Muro Diye Kochur Loti (Bengali-Style Mishmash of Colocasia Stolons with Fish Heads)

how to cook kochur loti with fish

Muro Diye Kochur Loti (Bengali-Style Mishmash of Colocasia Stolons with Fish Heads).

 

People hardly know about Kochur Loti or Colocasia stolons in Mumbai, which is a jewel ingredient in Bengali cuisine. Earlier this year, I was fortunate to stumble upon a thelawalla from Bihar who understood what it is, and promised me to bring some Loti the next week. Thesedays, I don’t see him anymore. Last week, when my Bengali helper’s relative visited her, to my surprise, he got a huge bunch of Loti for me, along with a dozen of Gondhoraaj Lebu and some plump green chillies from Kolkata. I couldn’t be happier. Those looked plump and fresh. Those reminded me of my own roots!

 

Recipe of Kochu Loti Macher Maatha diye

Bengali food-lovers can eat a plateful of rice with just a fistful of Loti.

 

There are many Bengalis who don’t cook Loti at home as they are reluctant that these will itch their throat or upset the stomach. Yes, it does, if you don’t know the right technique to cook it. The stolons of colocasia contain tiny calcium oxalate crystals which are responsible for itching, on sticking to the mucous membrane of the throat.

 

How to cook Kochur Loti with detailed instructions on Cosmopolitan Currymania

To get rid of the slight itching in the throat, the peeled and chopped stolons have to be boiled in salted water with turmeric powder. The water is then discarded and the Loti rinsed thoroughly.

 

How do you cook Kochur Loti so that your throat doesn’t itch!

 

  1. Yes, it is possible. I follow my Grandma’s method, which works absolutely fine.

 

  1. Peel the outer fibrous skin of the stolons or Loti. While doing that, your palms must be smeared with mustard oil and salt.

 

  1. Measure out water in a container in such a way that it should be enough to submerge the stolons, post chopping.

 

  1. Boil the water with 2 tsp salt and 1.5 tsp turmeric paste or powder. Add the washed Loti (approx. 750 g now), which have been chopped into index-finger-sized pieces. Boil for 10 min under high flame.

 

  1. Switch off the flame and let the stolons rest in the boiling water for 5 min.

 

  1. Drain the water completely and rinse the cooked stolons with cold water.

 

  1. Proceed as per the recipe. But make sure to cook on high heat as much as possible or use a sour agent like Kasundi (Bengali mustard sauce), tamarind or even tomatoes. These provide the acidic medium to dissolve the oxalate crystals.

 

Kochur Loti recipes by Purabi Naha

Colocasia shoot or Taro stolon is a versatile Bengali vegetable.

 

With so much of trouble, why does a Bengali even bother to eat Loti?

Because Loti is a very versatile vegetable for Bengali dishes and is crazy delicious! It provides a smooth texture in each bite. Unlike drumsticks, these just melt in the mouth. Bengalis love to cook it in the Niramish (vegetarian) way, or more commonly, with aromatic fish like Hilsa (Ilish), shrimps (Chingri) or even Bhetki. In my blogpost early this year, I shared with you all the detailed recipe of another Bengali Loti favourite, cooked with prawns: Kochur Loti aar Chingri Maacher Paturi (Bengali Paturi Dish with Taro Stolons and Prawns). If you want to know more on this vegetable, do read that post too!

As a rule, Loti has to be cooked with a generous amount of onion, garlic and green chilles and/or red chilli paste. To get that “Grandma-style” flavour, you need a good amount of mustard oil to cook Loti. But however tasty it might be, control your portion size, otherwise you might end up next morning with stomach cramps and an upset stomach!

 

Caution: If you are prone to allergy, do not try this dish.

Inspite of all the pain, Loti is so much worth it! It is, in fact, one of my favourite Bengali veggies. If you are cooking this in the Niramish or vegetarian way, Kalo Jeere (Kalonji, Mangrel or Nigella seeds) work well. Coriander seed paste (a true Bengali will always use paste instead if powder) goes well with any colocasia dish, including the Loti.

 

Use leftover fish heads to make this Bengali delicacy

Muro Diye Kochur Loti (Bengali-Style Mishmash of Colocasia Stolons with Fish Heads).

 

However, Loti tastes the best with onions, garlic, lots of oil and lots of green chillies. And, if you add fish, it just becomes a comfort dish that Bengalis crave throughout their life. Yes, it is one of those dishes!

 

Muro Diye Kochur Loti (Bengali-Style Mishmash of Colocasia Stolons with Fish Heads)

 

Ingredients:

  1. Kochur Loti or Colocasia stems/stolons: 750 g (weight after peeling and chopping)
  2. Medium-sized purple onions (slit thinly and lengthwise): 6–7
  3. Garlic paste (freshly made): 2.5 tbsp
  4. Medium-sized tomatoes (roughly chopped): 4
  5. Sugar: ½ tsp
  6. Slit green chillies: 8
  7. Green chilli paste: ¾ tsp
  8. Fish heads (Rohu, Hilsa and/or Katla), gills discarded: 4–5 (heads chopped into four pieces)
  9. Turmeric powder: 2 tsp
  10. Salt: 2.5 tsp (approx.)
  11. Mustard oil: 1.5 cups

 

Method:

 

  1. Read the section of “How do you cook Kochur Loti so that your throat doesn’t itch!” at the beginning of this blogpost. Cook the Loti accordingly, drain and keep it aside.
Cooking Bengali Loti

The boiled Loti has to be trained and rinsed with cold water.

