Poush-sankranti or makar sankranti is celebrated as the harvest festival in West Bengal. Harvest festival is as expected celebrated with food made from the fresh harvest of rice and date palm jaggery. Bongs famous for their sweet tooth use the festival as an excuse to make all sorts of sweets which are rice flour crepe based. These are called pithe.
Even though I make it every year, this is the first time when my daughter took a sudden liking to it. The liking soon turned into addiction. Even 5 minutes, she’d sneak up to the refrigerator and grab a handful. She even got it packed for her school lunch.
I have tried making patishapta with different proportion of maida, suji mixed with rice flour. However, the proportion used below worked out best for me. The pithe remains soft and yummy for 3-4 days.
Making pati-shapta is a three step process. You need to first make the stuffing that goes inside, then you need to make the crepe, finally bring it all together to make pati-shapta.
- 1 lb. grated coconut
- 1 lb. khoya/concentrated milk solids (an alternative to khoya is a cup of milk powder)
- 3/4th cup khejur gur (date palm jaggery)
Procedure Of making Pur
In a large mixing bowl mix all the above ingredients thoroughly and check the sweetness. Adjust according to your taste. In a pan, cook the coconut mixture on a low flame till the mixture comes together and leaves the sides of the pan. You need to stir continuously to avoid the mixture from sticking to the base of the pan. Allow the mixture to cool down. Your filling is ready to use.
- 2 cups maida / all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup semolina
- 1/2 cup rice flour
- 2,3 tbsp of powdered sugar
- 3-4 cups of cold milk
- Ghee (clarified butter) for later use during frying
Make The Batter
Mix all dry ingredients together and slowly add milk to make an uniform batter. Mix well and make sure that no lump is formed. The batter will be little thinner than pancake batter.
Heat a non-stick skillet or tawa and evenly spread a teaspoon of ghee/clarified butter. Sprinkle some water over it and when the water starts to sizzle, wipe off the ghee with a kitchen towel. You need to repeat this step before making each patishapta but use just few drops of ghee instead of a spoon full.
Pour a ladle full of batter on the tawa and with the back of the ladle spread it in a circle like making dosa. Cook it on low flame for 2-3 minutes. Put a spoon full of filling on one side and then roll it like a crepe. Step by step guide is below, click to enlarge.
You can have it, as it is, or spread 1 or 2 spoon of sweet condensed milk or liquid jaggery over it. Serve it hot.