Chal Potol, a classic Bengali vegetarian delicacy, is a dish that will tantalize your taste buds. It is made with fresh pointed gourd and aromatic gobindobhog rice, cooked to perfection. The combination of the two ingredients results in an exquisite flavor and texture. The pointed gourd is cooked until it is tender and the gobindobhog rice is cooked in such a way that it is fluffy and light.
Muri Ghonto, sometimes called Muro Ghonto, is an interesting twist on chal potol and vice versa. Instead of the pointed gourd, this dish uses a fish head along with aromatic rice. If you'd like to try this unique recipe, take a look at our instructions.
I have a deep emotional connection to this simple vegetarian Bengali delicacy cooked with fragrant rice and pointed gourd. My mother's mother, Dida, was an excellent cook, especially when it came to dishes that required a touch of ghee, hing, and ginger paste. I still follow her Shona Moong Dal recipe exactly. In fact, that is one of the most beloved and popular recipes on my blog! Dida used to cook amazing Chal Potol with all her love and obvious culinary proficiency. The rice was cooked to perfection, yet not soggy; pointed gourds were fried to perfection and then cooked with a balanced blend of spices, a dash of ghee, and voila!
The aroma of the dish was always so inviting, and it was made with the freshest ingredients. My mouth would water as soon as I entered the kitchen and smelled the wonderful aroma. I remember Dida's smile when she served the dish, and it was always cooked to perfection. I loved gathering around the set of Pinri with my family, enjoying the delicious meal that Dida had cooked with so much love and care.
The Gobindobhog rice adds a nutty flavor and aroma to Chal Potol, making it even more appetizing. The texture of the rice grain is also important as it needs to be cooked just right to bring out the flavor of the dish. The right balance of spices and other ingredients is also essential to make this dish taste just right. Last, but not the least, you need good quality Pointed Gourd to cook perfect Chaal Pawtol!
See the recipe card for quantities.
Be it Chal Potol or Muri Ghonto, I feel the constant that stands out in the making of these two dishes is the type of rice used. It needs to be fragrant, small-grain Gobindobhog rice that is cultivated in the eastern region of India. This particular type of rice adds a special touch to these Bengali dishes, making them unique and special to Bengali cuisine. Rice is used as an ingredient but the delicacies are side dishes, not the general carbohydrate that is cooked with the rice grain. This is what sets these dishes apart from other rice-based dishes.
If you know how to make the recipe fit a certain diet, let the reader know here. Don't fake it - only provide guidance on topics you have actual experience with.
- Rice - instead of Gobindobhog Rice, you can use other small-grain rice if only the former is not available.
- Low-Calorie - To make the dish low-calorie, fry the pointed gourd in an air-frier and skip half of the oil and ghee completely while cooking
- Cashew Nut - If you are allergic to nuts, skip adding those.
- Spicy - Increase Chilli
- Deluxe - Skip oil and cook chal potol in Ghee!
- Kid-friendly - add a few potato chunks while cooking!
Chal Potol Recipe VideoPrint
Chal Potol is a classic Bengali dish cooked with pointed gourd combined with aromatic gobindobhog rice. It is a vegetarian delight.
- 100g Gobindobhog Rice
- 8 Pointed Gourd/ Potol/ Parwal
- 2 Tomatoes
- 1 Tbsp. Ginger Paste
- 20g Cashew Nuts / Kaju
- 20g Raisins/ Kishmis
- 4 Tbsp. Mustard Oil
- 2 Tsp. Ghee
Spices needed to marinate Pointed Gourd
- 1 Tsp. Salt
- 1 Tsp. Turmeric Powder
- 1 Tsp. Asafoetida / Hing
- 1 Tsp. Cumin Seed
- 2 Cinnamon Stick / Daruchini
- 4 Green Cardamom
- 2 Dry Red Chilli
- 2 Bay Leaves
Spices needed to cook perfect Chal Potol
- 1 Tsp. Salt
- 1 Tsp. Turmeric Powder
- 1 Tsp. Red Chilli Powder
- 1 Tsp. Cumin Powder
- 2 Tsp. Sugar
- 1 Tsp. Bengali Garam Masala
- Wash the gobindobhog rice 3-4 times under running water and soak the rice for 15 minutes.
- After that, wash the Pointed gourd and then remove the stem and a small part from the upper side using a knife. Check the video to understand this part.
- Cut each pointed gourd into 4 long strips.
- Now chop Tomatoes roughly.
- Marinate pointed gourd slices with 1 Tsp. each of Salt and Turmeric Powder.