 

2.   Marinate the fish heads with half the amount of salt and turmeric powder for 15 min.

3.  Heat a deep-bottomed Kadhai. Add the mustard oil and let it become very hot. Reduce the flame and introduce the fish heads (in two batches, preferably) into the oil very carefully. Close the lid to avoid sputtering of oil and let it cook for a few minutes. Flip and cook the other side for a few minutes as well, or until lightly browned. Remove the heads from the oil and set aside.

 

Cooking Kochur Loti with Maacher Matha or muro

This dish needs a generous amount of garlic.

 

4.   In the same Kadhai, add the garlic. Briefly fry for a few seconds. Add the chopped onions. Add the turmeric powder (or paste) and sauté till the onions are very soft and mushy. This is achieved by covering the lid and cooking under slow flame. If the onion sticks to the Kadhai while cooking, sprinkle some water.

 

Adding the onions.

Adding the onions.

 

5.    Add the tomatoes and sauté till these become soft. Add sugar and sauté for a few seconds.

 

Cooking Kochur Loti at home

You must always cook loti with a sour ingredient: sour tomatoes in my case.

 

6.    Then add the green chillies and the chilli paste. Cover and cook for 5 min.

 

Jhaal loti

Added the chilli paste and slit green chillies for that Jhaal (spicy) flavour.

 

7.    Open the lid and add the fried fish heads. Increase the flame to medium and sauté for 10 min. While you do that, break the heads further, with the help of the cooking spoon.

 

Fish heads taste very good with Kochur Loti

Adding the fish heads to the fried onions.

 

8.    Add the cooked and drained Kochur Loti or the stolons of colocasia. Add the rest of the salt and turmeric powder and cook uncovered on a high flame for 10 min.

 

Adding the boiled Loti.

Adding the boiled Loti.

 

9.    Reduce the flame and cook covered, for almost 10 more min, mixing the contents of the Kadhai twice or thrice. At the point when the Loti or the stolons just start to lose their shape, switch off the flame.

 

The dish is almost ready!

The dish is almost ready!

 

10.    Enjoy Muro Diye Kochur Loti with steamed rice.

 

Muro Diye Kochur Loti (Bengali-Style Mishmash of Colocasia Stolons with Fish Heads)

Muro Diye Kochur Loti (Bengali-Style Mishmash of Colocasia Stolons with Fish Heads)

Ingredients

  • Kochur Loti or Colocasia stems/stolons: 750 g (weight after peeling and chopping)
  • • Medium-sized purple onions (slit thinly and lengthwise): 6–7
  • • Garlic paste (freshly made): 2.5 tbsp
  • • Medium-sized tomatoes (roughly chopped): 4
  • • Sugar: ½ tsp
  • • Slit green chillies: 8
  • • Green chilli paste: ¾ tsp
  • • Fish heads (Rohu, Hilsa and/or Katla), gills discarded: 4–5 (heads chopped into four pieces)
  • • Turmeric powder: 2 tsp
  • • Salt: 2.5 tsp (approx.)
  • • Mustard oil: 1.5 cups

Instructions

  1. • Read the section of “How do you cook Kochur Loti so that your throat doesn’t itch!” at the beginning of this blogpost. Cook the Loti accordingly, drain and keep it aside. This is the primary treatment.
  2. • Marinate the fish heads with half the amount of salt and turmeric powder for 15 min.
  3. • Heat a deep-bottomed Kadhai. Add the mustard oil and let it become very hot. Reduce the flame and introduce the fish heads (in two batches, preferably) into the oil very carefully. Close the lid to avoid sputtering of oil and let it cook for a few minutes. Flip and cook the other side for a few minutes as well, or until lightly browned. Remove the heads and set aside.
  4. • In the same Kadhai, add the garlic. Briefly fry for a few seconds. Add the chopped onions. Add the turmeric powder (or paste) and sauté till the onions are very soft and mushy. This is achieved by covering the lid and cooking under slow flame. If the onion sticks to the Kadhai while cooking, sprinkle some water.
  5. • Add the tomatoes and sauté till these become soft. Add sugar and sauté for a few seconds.
  6. • Then add the green chillies and the chilli paste. Cover and cook for 5 min.
  7. • Open the lid and add the fried fish heads. Increase the flame to medium and sauté for 10 min. While you do that, break the heads further, with the help of the cooking spoon.
  8. • Add the cooked and drained Kochur Loti or the stolons of colocasia. Add the rest of the salt and turmeric powder and cook uncovered on a high flame for 10 min.
  9. • Reduce the flame and cook covered, for almost 10 more min, mixing the contents of the Kadhai twice or thrice. At the point when the Loti or the stolons just start to lose their shape, switch off the flame.
  10. • Enjoy Muro Diye Kochur Loti with steamed rice.
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