Pati Shapta is a sweet dish prepared at every home in Bengal during "Poush Sankranti." Poush Sankranti also known as 'Makar Sankranti' is a harvest festival largely celebrated in different provinces of India. Considered to be very auspicious, this festival marks an end of winter season and welcomes new produce. People wear new clothes and cook lots of delectable goodies at home in celebration of this occasion. An assortment of home-made sweet delicacies including Pati Shapta, Puli Pithe, Rosh Puli and Chitoi pithe are served on table and delightfully feasted upon.
I made Pati Shapta recently cause I could not curb my desire to cook something with the lovely sought-after nalen gur (date molasses) which is sold in the market only during the winter. Nalen gur is a sweet cake made from the juice of date trees.
In Kolkata, all the sweet shops around this time sell varieties of sweets made from nalen gur. Oooh the rosogollas of nalen gur simply taste awesome and bring water to my mouth at the very name only. I am dreadfully missing all the sweets of Kolkata now.
Ingredients :(makes 6-7 pati shaptas) Cooking time: 1 hour approx.
ü 1 grated coconut
ü 200 gm condensed milk (I used Nestle milkmaid)
ü 4 cups of milk
ü 200 gm of all-purpose flour
ü 50 gm semolina
ü 1 tsp cardamom powder
ü Sugar to taste (I used nalen gur)
ü White oil for cooking
1) Grind the grated coconuts into paste.
2) Heat a non-sticky skillet. Sauté the coconut on it till coconut turns golden brown in color. Add condensed milk and fold in the two ingredients properly, stirring continuously. Add sugar or nalen gur and stir around.
3) Add 2 cups of milk and stir continuously. Be careful that the mixture does not burn at the bottom.
5) In a bowl, make a batter out of 2 cups of milk, semolina, all-purpose flour and water. The batter should not be very thick and too watery in consistency. Something in between.
6) In a non-sticky skillet, heat a bit of oil and pour a ladle full of this batter. Spread it uniformly across the skillet. Cook on medium heat.
7) When the pancake is roasted on both sides, line up the filling of coconut through the middle of the pancake and fold up. Serve hot.