- Keep those marinated for 10 minutes at least if not more.
Cooking Chaal Potol
- Heat 4 Tbsp. Mustard Oil and fry Cashew Nuts and Raisin one by one.
- It will take 2 minutes altogether in medium flame and strain from the pan.
- In the remaining oil fry the pointed gourd strips in 3 batches.
- It will take 4-5 minutes on low flame to fry each batch.
- Once done strain the potol bhaja / fried pointed gourd and start with the next batch.
- Once done, add 1 Tsp. Ghee to the remaining Oil.
- Once the Ghee is melted add 1 Tsp. Asafoetida aka Hing.
- Now add the whole spices - 1 Tsp. Cumin Seed, 2 Cinnamon Sticks / Daruchini, 4 Green Cardamom, 2 Dry Red Chilli, and also 2 Bay Leaves.
- Mix the spices and cook for a minute.
- Now add chopped Tomatoes.
- Mix and cook on a medium flame for 1 minute and stir continuously and let the tomatoes melt.
- Now add 1 Tbsp. Ginger paste and cook till the raw aroma of ginger goes away.
- Cook till the oil leaves the edges of the mixture on medium flame.
- Now add the spice powders one by one - 1 Tsp. Salt, 1 Tsp. Turmeric Powder, 1 Tsp. Red Chilli Powder and 1 Tsp. Cumin Powder.
- Mix the spices with the mixture.
- Now add 2 Tsp. Sugar and mix.
- Now add soaked gobindobhog rice after discarding the water.
- Stir continuously for at least 2 minutes.
- The rice will be translucent and there will be no moisture in the pan.
- Add 150ml of water and mix.
- Bring it to a boil on a high flame.
- Now add fried parwal / potol bhaja and mix.
- Reduce the flame to medium and cover and cook for 5 minutes.
- Add 75ml water and mix.
- After that add another 75ml water and mix again.
- Cover and cook on low flame for 5 minutes.
- Open the lid and give a thorough mix.
- The rice will be well cooked yet in shape by this time.
- Pointed gourds will also be in shape yet cooked.
- Now add 1 Tsp. Bengali Garam Masala and 1 Tsp. Ghee.
- After mixing add half of the fried Cashew Nuts and fried Raisin and then switch the flame off.
- While serving, top the chal potol with remaining fried cashew nuts and raisins.
- I do not fry and strain Cashew nuts and raisins separately. Instead, I first fry cashew nuts for 1 minute and then after adding raisins fry those all together for another minute and then strain.
- You can completely skip the sugar or reduce it to 1 Tsp. or less.
- Be careful with the amount of water you are using. If possible use the measurement I have shared. This is tried and tested.
- You can add Cashew nuts and raising before adding the Garam Masala as well in case you do not wish them to be crunchy.
- Prep Time: 15
- Cook Time: 30
- Category: Side Dish
- Method: Cooking
- Cuisine: Bengali
- Serving Size: 100g
- Calories: 281
- Sugar: 8.4g
- Sodium: 963mg
- Fat: 15.7g
- Saturated Fat: 2.9g
- Carbohydrates: 34.3g
- Fiber: 3.8g
- Protein: 3.4g
- Cholesterol: 4mg
Keywords: Chal Potol Recipe, bengali potol recipe, potoler torkari recipe, Parwal recipe, Pointed gourd recipe, debjanir rannaghar
The Gobindobhog rice gives the Chal Potol a nutty taste and fragrance, making it very appetizing. The texture of the rice is also critical, as it has to be cooked correctly to bring out the dish's flavor.
Gobindobhog rice is a particularly aromatic, short-grain rice grown in India's eastern region. Its presence in regional dishes such as Bhoger Khichuri, Payesh, Basanti Pulao, and Muri Ghonto sets Bengali cuisine apart, making them a unique delicacy. This type of rice is used to make these special Bengali dishes.
Gobindobhog rice is essential to making chal potol, but if it's not available other types of small-grain or scented rice can be used instead such as Tulaipanji or Kalo Nunia. Still, Gobindobhog offers the ideal texture and scent for the dish, making it the preferred choice.
I mostly serve it fresh. If there is some leftover, we eat it within a day or two obviously after storing it in the refrigerator.
Rice is the main ingredient and hence, making it gluten-free will be like an oxymoron however, you can make it dairy-free by skipping Ghee.
Related Bengali Vegetarian Recipes
Looking for other recipes like this? Try these:
Pairing Chal Potol
These are my favorite dishes to serve with chal potol:
Let's connect over Chal Potol Recipe
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