It is similar to what the world knows as croquettes, but is loaded with winter vegetables and the Bengali staple potatoes. I loved them when I first tasted them on the streets of Kolkata. Hot veg chops washed down with a cup of hot tea served in kulhad (small earthen pot) on a cold winter evening takes you to a different world.

They are different from the vegetable cutlets which are more famous in rest of India. And what makes them different and absolutely delicious is the addition of beetroots, peanuts and coconut. Beetroots, carrots, potatoes, peas cooked with a handful of spices, crumbed and deep fried – divine!

They are great as snacks and a great meat-free party appetiser. You may crumb and freeze them beforehand, and fry them when the guests arrive. Serve them with mint chutney and date tamarind chutney. Skip your regular croquettes or cutlets next time and try the Bengali vegetable chops. I am sure you will love it as much as we do!

 

 

Ingredients:

Beetroot – 2, grated
Carrot – 2, grated
Potato – 2, grated
Peas – ¼ cup
Ginger – ½ inch, grated
Green chilli – 3-4 or as per taste
Peanuts – a handful
Coconut slices – a handful, cut into small pieces
Oil – 1 tsp + oil for deep frying
Cumin seeds – 1 tbsp
Dry red chilli – 2-3
Garam masala – 1 tsp
Roasted bengal gram – 2 tbsp, ground into fine powder
Salt to taste
Plain flour – ¼ cup
Cornflour – 2 tbsp
Breadcrumbs – 1 cup or as needed
Mint chutney to serve (click here for recipe)
Date tamarind chutney to serve (click here for recipe)

Method:

  1. Dry roast cumin seeds and dry red chilli until aromatic. Grind into a fine powder and set aside
  2. Heat oil in a fry pan or kadhai. Fry the coconut pieces until golden brown and set aside
  3. Next fry the peanuts until they are crunchy and set aside
  4. In the same pan, add ginger and saute for a few seconds. Add grated beetroot, carrot, potatoes, peas and green chillies
  5. Add salt and mix well. Cover and cook until the vegetables are almost done
  6. Add coconut, peanut, cumin-red chilii powder, garam masala, roasted bengal gram powder and mix well
  7. Simmer for 2-3 minutes and turn off the flame
  8. Lightly grease your hands, take a small portion and shape it into an oval while the mixture is still warm but cool enough to handle. Repeat with rest of the mixture
  9. In a wide bowl, mix plain flour and corn flour with some water and make a smooth, lump-free batter. The batter should be thick enough to coat the back of a spoon
  10. Place the breadcrumbs in another wide bowl
  11. Now dip the chop into the flour mix and then coat in completely with breadcrumbs
  12. Place them on a lined tray and refrigerate for 30 minutes
  13. Heat oil in a deep fry pan or kadhai. Fry the chops on medium flame until golden brown
  14. Serve hot

 

Grate carrots, beetroot and potatoes

Grate carrots, beetroot and potatoes

 

Cook them with spices and peas

Cook them with spices, chilli, peas, and let it cool

 

Shape the mixture into ovals while it is still warm

Shape the mixture into ovals while it is still warm

 

Dip into plain flour-corn flour batter

Dip into plain flour-corn flour batter

 

Coat it in breadcrumbs

Coat it in breadcrumbs

 

Place the chops in refrigerator for 30 minutes

Place the chops in refrigerator for 30 minutes

 

Deep fry until golden brown

Deep fry until golden brown

 

Vegetable chops served with mint chutney and tamarind chutney

 

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