Hello everybody !! Hope you have a lovely week ahead.
Today’s recipe is about the most edible and highly nutritious plant – banana. This is a Bengali recipe of Banana Flower (‘Mocha’) with Prawns. You can use minced prawns like I did, or use them whole. A very easy and tasty recipe you will love preparing.
Banana Flower can be prepared in lots of different ways – both veg and non veg style. I will be sharing few more varieties in upcoming posts.
Apart from being a very tasty food, banana flower has several health benefits.
- Banana flowers possess the Vitamin C, A, E, fiber and potassium which are the sources of healthy nutrient.
- It improves mood and lessens anxiety due to magnesium present in them. They serve as anti-depressants without side effects.
- Banana flowers are high source of tannins, acids, flavonoids and other antioxidants which helps to counteract free radicals and eliminates the oxidative damage which leads to cancer and heart disease.
- It helps to cure excessive bleeding, maintains healthy uterus, restrict constipation during pregnancy and promotes lactation.
- It reduces level of blood sugar and raise hemoglobin in the body as it is rich in fiber and iron which assists in red blood cell production.
- It possesses ethanol which helps to prevent the pathogenic bacterial growth.
Lets get started !!
Preparation Time : 30 minutes (Clean and remove threads from prawns, chop them into small pieces. Next clean and boil finely chopped banana flowers as mentioned below.)
Select a fresh banana flower having rich reddish purple color. When you slightly remove the outer leaf you can see long yellowish flowers. Break a tiny bit from any of the flowers and taste it, select only the one which does not taste bitter.
Open the leaves one by one. Collect the flowers, discard leaf. While peeling, the leaves will get paler in color and the flowers will get smaller. Keep repeating the steps until you reach the white yellow flower heart.
Now start cleaning each flower. First take cold water in a large bowl. Open a flower and observe the inside. You will find a white plastic-like petal and a long matchstick-like stem. Remove both of them (When you pull the stem the petal will automatically come out, very gently remove both of them together to avoid breaking the whole flower). This step is mandatory otherwise the flowers will be hard and bitter. Discard stem and petal you removed and dip the remaining flower in cold water to avoid discoloration. Repeat these steps for all the flowers.
Now take a separate bowl, fill it with cold water as well. Take the flower heart. Cut thin slices like circular rings first. Then finely chop each of the rings and immediately place them in cold water. The flower heart pieces are very sticky and turns black very easily, so be quick with this part.
Once you are done cleaning the flowers, take a pressure cooker. Add 3 to 4 cups water, few pinches of salt and few pinches of turmeric powder. Hold little bunches of flowers and chop them as finely as you can. Immediately add them into the pressure cooker. Keep doing it until you are left with only finely chopped pieces of banana flowers. Now mix the finely chopped flower heart pieces also into the cooker. Close the lid and wait for 3 to 4 whistles in medium flame. Once the banana flowers are boiled, strain water completely and keep them in a separate bowl.
Cooking Time : 15 minutes
- Banana Flower – 1 bowl, finely chopped and boiled
- Prawns – 5 to 6, minced and slightly fried (You can use more prawns if you want, also you can use whole prawns instead of minced)
- Potato – 1 small, cut into very small pieces (optional)
- Ginger paste – 1 tablespoon
- Tomato – 1 big, roughly chopped
- Dry Bay leaf – 1
- Dry red chilli – 1
- Turmeric Powder – 1 teaspoon
- Red Chilli Powder – 1 tablespoon
- Cumin Powder – 1 tablespoon
- Coriander Powder – 1 tablespoon
- Salt – as per taste
- Sugar – 1/2 teaspoon
- Mustard Oil – 2 tablespoon
- Heat 1 tablespoon in a wok. Let it heat up.
- Marinate the minced prawns with salt and pinch of turmeric powder. Slightly fry them till they turn golden. Remove from oil and keep aside.
- Add the remaining oil and let it heat up. Add potatoes and a pinch of salt. Fry them until they turn golden. Remove from oil and keep aside.
- Now add dry bay leaf and dry red chilli in the same oil.
- Add ginger paste. Wait for few seconds. Then add tomatoes. Stir until the tomatoes become soft.
- Next add remaining turmeric powder, red chilli powder, coriander powder, cumin powder and salt. Mix well. Stir until the spices start releasing oil.
- Now add potatoes and boiled banana flowers. Mix everything well. Lower the flame to medium. Cover the wok with a lid. Occasionally open the lid and stir.
- When the potatoes are boiled, add sugar. If required you can add little warm water. Mix everything well and cover the lid again.
- When everything is done and the gravy has become almost dry, remove the lid and stir until the water completely dries up.
- Turn the flame off and give the dish some standing time.
Serve Banana Flower with Prawns as a side dish with bread or rice.