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Paat Patar Bora (Jute Leaf Fritters) for #ChaiPakodaDay

[Only tender jute leaves are used for this recipe. Discard the stems. I will not go by measurements, since it is my grandmother’s recipe. In olden days, Indian cooks measured with eyes, mind and experience, rather than proper measurements. I will stick to that for the first two ingredients in this recipe.]

Ingredients

  • Tender Jute leaves _Pat shak_ or Pat pata in Bengali: A big handful
  • Rice flour mixed with water to make a thick batter: sufficient to dip and coat all the leaves
  • Semolina or suji: 2 tbsp
  • Carom seeds _Ajwain_ in Hindi or Jowan in Bengali: 1 tsp
  • Warm mustard oil: 2 tbsp
  • Turmeric powder or paste: ½ tsp
  • Red chilli powder or paste: 1 tsp
  • Salt: 1 tsp or according to taste
  • Baking soda: ½ tsp
  • Sufficient mustard oil for deep-frying

Instructions

  • Wash the Pat Shak and pat dry slightly. Chop roughly.
  • Add the warm mustard oil, semolina, red chilli powder, turmeric powder, salt and baking soda to the rice-flour batter. The batter has to be very thick.
  • Mix the leaves with the batter. Check and adjust the salt at this stage. Allow to rest for 5 min.
  • Heat the mustard oil until smoke is released. Simmer the flame. Add around 1 tbsp of the leaves smeared with the batter, at a time. Don’t overcrowd the Kadhai or the cooking utensil with too many fritters or Bora at a time. Otherwise, you will not get crispy Boras.
  • When one side of the Bora is golden-brown, flip over and fry till both sides are evenly coloured. Do not cover the utensil while frying. Also, the flame should be simmered throughout the frying process.
  • Remove on an absorbent paper and serve this Bengali Bora immediately with a hot cup of tea or with steamed rice.