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Shorshe Begun Kankra

Today is the last day of Durga Puja. Sumi and I stayed home whole day. So to spend her holiday she cooked. That woman surprises me with her patience and cooking. She cooked fish, chicken and crab. Now I don’t like crabs much but Sumi swears by them. I was surprised with the result though. It was a very traditional Bengali way of preparation and was delicious. I never realized crabs would taste so good to me. Hope you all enjoy it too.

Shorshe Begun Kankra - Sea Crab with eggplant in mustard sauce
Shorshe Begun Kankra - Sea Crab with eggplant in mustard sauce

Ingredients

For Marination

  • Sea crabs (medium sized) - 500gm
  • Ginger Garlic paste - 1 tbsp
  • Green Chilli paste - 1 tsp
  • Turmeric powder - 1 tsp
  • Red Chilli powder - 1 tsp
  • Onion paste - 1 tsp
  • Mustard Oil - 1 tbsp
  • Salt - 12 tsp

For the Mustard Paste

  • Big Black Mustard seeds - 2 tbsp
  • Hot Green Chilli - 1
  • Clove of Garlic - 1
  • Ginger - 1cm sized
  • Water - 100ml

For the Main Preparation

  • Small Eggplant - 1
  • Onion (large sized) - 1
  • Tomato (medium sized) - 1
  • Green Chillies - 4
  • Ginger Garlic paste - 1 tsp
  • Turmeric powder - 12 tsp
  • Red Chilli powder - 12 tsp
  • Nigella seeds - 12 tsp
  • Fresh Coriander chopped - 1 tbsp
  • Chicken stock - 100ml (can be substituted with water or vegetable stock)
  • Mustard oil - As required
  • Salt - To taste

Method

Marination

Clean the crabs and chop into 2 pieces. Add all the marination ingredients. Mix well and set it aside in the refrigerator for 30 mins to 1 hour.

Mustard Paste

Grind all the ingredients (from the mustard paste section) in a mixer to make a paste. Add 100 ml of water. Stir and set aside.

Main Preparation

Cut the eggplant into 4 pieces. Add salt and turmeric to it and let it sit for a while. Finely chop the onion and the tomato.

Heat mustard oil in a wok. Reduce the flame so that the smoke reduces.

Fry the eggplant and set it aside.

In the same wok, add all the spices, green chillies, chopped onions and ginger-garlic paste.

Sauté till onion turns translucent. Do not deep fry.

Add chopped tomatoes and slow cook till the tomatoes turn mushy. Add a little salt during taste so that onions and tomatoes cook properly. Be careful though as salt has already been added in the marinated crab.

Stir fry in slow flame for 3-5 minutes till the oil separates.

Add the marinated crab along with the marination gravy. Saute for 5 minutes in medium to high flame.

Reduce flame and add the chicken stock.

Place the fried eggplant on top. Do not mix else it will become mushy.

Cover the wok and slow cook for 10 minutes. Keep stirring in between.

Remove the lid. The crab shells would now be light pink and the eggplants would have softened.

Pass the mustard paste water through a sieve. Now add the mustard paste water.

Let the contents simmer for another 2 minutes.

Take care not to over cook crab else it will become chewy. Remove from flame and add chopped coriander. Drizzle 1 tbsp of raw mustard oil on top.

Serve hot with rice or parathas.

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