This recipe is a hot favourite of Bengalis. My personal belief about the origin of this recipe is that in earlier times there used to be a joint family system in most of the households. Bengalis have always been fond of food and the variety of food on their platter would require lots of fresh vegetables. The peels of the vegetables must have been quite a lot in quantity. Instead of wasting and throwing away the peels they came up with the concept of chorchori. All the members including the helpers and the servants would have gotten to eat a good share. Not to forget the widows who, in those days were not allowed to have the non-vegetarian fare. This tasty dish would have satiated their taste buds. Interestingly, the word Chorchori comes from the noise made by the sizzle of the vegetables and their peels inside the wok. In course of time, chorchori has occupied a very loved and adored place in Bengali meals.
This preparation doesn’t have any fixed set of veggies. The best thing is, you can use whatever you want to and how much ever you want to. I have mentioned whatever I have used in this recipe but you can let your imagination run wild.
All the veggies should be cut into thick long strips
- 1 peeled and cut potato
- 1 long brinjal cut
- 5 each of any types of beans
- 1 carrot
- 5 pointed gourd (potol) optional
- 250gms of pumpkin peeled and cut
- A small cabbage cut
- 1 bundle of fresh spinach leaves and stems
- 1 tsp each of turmeric powder, cumin powder and mustard powder
- Salt and sugar to taste
- 2 tbsps of hot smoked mustard oil
- 1 tsp of panch phoran(bengali five spice)
- 1 whole dry red chilli (can use as per your requirement)
- Wash and cut all the veggies into same shape and size.
- Separate spinach stalks from the leaves and cut it into same size.
- Peel potol(pointed gourd) with a peeler leaving skin and removing skin in alternate bands.
- Gather the peels from all the veggies and cut into thin strips.
- Take oil in a deep wok and smoke it. Once smoked, turn off the gas, take one tsp of oil and keep aside. Now, add panch phoran and dry red chilli.
- Turn on the gas and add potol. Fry for a while and take it out. Now, add potato, pumpkin, beans, brinjal, carrot and saute.
- Add all the spices snd salt and fry. People who like it sweet can add sugar at this stage. (We have added lots of pumpkin which will render its natural sweetness anyway)
- Now, add the cabbage,spinach stalks and fried potol. Reserve the leaves and a few stalks for later.
- Cover and cook on medium heat till the potatoes are cooked.
- Do not add water because the veggies will release quite a lot of water.
- Once the potatoes are done, put the flame on high and add the remaining leaves and stalks.
- Keep frying on high till you get the typical chorchori noise from the wok.
- Add the smoked mustard oil which will add a shine to the veggies.
- Serve with rice but for me, a bowl of chorchori can be had on its own without any carbs.