Paturi is an unique technique where things are cooked wrapped in fresh banana leaves. In the olden days, traditionally, these banana leaf parcels used to be placed inside the pan of hot steaming rice , where in the steam from the cooked rice provides the necessary heat to cook the Paturi. This is basically a slow cooking technique where fish, prawn are steeped in flavorful spices , wrapped in fresh leaves and cooked to perfection.
Paturi comes from a Bengali word called Patta or leaf,so anything cooked inside a leaf is known as Paturi thus the name Paturi , prawn paturi etc. Traditionally banana leaf is used to prepare paturi as they are large and flexible, besides food cooked in banana leaves adds a subtle flavor to the dish , but many use other edible leaves such as Pumpkin leaves, Bottle Gourd Leaves which gives a very distinct flavor to the dish also.
Paturi is one of the signature Bengali dishes where fish or prawn are marinated in mustard paste and generously drizzed with mustard oil and wrapped securely in Banana Leaf and steamed before serving along with hot steamed rice. If you are a Fish Lover, You must give it a try as it is so similar to Patrani Machchi yet so different in taste as Paturi uses mustard paste and coconut while Patrani Machchi uses green chutney consisting of predominantly coriander leaves and coconut.
On my Sunday Lunch menu was this Chingri paturi or Prawn Paturi where I cooked these Prawns marinated in coconut and mustard paste, wrapped in banana leaves, and believe me it was pure bliss. Prawn has always been my Son’s favorite and that’s why I mostly end up making many dishes out of them like Daab Chingri, Malabar Prawn Curry, MISA MACH POORA, PRAWN MALAI CURRY and CURRIED PRAWN IN COCONUT MILK. Follow the pictorial process for making this Paturi.
Either a Bengali Paturi , Odia Patra Poda or a Parsi Patrani Machchhi, all these are subtly flavoured fish delicacies of their respective communities are a must try once in your life.