Jibe Gaja or Bengali Fried Pastry11:25 AM
The year started with a bang this time, which makes me look at it with great new hopes. We had great fun together with friends and families and brought in the year with firecrackers and music. Food always tops the priority list of any Bong party and we enjoyed the vast spread that we pampered ourselves with. And then unlike most weekends the beginning of the year saw us lazing in the house and having great time with the baby and some very close friends.
But the New Year also brings in the inevitable question of new resolutions. I know many of you do not believe in making resolutions for a year and even some says that we can set goals any time of the year. True, but I always make new resolutions on every first day of a brand new year, with the hope that this year I would be able to stick to my promise…. Its another case that most have them are never realised. But the gone year has taught me many a valuable lessons of life and now I approach and analyze things in a realistic manner. So this year at the time of setting goals for myself I tried to fix achievable goals. Am no Super woman (between do they wear salwar kameez, scrub sink, feed wailing babies and change diaper???) and so no super goals for me this year. I have set some simple goals to make our lives healthy and finally have left the desire of being stick thin.
So I have promised to walk for 30 minutes everyday, without any excuse. If it rains outside I will walk in my drawing room (with the inevitable situation of the baby hanging from one of my knee. Trust me he does that).between if you want to do the same check this.
On weekends I will do aerobics for at least 30 minutes.
Will not skip breakfast and will eat one fruit everyday.
Will at least have one serving of soup and five servings of lentils every week.
Also will drink atleast one cup of green tea every day.
Will limit sweets to only 2 servings every week.
Otherwise am happy with the way we eat at the moment. We don’t eat white bread, only eat rice on weekends and do all the housework by ourselves.
My work, blog and my garden are my priorities the way they appear in the list. And will give them the time they need.
On personal front the birth of my son has changed a lot in me. Now am less lazy, more active, much more patient, very very loving and quite practical. Looking forward to many more years with him to learn and do things together.
That’s it for the moment. What are your resolutions for 2011? If you want to share am all ears.
Well I know this recipe doesn’t go well with my goals of healthy eating but these are part of those sinful delights, which make life desirable J
Jibe gaja pronounced, as jee-be-gaw-ja is a traditional Bengali fried dough food or dessert. This is the Bengali cousin of North Indian Shakkar para. The name literally means tongue shaped gaja or fried pastry. Flour is kneaded with lots of shortening (traditionally with ghee or clarified butter) and then rolled, slathered with more ghee to create layers. Deep fried and then dipped in thick sugar syrup to create these sinfully delicious fried goodies. This is very Famous in Orissa also, as this comes as a part of the offerings to The Jagannath Temple. We generally make this during the Bijoya Dashami time (the last day of the Durga puja or the Day of dashera) to feed the guests who come to exchange Bijoya greetings. This year we were not in a mood to share happiness during that time and I made this to send to a special person as a part of Arusuvai Friendship chain.
Here is the recipe:
(Makes 3 dozens)
Flour: 11/2 cups
Vegetable oil/ghee/butter: 4 tbsp (I used saffola gold)
Salt: 1/3 tsp
Nigella seeds: ½ tsp
Ghee: 1 tbsp
Rice powder: 1 tbsp
For the syrup
Sugar: 1 cup
Water: ½ cup
Cardamom: 2 no.s; crushed
Oil for deep frying
Pour the oil in it and rub with your finger till a breadcrumb like texture is achieved.
Add water very little at a time till you get smooth dough. Knead the dough on an oiled surface till it becomes soft.
Cover and set aside for 30 minutes.
Take a medium size ball from the dough and roll to 1/6 to 1/7” thickness. Make another one of almost the same size.
Spread little of the ghee mixture on the top surface of one roti and cover it with another one. Again smear the top of the second roti with little ghee mixture. cut the sandwiched rotis in half.
working with one half, roll it tightly to a log. Cut 1” pieces from this log and roll out each piece to a long thin rectangle. Repeat with the rest of the dough. Keep these covered in all stages.
Once you are ready to fry the gaja put the oil in a heavy bottom pan. There should be enough oil for deep frying (min 2” oil).
Switch on the heat and keep on low. The temperature of the oil is very crucial and more heat will make the gaja raw from inside. Please see note below.
Fry the gaja till golden brown, drain and keep on absorbent paper.
Once you are done with the frying let the gaja cool down.
In the meantime make the syrup by boiling the sugar and water together. After 3-4 minutes check the syrup by taking a drop between your fingers. Press and release, if you see one thread is forming between your fingers you are ready to go. Mix in the crushed cardamom.
Add all the gaja and very quickly stir to coat them evenly with the syrup. The syrup will solidify once the gaja comes in touch with it.
When done spread them on greased plates and let it cool down.
If you desire you can dust them with powdered sugar…I did as am in love with the dreamy snowfall.
Store in an airtight container and enjoy!!!
A Homemaker’s Notes:
- The heat of the oil is very crucial and I can’t press this point enough. This is what I do. I always heat the oil to smoking point and then switch off the heat and again switch on after 3-4 minutes. That way the raw smell of the oil is gone and the oil is hot enough to cook the gaja till light brown. Also keep on adjusting the heat by increasing or decreasing the flame.
2. You can also check the syrup by putting a drop of syrup in a bowl of cold
water; if it doesn’t dissolve and immediately comes on the surface…the
syrup is ready.
Deep Fried Snacks at Tickling Palates.
Deep Fried Snacks at Tickling Palates.
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