On days which are grey, your mind turn even greyer. No, I am not obsessing over 50 shades of Grey nor have I found any Christian Grey in real life. Its just this mundane grey-ness which is souring my mood for the last few days. The Weather Gods and their over abundance of rain and cloudy skies over the Kansas City skyline are the biggest culprits in this regard. They are almost resembling a D-grade villain from a C-grade Bollywood Masala flick.All this greyness and the induced crazy mind set, made me step out of my comfort zone big time. No, I did not attempt a sky-dive like the recent sky-diving update clogging all our news feed everywhere. I landed up doing something which will surely earn me the wrath of the Chatterjee Culinary Queens. I dared to cook Posto with holud(turmeric), onion and kalo jeere(nigella seeds/kalonji). I have broken every rule of the Posto Code. For the household I have grown up in, its like committing a culinary harakiri. No, I was not intoxicated. I was fully aware of what I was doing, so cannot blame some spirit for my actions. There are days when one just acts crazy.

Some might ask, what the heck is the so-called Posto Code??? Well, its the unwritten Bible about the way Posto is cooked in Bong households. To be more specific, in Ghoti (West Bengali rather than East Bengali ) households. The code commandeth that Posto should be ground with a  few green chilies. When it comes to the actual cooking, then a dash of mustard oil, a handful of diced potatoes and salt should do the trick. Other ingredients should not overwhelm the signature flavor of Posto itself. And definitely never any turmeric. A whitish dry subzi which is always enjoyed with either Arhar(Toor) Daal or Kalai er Daal. And to think I dared to break this supreme Culinary Code.

I had picked up Zuchinis as I wanted to grill them with some Malai Kebabs. Both me and Hubby have been pushing each other, to marinate the kebabs, but both have been upto other things. So I decided that the kebabs could wait and lemme try something Bong with these veggies.I had dug into this dish,Zucchini-Aloo Posto this Summer, during the long East Coast trip. The taste had lingered on, and on this grey day, I decided, why not !! I had never asked the lady, how she had made her Zucchini-Aloo Posto, so I just cooked from my memory of the taste and ingredients. I decided to cook by my instinct, giving a damn to every established notion. If I can be a non-conformist in so many other aspects of life, can I not be that when it comes to cooking with an ingredient ? ! So here's my disclaimer. This is not a bid to woo anyone or to hurt some one's culinary sentiments. It's just a different day at the Bong kitchen. As long as the food's tasty, I believe in wasting no time, and polishing it off. That is exactly what I did, with the Zucchini -Aloo Posto, with some Bhaat and leftover Kalai er Daal. A vegetarian weeknight dinner, which was pretty satisfying.


Poppy Seeds: 5-6 tbsp
Green Chilies: 2-3(adjust according to heat preferences)
Turmeric: 1 tsp
Red Chili Powder: 1 tsp
Zucchini: 2 : diced
Potatoes: 1 large: diced
Onion: 1 medium sized one: sliced finely
Kalo Jeere/Kalonji/Nigella seeds: 1 tsp
Mustard Oil: 2 tbsp plus 1 tsp
Salt: to taste


Soak the poppy seeds in some luke warm water for about an hour at least. Grind the poppy seeds till they form a thick white paste, in the blender. I made the mistake of adding a bit too much water.

In a large non stick pan, add in the mustard oil and let it get hot. Add in the kalo jeere. Wait for them to splutter and then add in the sliced onion. Cook on medium heat till the onion starts to caramelise.

Once the onion slices have started to change color, add in the diced zucchini and potatoes. Make sure that all the veggies are cut around the same size, so that they are cooked uniformly. Add some turmeric powder and let them caramelise around the edges. Make sure that you keep stirring infrequently.

Add in the Posto Bata or the Poppy Seed paste. Mine was bit too runny.

Add in the salt and red chili powder. Mix well. Cook for around 2-3 minutes  Then add just enough water  to dunk the veggies. Cover and cook and keep stirring frequently.

Keep checking for veggies, so that they do not turn mushy. My poppy paste was a bit too runny, so I did not add too much water.

This is a dry dish, so make sure that you dry up the water. The poppy paste should be coating the veggies and not be runny.

Do a taste test. This dish has a slight kick to it for the red and green chilies.

Turn off the heat. Add in a teaspoon of mustard oil and keep covered, till you are ready to dig in.

Serve with some steamed rice and either Arhar(Toor) Dal or Kalai er Daaal.

Bon Appetit !!!

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