Luchi, prawns, mutton on the menu at home, restaurants | Kolkata News

Calcutta: This Poila Baisakh, traditional recipes are back on the shelves of Bengali homes and on restaurant menus. Despite soaring prices for vegetables, meat and all food items, almost every market in Kolkata was packed with shoppers buying the best for the holiday during a long Poila Baisakh weekend.
“We will have a gala lunch followed by a film in a hall in the evening. I will cook rice, biuli dal, alu posto, dhokar dalna and mutton for lunch. For dinner, my children want to have authentic Bengali food in a restaurant,” said Papiya Banerjee (65), a resident of Behala.
Poila Baisakh has a deep connection with food. It is the time of the new harvest in the villages, and there are community festivals in rural Bengal. In the cities, it is one of the main seasons for business circles to hold Ganesha and Lakshmi pujas. Social researchers also say that a Naba Barsha celebration is incomplete without food.
“Bengali households have a tradition of eating fish and different vegetables during Naba Barsha. However, in different memoirs, we also find that to treat friends and relatives, Bengali households prepared traditional dishes, such as luchi, chholar dal and aloor dum. Dry sweets and snacks, like coconut sandesh, nadu and jibhe-gaja, are also an integral part of the celebrations,” said Rajyeswar Sinha, a Bengali professor at Jadavpur University.
Organizers of food festivals and cultural programs in the city try to add a Bangladeshi touch to the menu with traditional specialties, such as panta bhaat, alu seddho, daaler bora and shutdownki maach, as well as drinks such as l ‘aampora sharbat.
The restaurants also hope for an influx of customers in the morning.
“We have been promoting our special maharaja thali which will include rice, basanti pulao, mutton kasha, kochupata chingri, chutney, papad, sweets and a range of fish and prawns to choose from. Last year, we did relatively good business on this occasion by banking on online delivery by app-based food aggregators. This year we are expecting a rush of diners,” said Vishal Saha, owner of Kasturi restaurant.

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