Panta bhaat is a centuries-old recipe that involves fermenting cooked rice overnight. Consumed in summer, panta bhaat supplies probiotic bacteria and plenty of micronutrients that aid digestion. It produces a soporific effect that is conducive to a siesta that Bengalis love.
The fermentation of the rice carbohydrates by good bacteria increases the availability of a lot of micronutrients and minerals in the rice.
- coconut (sliced)
- green chillies
- gondhoraj lebu
- dried red chilli (optional)
- Wash the rice and fill your pot with water.
- Peel potatoes and divide them into large chunks. Boil them along with the rice. Cook rice 10 minutes longer than you normally would. The rice should be soft; the softer the better.
- Extract the boiled potatoes from the rice. Strain the rice and allow it to cool completely at room temperature.
- Once the rice has cooled, add regular water. The water level should be about 2-cm over the level of rice. Gently break up the lumps. Allow rice to ferment in a cool, dark place for 8 hours.
- Squeeze water from rice and transfer to a serving bowl. Mash rice thoroughly. Mash in a boiled potato.
- Fry dried red chillies. Crush green chillies using a mortar and pestle.
- Squeeze in a dash of gondhoraj lebu. Season with salt as per your taste. Add the crushed green chilli and kasundi. Mix everything till well combined. Add a ladleful of chilled tok dal to the pantabhaat. Add sliced onion and mix.
- Now, add a ladleful of rice water. Garnish with fresh coconut slices, sliced onions, fried red chilli, green chillis, and a slice of mango from the dal.
- You can serve panta bhaat with alu-peyaj bhaja, alu bhorta, dal'er bora, and machh bhaja.