The Telegraph
Saturday , January 12 , 2013
Since 1st March, 1999
CIMA Gallary

The smell of notun gur, coconut pulp and boiling milk wafting in the chilly winter air is exhilarating enough to make Bengalis realise that Makar Sankranti is a wink away and that means… time for pithey and puli!

Chocolate Patishapta uses molten-dark chocolate instead of sugar!

Starting January 12, Bong food destination 6 Ballygunge Place will host a four-day Pithey Puli Festival to make us wallow in memories conjured by grannies and announce the arrival of newly harvested rice.

On the menu are seven preparations — Patishapta, Chocolate Patishapta, Gokul Pithey, Puli Pithey-r Payesh, Dhakai Rospithey, Malai Daab Puli and Malai Moong Pithey. The Puli Pithey (rice flour dumplings cooked in a mixture of milk, jaggery and coconut) and Patishapta (rice flour pancakes stuffed with kheer and coconut pulp) are typical eats during the harvest festival. Another traditional item on the menu is the Gokul Pithey. “It is an age-old recipe and is made almost all across Bengal. A mixture of coconut pulp, jaggery and condensed milk is dipped in a batter of rice flour, deep fried in oil and served with sugar syrup,” said chef Sayantan Sengupta.

Innovation goes hand in hand with tradition at this Ballygunge food destination and so the Chocolate Patishapta. “The usual Patishapta pancake is made using maida, suji (semolina) and sugar. We replaced sugar with molten dark chocolate. The filling is made of chocolate sandesh,” said the chef.

The Dhakai Rospithey is an uncommon winter delicacy here. “This is a speciality from Dhaka and we have made our version of it,” said the chef.

“We are expecting at least 200 guests each day,” said Partha Banerjee, manager of 6 Ballygunge Place.

Between January 12 and 15, a meal for two costs Rs 500-plus.