Calcutta is famous for its love for food. People here take pride in being true aficionados of the gastronomic delights - bon vivant !!! One such tummy-happy cuisine that has taken its own color in Calcutta is the Mughlai style of cooking, an import from princely North India. And restaurants - old and new, traditional and experimental, commonplace and classy - abound in this city to bear witness to the love of the local people for this style of food. Famous and popular establishments are Shiraz, Rahmania, Sabbir and, my favorite, Arsalan. People are known to rave about the food served in these places and each place commands its own legion of fans. My husband and myself, both an unabashed fan of Arsalan.
The Mughlai food reached Calcutta holding the hands of the exiled Nawab of Audh - Wajed Ali Shah, who was defeated by the British in the war of 1857 and sent packing to Calcutta, where he was under house-arrest with a huge retinue, typical of royalty. His was a singular influence on the literature, art, architecture and food on contemporary Calcutta. Since then, local taste and flavor has mingled with the cuisine of the royal kitchens
Biryani : easily differentiated from the other styles in India by its presence of potato and egg in the lightly-spiced, ghee-laden, heart-filling aromatic rice
Chaap : a meat dish in a very thick, grainy masala paste) and
Rezala : another chicken dish in a very light and subtly sweet, yogurt-based sauce
With this in mind and missing my favorite Rezala, I decided to try my hand at making this item at home. And, from the way my resident in-house food critic - my husband - slurped up the sauce, I can feel the outcome was pretty joyous. The careful planning and slow cooking did its magic, it seems !!!
Below I share with my readers, the steps to recreate the magic of Rezala in your home :
Author: Anshu Bhatnagar from My Mom's Recipes
Recipe type: Entree